Manifesto – part 7

on the wall

Luke 4 v 43. “I must preach the good news of the Kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent”

The last few verses of this chapter (chapter 4 v 38 – 44) are full of action on Jesus’s part. There were healings, exorcisms and preaching.

Don’t forget that Luke is writing for the benefit of his friend Theophilus, to verify for him who Jesus was. The picture Theophilus was getting from Luke up to this point must have been mind boggling. Who could believe such things unless they came from an impeccable source. That is why Luke was a diligent and scrupulous historian who took great pains to make sure the stories he wrote down, were true. (Luke 1 v 3,4)

So chapter 4 of Luke’s Gospel gives us a picture of Jesus doing what he said he would do. People oppressed by illness or the devil were healed which was a sign of what he would do for people spiritually when he had risen from the dead.

When Jesus sought solitude he was interrupted by noisy needy crowds. No doubt many came to him only for healing. But Jesus himself gives us his priority “I must preach the good news of the Kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent (v 43) Remember chapter 4 v 18? “…he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor….”

Jesus came to proclaim the ‘year of the Lord’s favour.’ In him and through him people would now be accepted by God once again. So Jesus saw Himself at that time of his ministry, as a preacher of the good news. Here is the strange thing. To preach the good news Jesus had to preach himself as the embodiment of the good news. He had to present Himself as the Saviour and so as the story unfolds Luke traces the increasing hostility to Jesus until we get his final rejection.

All these things Theophilus had to read and digest. So must you and so must I. A remarkable story of a man who claimed to be the good news and demands our allegiance. Does he have it?


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