Luke Chapter 4
The Temptation of Jesus.
(Read Luke 4:1-13)
Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness where he was tempted by Satan for forty days. He met each temptation as a man. This enables Jesus to sympathize with the weakness of humanity (Hebrews 4:15). He models for us to trust the Lord to provide strength. Jesus quoted Scriptures each time to overcome the temptations (Deuteronomy 8:3; 6:16; 10:20). He models for us to trust the Father to provide power to resist Satan rather than making own decisions to encounter Satan. In each of the three temptations, the Devil presents half-truth. Jesus brought Glory to God by defeating the devil in his temptations by quoting the promises of God. Jesus was tempted in the areas of the lust of the flesh, the lust of eyes and in the pride of life. Jesus never stepped out of the will of the Father to do anything. These are the temptations we are also facing today (1 John 2:16). When the Devil had finished tempting Jesus, he left him until the next opportunity came. Only Luke records that Satan tempted Jesus again and again. Matthew and Mark record that angels were sent to minister Christ. Christians should battle temptations by prayerfully meditating on the promises of God (Psalms 119:11). They should seek God's help to overcome temptation. God allows testing in our lives to improve and prove our character. To know more about Jesus’ temptations, read notes on Matthew 4:1-11.
The Ministry of Jesus in Galilee: 4:14-44.
(Read Luke 4:14-44)
After the temptations, Jesus returned to Galilee. In Luke chapter 4:14 to 9:50, we read about Jesus' ministry in Galilee. He taught in the synagogue and said "Today the scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing"(Isaiah 61:1-2). “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord” (Luke 4:18-19). He preached the gospel to the afflicted and needy. Jesus came to bring freedom from the bondage of sin. He gives sight to the spiritually blind and sets free those who are oppressed. This was a fulfillment of a prophecy (Isaiah 61:1-2). Jesus stopped his reading before the passage describing the coming judgment. People marveled at the gracious words Jesus spoke. Those who humble and recognize their sinfulness will receive God’s grace and experience spiritual liberty in Jesus. They become a new creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). Their restoration is already underway and will be brought to completion at the return of Christ. Unfortunately, people of Nazareth did not believe Jesus and sought to throw him down from a cliff. Read notes on Mark 6:1-6. But Jesus slipped away through the crowd unhindered. Then Jesus came to Capernaum and taught several Sabbaths in the synagogue. People were astonished at his teaching because he spoke with authority. They witnessed his power over demonic forces and illness. But religious leaders rejected his claims. People were eager to hear and see Jesus. Jesus healed Peter’s mother-in-law. Miracles were done to authenticate the message he spoke. Read notes on Mark 1:21-34. Jesus went into a desert place to pray. Jesus recognized the importance of prayer in his ministry. People begged Jesus not to leave them. But Jesus said “I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God in other places too; for I was sent for this purpose”. We are commanded to preach the gospel even to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8). Our mission is to make disciples for Christ. Sad to say this mission has taken a back seat in the church today. The gospel tells us that Christ came to help those who cannot help themselves.