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Christmas Reflections: Walk Through Luke - Chapter 6



The Gospel of Luke tells of the origins, birth, ministry, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ.


December 6

Day 6

Luke chapter 6

There are 24 chapters in this book

They bring us through the story of Jesus - the reason for this season.


I also include in the bottom or comments some “extras” like short videos and songs that you may have never heard (or artists you may not know) that resonate with me during this holiday time.


Each post will start with who is who so that you can get a solid understanding of what this chapter is about. I encourage you to read the chapter in your own Bible after you read this. If you don’t have a Bible there are lots of free apps. I use several versions in my studying to ensure I have a full understanding of what I’ve read.


This is my commentary.


Who was Luke?

A physician, a researcher, a traveling friend of Paul (mentioned in Colossians 4:14; 2 Timothy 4:11; Philemon 1:24), perhaps someone researching facts to help the legal case for Paul while in prison in Rome, a non-Jew, the only Gentile author of a book in the New Testament. He penned not only Luke, but also Acts.


New characters continue to be introduced - new in this chapter:

* Jesus

* More Pharisees

* Man with a crippled hand

* 12 disciples/followers/apostles

* Large group of unnamed people


WHEAT BREAD

The chapter starts with Jesus and His friends in a wheat field. The disciples were picking wheat, rubbing it in their hands to separate the wheat berry (the good and edible part) from the chaff (the unusable part). For some reason the Pharisees were hanging around and told the group they were breaking the “law” by “working” to separate the wheat. I paused and thought - does wheat grow in the desert and how actually do you process wheat. I found this short 8 min video. Very fascinating to understand the process and the importance of separating the wheat. It may help you visualize what Jesus says next even better. Here’s the video https://youtu.be/bKXQCP1DTic - I won’t have room in this post to go into detail but suffice to say - the good parts - the wheat - also have to get thrashed with the bad parts - the chaff- to loosen that inedible covering. Together they are beaten and then once loose - can be separated. We also go through challenges to be loosened and separated from things that no longer serve us. The chaff has to be removed so that the wheat can be used for the purpose it was created. Lord please remove my chaff and help me to get through the time of separation unharmed.


Jesus used this as an opportunity to remind the group of something that happened in the Old Testament in Samuel. One time David and his friends were hungry and they took (pretty much stole) a loaf of bread from an altar and ate it. The “law” back then said the bread was only allowed for the priests. This was holy bread. The priests could have put him in jail or worse for taking this holy bread. David was hungry. He not only wanted it. He needed it.


Foreshadow - in a few more chapters Jesus will have the last supper with His friends and will break and share bread and have communion with one another. It was a dinner. People were hungry. Food was available. They wanted it. They needed it. They just didn’t know that this holy bread would represent something so much bigger and that it was available in abundance for all people. Without reserve.


Same thing about the field. Food was available. People ate it.


Jesus addresses the group and boldly said “The Son of Man is not a slave to the sabbath. He is in charge.”

The Pharisees were infuriated and confused. They followed the written laws and couldn’t see beyond that to God.

Jesus wasn’t breaking rules. Rules were created by men for men. But Jesus did also establish commandments - love God. Love one another. We don’t do either very well which is why there is so much strife in the world.

WHO IS ABOVE THE LAW

Another Sabbath came around and this time Jesus was preaching somewhere where they all were again. A man with a maimed hand was also there, so these nitpickers were standing by to see if Jesus would “break the law” by healing the man. Funny enough - they were unconsciously breaking the law because they were “working” so hard to condemn Jesus. Think about it. This elitist group of leaders were actually also breaking the same laws they wanted to enforce upon others.


Jesus knew what they were up to so He asked the man to stand in front of them all. He did.

Jesus addressed the group with this poignant message: “what kind of action suits the sabbath the best? Doing good? Or being bad and evil? Helping people? Or leaving them helpless?”

He looked around deeply into the eyes of each person. Then He said to the man “hold your hand out”. Of course he was healed completely and you can imagine how beside themselves the Pharisees were. They even started plotting more of how to get even with Him.


This chapter talks about how we must treat others the way we want to be treated.


ALONE ON A MOUNTAIN

Around that same time Jesus climbed a mountain to be alone and pray to God for the night. Remember last post we talked about how important it was for Jesus to spend time alone talking with his Father. Lord may we also find alone time to be with just You.


The next morning He called up 12 followers and named them His official disciples. They were: Simon (called Peter), Andrew (his brother), James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James (son of Alphaeus), Simon (called the zealot), Judas (son of James), Judas Iscariot (the betrayer).


When they got to the bottom of the mountain there was a large group of people from many villages and with many illnesses clamoring to get close to Jesus to be healed.


He had so much energy and such high vibration that many people were healed that day.


22 LESSON

Here are 22 (my favorite number) important things he also taught that day:

  1. You are blessed when you lose it all, because that’s when God’s kingdom becomes most clear. (I’m a direct testament to that when we lost our entire home and community to the floods in 09, that was a pivotal time when my relationship with God and elevation of discernment started to grow the most and thrive.)

