Summary of Luke

Summary of Luke

Like the books of Matthew and Mark, we learn from the Book of Luke the stories of the birth of Jesus Christ and John the Baptist. Luke tells us that the angel Gabriel appears to Zechariah, telling him that his wife Elizabeth, formerly barren, is pregnant. Soon afterward, Gabriel appears to Elizabeth’s relative, the Virgin Mary, telling her that she too is going to give birth to a child by the Power of the Holy Ghost.

Mary and Joseph travel from their home in Nazareth to Bethlehem to pay taxes to Herod, it is in Bethlehem, in a manger, Jesus is born. Later in a younger age, Jesus was found instructing older men of great wisdom in the temple. Once Jesus grows to the age of about 30, He is baptized in the desert of Judea by John the Baptist.  John is soon imprisoned by Herod, the ruler of the northern Galilee region.

We learn of Jesus’s genealogy, stretching back to the first man, Adam, who is said to be “… the son of God.” (Luke 3:38). We are told of Satan unsuccessfully testing Jesus for forty days in the wilderness. Upon returning from being tempted in the wilderness, Jesus begins his ministry. He is rejected in his hometown of Nazareth and takes to wandering throughout Galilee, where he works many miracles, including casting out devils.

•    In Chapters 1-4: Luke writes a very detailed account of the birth of Jesus, a common Christmas story, yet always fascinating. He then explains John the Baptist’s preparation for the coming Messiah and the baptism of Jesus Christ.

•    In Chapters 5-21: We learn of the ministry of Jesus. As Jesus travels, He teaches, preaches, heals the sick, and brings hope to the desperate and discouraged. He was also seeking those who were obedient and faithful, such as the Roman Centurion who sincerely pleads with Jesus to heal his servant from a far distance, “…say in a word, and my servant shall be healed.” (Luke 7:7). Jesus met many religious leaders who relentlessly opposed Him and constantly tried to trick and kill Him.

•    In Chapters 22-24: Jesus is betrayed by one of His own (Judas). He was unlawfully convicted by a dishonest and hateful court, and sentenced to crucifixion. However, death could not hold Him and after three days He resurrected and arose from the grave, just as He had miraculously raised others during His ministry.

Luke 24

Luke 24: He Lives!

                Early in the morning days after the death of Jesus Christ, some of His followers (including Mary Magdelene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James) came to His sepulchre [tomb] to anoint Him with spices. Upon approaching the tomb, they found the stone, which sealed the tomb was rolled back and when they went in, they did not find the body of Jesus Christ. The followers were confused, but they found two men who were wearing shining garments, who told them; “…Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen…” (Luke 24:5-6) The two men [or angels] reminded the followers that Jesus had told them exactly what would happen; “…The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.” (Luke 24:7)

When the followers heard these words, they remembered. The followers left to tell the Eleven Apostles, but the Apostles thought they were listening to idle tales, and did not believe. Peter ran to the tomb to see for himself; but departed wondering what would happen.

Later, on the way down to a village named Emmaus two of the Apostles walked while discussing the things that had happened. While walking a man approached them and began to speak to them, this man was Jesus Christ, but the two Apostles did not know Him. Jesus asks them why they are sad, and what the reason is for their communication. The two Apostles are flabbergasted as to why this ‘man’ would ask them these questions, they begin to tell Him about the ministry of Jesus and how He was crucified. Jesus responds; “…O fools, and slow of heart to believe… Ought not Christ to have suffered these things…” (Luke 24:25-26) Jesus explains that He has further to walk, but with the evening approaching, the two Apostles invite this ‘man’ to stay with them for the night. While with them, He breaks bread and communes with them, after He is done breaking bread, he disappeared. Upon realizing that the ‘man’ who was with them was Jesus and He had now left after breaking bread with them, they were perplexed; “…Did not our heart burn within us while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened t us the scriptures?” (Luke 24:32) Essentially the two Apostles were upset that they were so blind to not even see Jesus!

The two Apostles return to Jerusalem and proclaim to the other Apostles that Jesus had indeed Risen! While they were speaking, Jesus enters and says to them; “…Peace be unto you. But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? And why do thoughts arise in your hearts? Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.” (Luke 24:39) While the Apostles were in shock and were wondering what they had just seen, Jesus asks them; “…Have ye here any meat? And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. And he took it, and did eat before them.” (Luke 24:41-43)

Here is an important Doctrinal Truth: Jesus Christ has a glorified body of flesh and bones, just like we have as humans. Jesus told His Apostles to touch Him for He had flesh and bones, and He even asked them for food, so that He could eat. Jesus then “…opened… their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures… Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day… that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things.” (Luke 24:45-48) Jesus opens their understanding, so that the Apostles and all those who follow Him can understand the scriptures and know the truth. Jesus had told the people He would be persecuted to death and rise again on the third day, but even then when it happens the Apostles did not believe Him. Jesus explains that His death had to happen, in order to open the door to a remission of sins and the start of missionary work throughout the world, starting in Jerusalem.

