Thursday, November 17, 2016

Luke Summary

Instant reprise for next Sunday's last RCL Luke Year C SS class for 2016.

• We've journeyed together through another year of grace; this time we've enjoyed twelve months of gospel readings from the gentile physician Luke, with a few from John interspersed.

• Most likely Luke substantially compiled the two New Testament books of Luke and Acts (of the Apostles), though he drew upon sources other than memories of his own experiences and his own imagination. Luke includes about 50% of the exact content of Mark's gospel. Both Luke and Matthew probably had another document for the identical materials their gospels present. If that source ever existed it no longer is extant, but scholars sometimes refer to it as Q, from the first word of the German Quelle or river. There also may have been a document speculatively referred to as L for Luke.

• Luke opens his gospel with a political, geographical, social, historical introduction, and with [biblical number] seven witnesses—this really happened!

• These events really happened on planet earth, where creation not only is the physical setting: creation also acts and participates in history. Despite recent interest in the redemption, resurrection, and integrity of all creation – not solely human creatures – most teaching and preaching in the church still centers on humanity, which may not be all that off since for the most part creation needs restoration and resurrection because of human violence and neglect.

• We've discussed how Luke emphasizes women, people who are marginalized / underclass / outcast, history, prayer, the Holy Spirit, table fellowship, great reversals, aka "the upside-down kingdom."

• Among passages unique to Luke we have canticles or songs from Zechariah, Mary, and Simeon based on Old Testament hymns.

• Only Matthew and Luke bring us birth narratives; Luke's is the Sunday School kids' and cherub choir's "Going to Bethlehem" nativity account. Matthew and Luke both have genealogies; Luke's concludes with "Adam, son of God."

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