The healing of the centurion’s servant—like the many other miracle accounts in the Gospels—is often understood to be highlighting the faith or belief of the centurion. Indeed, he is an admirable character, one to whom Jesus marvels and says, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith” (Luke 7:9). However, while his posture […]

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The story of the wise and foolish builders, found at the conclusion of Jesus’ Sermon on the Plain, is a familiar one to most. Having taught on living the life of the kingdom and what it means to be an authentic disciple, Jesus warns those who would presume to call him ‘Lord’ yet fail to do what […]

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Continuing his teaching on how we are to treat our enemies, Jesus unfolds further what it looks like to truly love others. Those who expect others to not be judgmental, condemning, or unforgiving, yet fail to extend grace and forgiveness themselves are hypocrites. Only those who have come to know the gospel of the kingdom—of the King who […]

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As Jesus continues preaching to the crowds about kingdom living, he now moves into one of the most difficult, yet most distinctly Christian, teachings in his sermon: love for enemies. Jesus here commands his disciples that they must not only love them, but do good to them, pray for them, and even lend to them expecting […]

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What does it mean to be truly blessed? According to the kingdom of this world, the blessed are those who earn the most and have the best. They are the rich, those satisfied with the comforts of this life, and those who are accepted and praised by all. But according to Christ Jesus, the blessed are […]

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In the Old Testament we read of how God graciously called Israel to his be his chosen people. They were to teach all the surrounding nations about their holy and loving God by their covenant faithfulness to his word (Ex. 19:4-6). However in the New Testament, Jesus appears as  the true and better Israel who came to redeem a […]

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The Sabbath was the seventh day of the Jewish week and was set apart by religious observances and cessation from work. The scribes and Pharisees, however, had turned the observance of the Sabbath from a delight into a heavy burden. Jesus had already proven to the scribes and Pharisees that he had divine authority to […]

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Following Jesus’ declaration of coming not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance, the Pharisees and scribes immediately defend their religiosity. Rather than hear, understand, and recognize their sinful condition before a holy God, they continue to boast in their self-righteousness and cling to their faithful law-keeping. But Jesus explains that the old covenant system of approaching […]

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So far in Luke’s gospel, we’ve seen that Jesus came “to proclaim good news to the poor” (Luke 4:18; 4:43). The calling of Levi, and Jesus’ association with tax collectors and sinners, here in this passage is a powerful demonstration of this mission of redemption, but the Pharisees and scribes are offended. Yet this is more […]

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In this passage, we not only see Jesus compassionately healing a leper and a paralytic, but claiming and proving himself to be the forgiver of sins. Though lepers were alienated from the life of the community, as a result of their uncleanness, Jesus willingly stretches out his hand to touch him. Why? To beautifully illustrate that God’s grace is greater than […]

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