Friday, December 4, 2015

All For One..

Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eye-witnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught. ~ Luke 1:1-4

In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. ~ Acts 1:1-2

Luke is an obscure figure in the New Testament. We know little more than that he companioned the apostle Paul as a co-missionary and personal physician. Were Luke alive today and had access to social media, I feel safe to say he would not have been regularly uploading his latest "selfie" of himself. That's pretty significant when you consider that he penned the longest of the Gospels, and that if you sit down and read his Gospel and the Book of Acts, when finished, you will have read more than twenty-five percent of the New Testament. Nearly half of what Luke recorded in his Gospel goes unmentioned by Matthew's and Mark's Gospels.

But here is one more thing that struck me...

As Luke bent over his parchment with quill in hand to write his Gospel--an account of the life of Christ on earth, and The Book of Acts--his account of Christ's work on earth from heaven, a single individual was on his mind, Theophilus. Theophilus is as obscure as Luke. We know very little about this Gentile--except that Luke (also a Gentile) traipsed all over Palestine to compile "an orderly account" of the eclectic bits and pieces of information Theophilus had gathered about Jesus. Luke trudged the highways and hedges interviewing those who were eye-witnesses to the life of the crucified, risen, and ascended Savior.

Isn't it obvious? Luke cared dearly for this man, Theophilus.

Luke compiled an exhaustive account of the life of Christ. Is it beyond reason to believe Luke interviewed Mary, the mother of Jesus; the other apostles; many who had been healed by Jesus; the 120 who were in the upper room at Pentecost; the seventy, whom Jesus had sent out, and many of the 500 witnesses Paul speaks of in his letter to the Corinthians who had seen the resurrected Christ? I think not.

Exhaustive and exhausting.

So, I leave anyone who is reading with this encouragement: It's worth it. All that you may be investing in the spiritual well-being of just one.

That one you keep praying for
That one who is always on your mind
That one who is wandering, or lost
That one who is struggling
That one who is seeking, but can't seem to find
That one you can't give up on

That's what Luke's commitment to Theophilus does. It inspires me/us to keep giving it all we've got.

All for one...


   

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