Jesus died for ALL of us, that we might be saved. In order to be truly saved, we must follow Jesus, and all His teachings. We cannot follow Him, if we do not follow His commandments and teachings. Jesus is lifted up into heaven and the Apostles rejoiced and worshipped Him in the temple.

Luke 23

Luke 23: Crucifixion of Jesus Christ

                Jesus Christ is led to speak with Pilate, who finds no fault in Him. When Pilate finds that Jesus was from the area of Galilee, governed by Herod, he sends Jesus to him, because he had jurisdiction. Herod and his men mocked Jesus and arraigned Him in a gorgeous robe as an insult to the “King”, Herod sends Jesus back to Pilate. Pilate confirms again that he has found no fault in Jesus, but as tradition he must release one prisoner at the feast. The people cry out for Jesus to be crucified, and after Pilate made it clear that he found no fault, he gives into the demands of the people and releases Barabbas instead of Jesus.

Jesus is sentenced, without trial to be crucified and Pilate “washes his hands of the situation”, as to not be held accountable for the death of Jesus. After beating Jesus almost to death they force Him to carry His own cross to Calvary to be crucified, but so weak, the soldiers ordered a man named Simon to carry His cross for Him. On His walk to imminent death, women follow Him wailing, He comforts them and tells them; “…Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children.” (Luke 23:28) Jesus knew that there soon would come great calamities. Jesus is crucified between two thieves, and cries out to His Father; “…Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do…” (Luke 23:34) Jesus knew that the people were limited in their light and knowledge and because of the hardness of their hearts, they knew not what they were doing; crucifying their Lord and Savior.

Those gathered to witness this atrocious act of the murder of Jesus Christ mock Him and tell Him that if He was the Christ, He could save Himself. Above His head read a sign; “…THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.” (Luke 23:38) Jesus soon gave up the ghost, but before he turned to the two criminals being crucified with Him and said; “…To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43) Jesus commended His Spirit unto the Father and died.

After the death of Jesus, a man named Joseph went and asked for the body from Pilate, who granted his wishes that Jesus have a proper burial in a sepulchre, in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea.

Luke 22

Luke 22: The Atonement

                The Passover was approaching, and Judas Iscariot was possessed by Satan, who led him to the chief priests who desired to kill Jesus, Judas agrees to betray Him for money.

In preparation for the Passover, Jesus commands that Peter and John go to a nearby city where they would meet a man with a pitcher of water who would lead them to an upper room that was furnished for them. Peter and John go, and find the man with the pitcher and the furnished upper room, as Jesus had described. Later, Jesus meets up with them and instructs the Apostles on the Sacrament;

“…he took the bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.  Likewise also the cup… This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.” (Luke 22:19-20) Jesus instructed them saying that the Bread was His body and the wine (or water) was a representation of His blood, which was shed for them (or would be soon shed for them).

In the Book of Mormon we are given specific prayers that should be used today for blessing the bread and water;

Bread:

“O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this bread to the souls of all those who partake of it; that they may have a remembrance of the body of thy Son, and witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him, and keep his commandments which he hath given them, that they may always have the Spirit to be with them. Amen.” (Moroni 4:3; The Book of Mormon)

Water:

“O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this wine [water]  to the souls of all those who drink of it; that they may do it in remembrance of the blood of thy Son, which was shed for them; that they may witness unto thee, O God the Eternal Father, that they do always remember him, that they may have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.” (Moroni 5:2; The Book of Mormon)

Jesus predicts that evil shall befall his betrayer [Judas Iscariot]. Jesus intervenes in an argument about who is the most important disciple; Jesus explains to them that he who does the most service is the greatest among them. Jesus goes on to explain that the disciples will sit on thrones in God’s kingdom, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. Jesus tells Peter that before the night is over he will betray Him three times, by denying Him.

Jesus goes to pray on the Mount of Olives, and asks His Father; “…if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine be done.” (Luke 22:42) An Angel was sent from heaven to strengthen Jesus and support Him. Jesus finishes praying and finds His Apostles sleeping, when they were supposed to keep lookout. Jesus tells them that they will need to pray, during this discussion some men come with Judas and Judas kisses Jesus to help the men he was with identify Him. Peter cuts of the right ear of the high priest, trying to protect Jesus. Jesus then heals the ear immediately, but is still arrested, taken and beaten. Jesus is brought before the Sanhedrin and is mocked and is asked; “Art thou the Christ?” and He responded “…If I tell you, ye will not believe.” (Luke 22:67)

Jesus is smitten and mocked, all because the people’s hearts had been hardened and could not see the amazing miracles performed by Him.

Luke 21

Luke 21: The End of the World

                Jesus saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury of the Temple, He also saw an old lady who cast in two mites. Jesus then tells those around Him that the old widow had donated more into the treasury then all the rich, because she had given everything she had!

