Thirdmill Study Bible

Notes on Luke 1:2-4:13

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Luke 1:2

passed down. A specific Greek term. It emphasized the care used in passing on the tradition of Jesus's life and teaching (see v. 1; 1 Cor. 11:23; 15:3). eyewitnesses. The previous accounts of Jesus's life and ministry (v. 1) were reliable testimonies from those who saw and heard Jesus. servants. Those eyewitnesses did not seek to spread their own ideas. They submitted to the message of the gospel and dedicated themselves to spreading it to others.

Luke 1:3-4

see WCF 1.1

Luke 1:3

Luke wanted to add his own account of the gospel to what had already been written. accurately investigated. Luke did create the details of his writing. He interviewed and recorded the historical words and events of those who were involved in those events. from the beginning. Could mean Luke investigated the teaching and events of Christianity since he was first a Christian. Or, he investigated Christianity all the way back to its beginnings. orderly account. Luke carefully crafted his work. He organized the material in a chronological way. But he also organized his gospel in a logical way. This is seen in the way he organized Jesus's ministry based on geography. Moreover, Luke emphasized God's salvation in Jesus. Theophilus. The original recipient of this work. The name means "God-lover," so he would be writing to all those who love God. However, he was likely a Gentile believer who had been taught the Christian faith (v. 4). most excellent. An official form of address for someone of social importance. It was often used for those in the Roman government (see Acts 23:26; 24:3; 26:25). Theophilus may have been the one who paid for Luke's research.

Luke 1:4

Luke stated his purpose for writing his Gospel account. know the certainty. Luke wanted his readers to be assured of the truthfulness of Christianity (see Acts 2:36; 21:34: 22:30; 25:26). taught. Indicates Theophilus had previous instruction in the Christian faith and was likely a believer. These opening verses are directed toward him, but Luke also had a wider audience in mind. He intended to disciple believers and defend Christianity against its opponents. Luke wanted to show that Jesus was the Savior of the world, not just the Jewish people.

Jesus' Beginnings with John the Baptist - Luke 1:5-4:13

After 400 years of silence God began to speak again to his people Israel. Luke set the context for Jesus's ministry by showing the supernatural events surrounding his birth and youth.

Birth Announcements – Luke 1:5-56

God prepared for the coming of his Son by sending someone to prepare the way. Both conceptions are the result of God's supernatural working. One son is given to an elderly couple, announced to a priest in the temple. The other son is given to a humble virgin still engaged to her husband. Luke's parallel between Zechariah and Mary called for a response from readers to receive God's Word like Mary, despite her humble status.

Luke 1:5

Herod. Herod the Great who ruled the region from 37 to 4 B.C. He was one of the few people who was granted the title king by Rome. He was brutal in leadership. He even murdered his family when it served his purposes. Herod was also known for his construction projects, including the expansion of the Jewish temple in Jerusalem. Judea. Used to describe the general area, which included Judea, Galilee, Samaria, Perea, and Idumea. Herod himself was part Idumean, Zechariah. A descendent of Aaron whose family has survived the exile. His name means the Lord remembers. division of Abijah. Israel's priesthood was grouped into twenty-four divisions for organized service (1 Chron. 23:32; 24:10). Each division had about 1,000 priests. Every priest served during the feast days. The rest of the year, each division served for a week twice a year. These divisions were named for their ancestral head (Ezra 10:16-22; Neh. 12:1-21). Elizabeth. The same name as Aaron' wife (Exod. 6:23), which means either I swear by God or my God is my fortune. Both indicate reliance on God. Zechariah's wife was also of Aaron's lineage. Their marriage would have been viewed as special blessing from God.

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