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LUKE - Christ, the Savior of the World
A Bible Study Course on the Gospel of Christ according to Luke


1. The Announcement of John the Baptist's Birth (Luke 1:5-25)

LUKE 1:5-7
5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the priestly division of Abijah. He had a wife of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. 6 They were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord. 7 But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they both were well advanced in years.

Herod, the First was a ruthless cruel king who came from Edom and reigned over the Jews. He helped the Romans in their battle in Egypt, and by subtle flattery and timely support won imperial favor as their agent, which made him bitterly hated by his people. Herod was well-known to the Roman officials, for he flattered Caesar by building cities named in his honor in the Greek fashion thus draining the funds of his people. He terrified them, though he had built the glorious temple in Jerusalem to gratify them.

In the midst of hatred, colonization and clamorous currents, the priests of God lived in humility and offered daily sacrifices to God in order to reconcile the sinful nation to him knowing that the wrath of the Holy One is revealed against all ungodliness of men. One thousand years before Christ, King David divided the priests into 24 groups each one of which officiated day and night for a complete week before God to atone for sinners. The eighth of those was that of Abijah of the middle rank, which was not responsible for administering all priestly ceremonies.

Zacharias, the priest whose name signifies “God remembers” was married to Elizabeth “God is my oath” who was herself of priestly lineage, of the daughters of Aaron, Moses’ brother. Zacharias’ family was blessed with the justification of daily sacrifices, for no man is righteous of himself.

Their piety and love for God appeared in their wise walking in the commandments of the Lord according to the Law and its interpretation. Thus they lived in humility praying and serving. Their neighbors honored and loved this family from whom the blessing of the Lord came to others. It is a happy thing when those who are joined to each other in marriage are both joined to the Lord. Grace for grace comes out of this couple to those around them.

No sanctification without keeping the commandments, and no justification without sacrifice. Through these principles of the Old Testament, sanctification and justification, Luke leads us to the faith of the New Testament which is superior to that of the old, for Christ justified us by his sacrifice and the Holy Spirit sanctifies us to keep the commandments.

Luke began his gospel with a report around the temple and ended it (Luke 24:53) inside the temple, showing reverence towards the “house” or dwelling of God in the Old Testament until the Jews refused the reconciliation in Christ and the Romans ruined the temple entirely when God had left it according to the prophecy in the Book of Ezekiel.

During their prayers, Zacharias and Elizabeth felt the coming wrath of God several times, for he did not give them children. They suffered from loneliness in their old age and considered their barrenness as a shame on them. Yet in their particular daily brokenness they remained righteous. They did not walk arrogantly because of their own righteousness, but laid their hope completely upon the grace. God does not leave the humble who prays, but knows the cries of his heart and answers him in due time.

PRAYER: Our Lord, we thank you for your saints in the Old Testament who walked before you with broken hearts and believed in their sanctification through sacrifices. Please forgive us our haughtiness and help us in your coming wrath for the sake of the sacrifice of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit.

QUESTION 7: How did Luke arrange his gospel in relation to the Old Testament?


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