Jesus then explains that Jerusalem and the Temple would soon be destroyed. Those who followed Him, asked Him when this might be. Jesus tells them; “…the time draweth near…when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified; for these things must first come to pass… nation shall rise against nation… great earthquakes…famines… pestilences… they shall… persecute you…for my name’s sake.” (Luke 21:8-12)

                Jesus explains that the signs of the Second Coming will be when we hear of wars and see great natural disasters and the spread of disease.  Jesus tells His followers to not worry, for these things are all part of the master plan. He calms them; “Settle it therefore in your hearts not to meditate before what ye shall answer. For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist… In your patience possess ye your souls.” (Luke 21:14-15,19) Jesus was basically saying that we don’t need to worry about what we need to do, because God will give us wisdom, to confound even our enemies. If we are patient, we will overcome.

Jesus continues to prophesy of the Last Days;

“…when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh… there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the starts; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear… And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.” (Luke 21:20; 25-27)

                Right before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, the world will show signs in the heavens, armies will fill the Middle East, the seas will be roaring and men’s hearts shall fail them as nations fall into distress. Then after all that, the world will see Jesus Christ return to the earth in His glory. Jesus advises His followers to “…pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things.” (Luke 21:36) Essentially, bad things will happen in the Last Days, but those who follow the Lord, follow
His commandments and pray always will escape the nightmares of the world in distress at His Second Coming.

Luke 20

Luke 20: Caesar and God

                Jesus is asked by what Authority He is able to perform the many miracles, Jesus then asks them; “The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men?” (Luke 20:4) And the people didn’t know how to answer, because if they said of men, then the people who believed and followed Jesus would get mad, because they thought of John as a prophet. They reasoned a bit more and thought that if they say it was from heaven, then Jesus would ask them why they don’t believe in His works. So after some time they tell Jesus that they cannot answer His question, and He responds; “…Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.” (Luke 20:8)

                Jesus then tells of the Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen;

                “…A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time. And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty.

And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty.

And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out. Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.

But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him…” (Luke 20:9-15)

In this Parable, God creates the world and gives men to rule over it, but he sends servants (the Prophets) to check up on those who are entreated to protect and take care of the world and others. After several attempts, God sends His Only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ… but they too kill him. Jesus then asks those gathered, if the Son was killed, how much more of punishments will the Father give, when he returns?

Those gathered against Jesus, sought to kill Him, but feared the retaliation of His followers, so they left… but sent spies to watch Him.

Some, trying to tempt Jesus asked; “Is it lawful for us to give a tribute unto Cæsar, or no? But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye me? Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it? They answered and said, Cæsar’s. And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Cæsar the things which be Cæsar’s, and unto God the things which be God’s.” (Luke 20:22-25)

The people marveled at His answer and kept their silence. Then one of the Sadducees came and tempted Jesus with questions of the Resurrection;  

“…Master, Moses wrote unto us, If any man’s brother die, having a wife, and he die without children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.

                There were therefore seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and died without children. And the second took her to wife, and he died childless. And the third took her; and in like manner the seven also: and they left no children, and died. Last of all the woman died also. Therefore in the resurrection whose wife of them is she? for seven had her to wife.” (Luke 20:28-33)

Jesus answered them and taught about the Law of Marriage “…The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage: But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection. Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him.” (Luke 20:34-38)

Essentially in the next life Marriage would not be performed, but if the wife had married all the brothers, then God would sort those things out.

Luke 19

Luke 19: Jesus came to Save souls

                Jesus entered and passed through Jericho, and while there a man named Zachhaeus, who was chief among the publicans desired to see Him. Zaachaeus was a very wealthy man, but short and had to climb up a sycamore tree to get the attention of Jesus, otherwise he would have been hidden in the great crowd gathered for Jesus. While passing by the tree, Jesus tells Zaachaeus to come down, for He needed to use his house. Zaachaeus, being fearful of the Lord told Him that he had given half of his wealth to the needy and always gave 4x back to anyone who he wronged. Jesus tells him that he doesn’t need to worry about his sins, for He came to “…save that which was lost.” (Luke 19:10)

                Jesus then gives the Parable of the Pounds;

“…A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return… he called his ten servants, and delivered to them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us… when he was returned, having received the kingdom…commanded these servants to be called unto him… that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds. And he said… Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities. And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds. And he said likewise to him, Be thou over five cities. And another came, saying, Lord. Behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept…” (Luke 19:12-20)

                All ten servants were given one pound each, the first made nine pounds and the second four pounds. The last servant made nothing, for he feared the man and did not want to lose the pound, so he did nothing with it. This Parable is similar to the Parable of the Talents, we should make the best out of our situation and never bury or hide something, we have endless opportunities and possibilities as mankind… make the best of it!

After telling the Parable, Jesus tells His Apostles to fetch Him a Colt that would be tied to door in a nearby village. So the Apostles go and grab the Colt, so that Jesus can ride it into Jerusalem. While in Jerusalem Jesus cleanses the Temple of evil, where the men have turned the house of prayer into “…a den of thieves.” (Luke 19:46)