Summary: How about we take a look at the gospel of Luke.
1. Kurt Kaiser wrote, the hymn Pass it on.
“It only takes a spark to get a fire going
And soon all those around can warm up in its glowing.
That’s how it is with Gods love, once you’ve experienced it
You spread His love to everyone; you want to pass it on.”
2. There were some believers who has been set on fire by Christ Himself, they passed that onto Luke, who in turns passed it on to Theophilus, who obviously passed it on to the
Church at large [Luke/Acts], and in the next few months, I will pass it onto you, in hopes that you will pass it on too.
3. Pass it on.
Luke 1:1-4 (NKJV)
1 Inasmuch as many have taken in hand to set in order a narrative of those things which have been fulfilled among us,
2 just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word delivered them to us,
3 it seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you an orderly account, most excellent Theophilus,
4 that you may know the certainty of those things in which you were instructed.
I. First, he was Indebted to Eyewitnesses. 1:1-2
A. The Investigation. [Luke was a good historian]
1. Many Eyewitnesses – we get our English word autopsy from this Greek word.
Lit. “Seeing with one’s own eye.” These were people who saw Jesus with own eyes.
1 John 1:1-3 (NKJV)
1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life--
2 the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us--
3 that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.
2. Many Ministers of the word – there is one article in Greek, making there one and the same.
Bible Handbook, “As the number of Jesus followers grew, and Christian groups sprang up in many places after Jesus death, it soon became apparent that the stories and teaching of Jesus which were circulating by word of mouth must be written down.”
B. The Inspiration. 2 Tim. 3:16-17
to write to you – v. 3
Crawford, “Why would the Holy Spirit allow an inspired writer to research sources and gather material when every word of Scriptures is from God? The difficulty is in the mind of the questioner, for he is confusing the instrument with the product. God used many different methods to disclose His truth (Heb.1:1), but the doctrine of inspiration applies to the writings of Scripture (2 Pet. 1:21).”
Trans: Point, believers who has personal contact with Jesus passed on that information to Luke and others. At the beginning of the Reformation, Martin of Basle, from Switzerland came to see the truth of Justification by faith in Christ alone. He was saved, but because of the formal church he was afraid to share that truth.
He wrote down these words: “O merciful Christ, I know that I can be saved only by the merit of Thy blood. Holy Jesus I love you.” And then removed a stone from the wall and hit it there! It was not discovered for more then 100 years.
Martin Luther discovered the same truth but instead of hiding it, he passed it on.
II. Furthermore, it was Intended for a most Excellent. 3
A. His Importance.
Most excellent Theophilus – theo = God; phileo = love, thus it has the idea of one who loves God or is a God lover.
Most excellent is used of high Roman officials – Ac. 24:3; 26:25
B. His need for Reassurance. 4
that you may know the certainty of – from this we can assume that Theophilus was already a believer, and this was sort of a follow-up information.
Swindoll, “It’s one thing to help deliver a newborn Christian into God’s family, but it’s another thing entirely to safety bring up that baby believer in the Lord. In Luke’s day, false teachers roamed the cities like bandits, stealing away defenseless minds. “Feel-good” religious clichés wouldn’t be strong enough to safeguard Theophilus; so Luke set out to surround him with rock solid truth, providing him a sheltered place in which to grow.”
So we have Luke Passing it on to Theophilus…
2 Timothy 2:2 (NKJV)
2 And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.