The Gospel of Luke
Like the contents of the previous Gospels we may also divide those of Luke’s into five parts:
I. The Advent of the Divine Man, 1 :-4:13. After stating his aim the evangelist describes the announcement from heaven of the forerunner, John the Baptist, and of Christ himself, and their birth with the attendant circumstances, 1: 1-2: 20. Then he shows that Christ was made subject to the law in circumcision, in the presentation in the temple, and in his journey to Jerusalem, 2: 21-52. He traces the descent of the Son of Man to Adam, and points out that He was prepared for his work by baptism and temptation, 3: 1 4: 13.
II. The Work of the Divine Man for the Jewish World, 4: 14- 9: 50. In this part we first see Christ preaching in the synagogues of Nazareth, Capernaum and all Galilee; performing many miracles in Capernaum and by the sea of Galilee, such as the curing of Peter’s motherin- law, the wonderful draught of fishes, the cleansing of the leper, and the healing of the palsied man; calling Levi to follow him; and instructing his enemies regarding his authority, his purpose, and the moral character of his demands, as a result of which many were amazed and Pharisees and Scribes were filled with hatred, 4: 14 6: 11. After a night of prayer the Lord now chooses his twelve disciples and proclaims the constitution of his Kingdom, 6:12- 49. He cures the centurion s servant, raises the widow’s son, and gives instruction by word and example regarding the nature of his work and the character of the subjects of his Kingdom, 7:149. The origin of the Kingdom is now illustrated in the parable of the sower, and the divine power of Christ over both the natural and the spiritual world is shown in the stilling of the storm, in the deliverance of the Gadarene demoniac, in his curing the woman with the issue of blood and raising the daughter of Jairus, 8:1-56. The twelve are sent out and on their return Christ retires with them to a desert place, where He miraculously feeds the five thousand, after which He once and again announced his future suffering and was transfigured on the Mount, 9:1-50.
III. The Work of the Divine Man for the Gentiles, 9: 51-18: 30. Jesus in traveling towards Jerusalem sends messengers before him, but these are rejected by the Samaritans; then He sends out the seventy, who return with a good report, teaches that neighborly love is not to be restricted to the Jews (good Samaritan), and gives his disciples instruction regarding prayer, 9: 51-11:13. The Pharisees now claim that Christ casts out the devils through Beelzebub, in answer to which He pictures their condition, and when they tempt him in various ways, pronounces his woe upon them and warns his disciples against them, 11: 14- 12 :12. In connection with the parable of the rich fool the Lord warns against covetousness and anxious care, and bids his disciples to be prepared for the day of his coming, 12:13-53. Sitting at meat in the house of a Pharisee, He teaches those present true mercy, true humility, true hospitality, and the fact that they, having refused the supper of the Lord, will be rejected, 14:1-24. Next the necessity of self-denial is impressed on those that would follow Jesus, and in three parables the Pharisees are made acquainted with the real purpose of his coming, 14: 25-15: 32. The disciples are instructed in the careful use of their earthly possessions, and to the Pharisees the law of retribution is explained, 16:1-31. In various ways the Lord impresses on his followers the necessity of a forgiving spirit, of humility, of faith and gratitude, of constant prayer with a view to the unexpected character of his coming, of trusting in God and of selfdenial, all ending in everlasting salvation, 17:1 18: 30.
IV. The Sacrifice of the Divine Man for all Mankind, 18:31-23 :49. Jesus announces once more his future suffering and death, at Jericho restores the sight of a blind man and calls Zaccheus, and points out to his followers that his Kingdom would not immediately come, 18: 32-19: 27. Triumphantly He enters Jerusalem, where He cleanses the temple, answers the questions of the Chief Priests, the Scribes, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and instructs his followers regarding his future coming, 19: 28-21 :38. After eating the passover with his disciples He was betrayed, condemned and crucified, 22:1 23:56.
V. The Divine Man Saviour of all Nations, 24. On the morning of the first day Christ arose; women seek him in the grave; He appears to two of his disciples on the way to Emmaus, to the eleven, and finally departs from them with the promise of the Spirit.