  2. You are blessed when you are really hungry, because that is when you will be most ready to digest the Messianic meal. (Makes sense because when you’re physically hungry you can devour and really enjoy and be filled with an abundance of food and nourishment until you’re full.)

  3. You’re blessed when tears flow freely, because joy comes in the morning. (This is a tough one because “Morning” and light may not come until you leave the dark Earth and get to Heaven. We are “asleep” here now - but one day we will “wake up” and there is where we will have joy.

  4. Count yourself blessed every time someone cuts you down or throws you out, smears or blackens your name to discredit me. Why? What Jesus said is it means that the truth is close at hand and too close for some people to hear. By deflecting negatively on you and causing discomfort - they may think it will make them comfortable. Jesus said - be glad when it happens because even though those people may not like you, Jesus LOVES you and all of Heaven applaud for you. Furthermore Jesus said you’ll be in good company since all his preachers and witnesses were treated the same.

  5. You may live a comfortable life now, but will have trouble if you think “you’ve made it” for then that is all you’ll ever have. He wants to give us an abundant life.

  6. If you think you alone can do everything, you’ll have trouble since that cannot sustain. It’s He who fills.

  7. Life is not just fun and games. You’ll have trouble ahead if you ignore that you will have some sufferings that will need to be met.

  8. If you only live for the approval of others by flattering them and doing things that indulge them, you’ll have trouble ahead. Popularity contests aren’t truth contests. He even said “look at how many scoundrel preachers were approved by your ancestors.” Your task in life is to be TRUE, which doesn’t always mean popular.

  9. He went on to say “for those of you ready for the truth - listen carefully. Love your enemies and people who want to hurt you. Let them bring out the best in you, not bring you down to them and their level to bring out your worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer for that person. If they slap you don’t slap them back. If they grab your shirt, gift wrap your coat and gift it to them as well. If they take unfair advantage of you, use the experience to practice the servant life. Pray for people who give you pain. No more tit for tat - just live generously.

  10. Let’s continue to get through the next this. They’re all related to being a good worker, leader, friend, and family member. Then Jesus said “here’s a rule of thumb: ask yourself what do you want people to do for you? Why not take the initiative and try doing it for them.

  11. If you only love the lovable, do you expect a pat in the back? They’re easy to love.

  12. If you only help people who help you, do you want an award?

  13. If you only give what you hope to get, then is that even charity?

  14. Be easy on people and you might find life easy on you.

  15. Love your enemies

  16. Help and give without expecting in return

  17. Don’t condemn when people are down as it may boomerang back to you

  18. Don’t pick on people and criticize unless you want that treatment back

  19. Give your life away and you’ll find life given back, not just given back - given back overflowing with bonus and blessing

  20. Giving, not getting, is the way

  21. It’s easy to find fault in others while being oblivious to our own. Don’t act like you know better than anyone else - just live your part in life. If you wipe the sneer off your own face first, then you can hand the cloth to someone else in need

  22. You don’t get rotten apples off a good tree and you don’t get good apples off a diseased tree. The health of the apple tells the health of the tree. Begin with your own life - it’s who you ARE not what you say that counts. Actions speak louder than words.


NO REGRETS

You’ll never (Jesus said never) regret it when you live out this God-created identity in your life. Why? Because that’s the way God lives for us - generously and graciously even when we don’t deserve it. He is kind. You be kind.


BEWARE OF FALLING

Then Jesus quoted a Proverb, “can a blind man guide a blind man? No - they’ll both end up in a ditch. An apprentice doesn’t lecture a master, so be careful who you follow as a teacher and what you say. (Many people even today get caught up in motivational speakers - it’s not a bad idea to pray and discern if that person is “blind” or not.)


FIRM FOUNDATION

Lastly Jesus addressed the people at the foundation level and said “don’t say you’ll obey God and then not do a thing you read here.

These words are not just additions to your life. They are foundational words to build your life on.

To be a person of integrity and built to last - dig down deep. These words must be the foundation your life is built on so that nothing can shake you. He compared it to a good and reputable home builder. This person lays down the rebar and concrete and foundation before walls are built. He then compared to a shabby builder who doesn’t take care with the foundation and ends up with a disaster and a house that will crumble.


If you just read these words today and “like the post” and don’t actually work them into your life, you’re like that shabby contractor who builds a house without a foundation underneath it.

It’s your choice.

A good person keeps good things in his mind.



PRAYER

Lord thank you for your word and for these lessons. May I not just read and write them, but live them to the full. Help me to see you more clearly and acknowledge the blessings in disguise in life. Help me to pray more, be kinder and more patient with people who irritate me. Thank you for loving me even when I’m unlovely. Help me to give more and to be open to receiving more. Thank you for forgiving me more than 70x7. Help me to lead myself and others in a way that brings you joy. Thank you for laying my foundation. May I build a house of my life that points to you and brings you glory. Amen


Tomorrow - chapter 7



MUSIC - the universal language

Here’s a song to welcome us to this day:

Firm Foundation - Cody Carnes


And one more about this chapter




EXTRAS:

Here is a video/audio depiction of this chapter. Perhaps it will help to resonate even stronger for you.

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