Summary: God use this Gentile to write 28% of the New Testament, he had an illustrious career ahead of him, but he chose to follow the Lord - what will you do with your life? God can and will use you - if you let Him.
Dr. Luke – 2nd November 2008 am
The character we will look at today wrote more of the New Testament than anyone else – any guesses who it is?
Who is Luke?
It has been suggested that Luke may have been one of the two Greeks who desired to see Jesus about the time of the raising of Lazarus John 12:20-21 And there were certain Greeks among them that came up to worship at the feast:  The same came therefore to Philip, which was of Bethsaida of Galilee, and desired him, saying, Sir, we would see Jesus.
It has also been suggested that he was a slave in the household of Theophilus, and that his master had arranged for his training as a physician. It is said that when Luke became a Christian that he told his master about Christ and as a result of his conversion he gave Luke his freedom. This would account for the reason of Luke dedicating both his books to a beloved benefactor.
The man from Macedonia Acts 16:10, it is even possible that he was a fellow student with Paul in Tarsus.
It has also been suggested that Luke could be the “brother” whose praise was in all the churches 2 Corinthians 8:16-18 (Titus’ brother)
When we actually turn to the Scriptures we see that Luke is only mentioned three times.
I. Committed (Submissive) – Colossians 4:14
There can be no doubt about Luke’s scholarship. By birth he was both a Greek and a pagan. We see Paul speaking in this passage about those who are of the circumcision that is the Jewish believers, and other Christians, the Gentile Christians is the group where he places Luke.
This sets Luke apart. He was the only author, among all those that the Holy Spirit used to write the Bible, who was a Gentile.
You may think that God can only use pastors, deacons, teachers, etc…. God can use you……
At the end of Paul’s third missionary journey, he made his way to Jerusalem. We know that this trip ended up with imprisonment at Caesarea. Luke seems to have been with Paul at this time and it’s amazing how the Holy Spirit uses a seemingly bad situation for God’s glory.
Luke now has the opportunity to talk to anyone and everyone who had firsthand knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Maybe he met with Mary, the Lord’s mother, and she unburdened her heart and told him how it had all happened.
We can picture him going to talk with the officials at Herod’s court, his close friendship with Theophilus would no doubt open the right doors for him. He would spend some time with Philip the evangelist who now lived in Caesarea with his daughters. He would talk to the disciples of John the Baptist.
Whilst at Jerusalem, of course, he would spend as much time as possible with the apostles. Then he would find the people that Jesus had healed, those who had heard Him speak. The Gaderene maniac, the widow of Nain, the woman with the issue of blood, the Samaritan leper who had returned to give thanks, Jarius and his daughter, the young boy who had given his lunch to the Lord. He would find blind Bartimaeus and Zacchaeus, the soldier who crucified Christ. His material grew and grew.
Maybe he had Mark’s gospel in his hands, well read and underlined with his own notes in the margin. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Perhaps he would hurry back to Paul with his latest findings and the two would discuss the stories and Luke would just write…
Luke tells us of six miracles of the Lord that no one else mentions. He records 35 parables altogether 19 of which are only mentioned in his gospel. If the Holy Spirit had never inspired Luke to write we would never have known about the Good Samaritan, the rich fool, the prodigal son, the rich steward or the rich man and Lazarus.
Luke emphasises faith and repentance, mercy and forgiveness. He is fond of words like grace, salvation and Saviour. John Phillips says that “Luke has a Pauline view of Calvary,” His gospel illustrates Paul’s concept of justification by faith.
We are not told exactly when Luke first met Paul but from Acts 16:10 the narrative is moved from “they” to “we.” This indicates that Luke was now a member of the missionary team.
With Luke’s acquaintance with Paul and therefore many of the leading figures in Jerusalem, he was well qualified to write the book of Acts. It story narrative starts at Jerusalem and ends in Rome. It begins with Pentecost and ends in a prison.
The book of Acts forms the essential link between the Gospels and the Epistles. Without it we would be mystified by many things. We have letters written to churches in such places as Rome, Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, Thessalonica, and Philippi. But without the book of Acts, we would have no idea how these churches came about.