Chapter # 6 Paragraph # 2 Study # 2
Thesis: Jesus' antagonism toward the destroyers of the people is very great.
Introduction: The major thesis of Luke 5:17-6:11 is that the reasons for the rejection of Jesus as the Kinsman-Redeemer were completely illegitimate. Luke wrote to Theophilus to give him a more solid basis for his development into a lover of God than he had. However, Luke knew that no one becomes a lover of God without believing the facts. In this world there are only two issues that are important. The first is whether, or not, a person has any inclination whatsoever to put God first in all of the decisions of his life. The second is whether, or not, a person has any inclination to trust the God he claims to have put first in all of the decisions of his life. Luke knew that Theophilus had an inclination to develop into a lover of God. Luke also knew that Theophilus would never get there unless he had a sufficient foundation for faith so that he could get through each day's complexities without succumbing to the temptation to take control of his own life. So, Luke wrote to tell Theophilus about how Jesus deliberately healed a man's withered right hand on the Sabbath so that Theophilus could better understand his Kinsman-Redeemer, whom he had determined to love.
This morning we are going to take a look at something Luke told Theophilus about his Kinsman-Redeemer that Theophilus needed to know. That "something" has to do with Jesus' deliberate humiliation of the proud.
September 9, 2007
- I. The Result of Jesus' Action.
- A. The Pharisees and scribes "were filled with foolishness".
- 1. Luke's word, translated "madness" (AV), or "rage" (NASB), is rare in the New Testament (used only twice; once by Luke and once by Paul).
- a. This means that Luke did not want to use a well-known word to describe what happened to these highly educated people of the Bible.
- b. This also means that if we want to understand what Luke was trying to get Theophilus to see, we are going to have to give some thought to Luke's choice of words.
- 2. The word Luke chose is found a few times in the Septuagint.
- a. Of those times, a couple are highly instructive.
- 1) Proverbs 14:8 in its context declares that "the folly of fools [exists] in deceit" and the context shows that the point is that a person who is involved with "folly" will not be able to extricate himself from the deceitfulness that has trapped his mind.
- 2) Proverbs 22:15 says that "foolishness" is bound up in the heart of a youth and that the only solution is "the rod of correction".
- 3) The point is that the word means a kind of silliness that absolutely dominates its victims by means of deceit and the only way of escape is to have it beaten out.
- b. The significance of Luke's choice of this term is seen when its "victims" are identified.
- 1) The scribes and the Pharisees were notable for two major problems.
- a) They were extremely committed to "being important".
- b) They were extremely committed to "using God and His words" as their tools for getting to be important.
- 2) These two major problems were both extremely "deceitful" and had resulted in two major consequences.
- a) One major consequence was an elaborately tangled concept of how one gets to be accepted by God that had one outstanding characteristic: the "best" at living in the tangle got the greatest rewards of human approval [Note the description of Gamaliel in Acts 5:34 and the significance of that description in Acts 22:3 -- he was the main outside cause of Saul's extreme wickedness].
- b) The second major consequence was the automatic reaction of intense rage by the ones who were "best" at the game when they were contradicted.
- B. The scribes and Pharisees set out to destroy Jesus.
- II. The Nature of Jesus' Action.
- A. Remember Proverbs 22:15 -- it takes a "rod" to "correct" this particular problem.
- B. Remember Paul's own account of the "rod" taken to him (Acts 22:11) and the reason that it's lingering results were not removed (2 Corinthians 12:6-9).
- C. Consider Jesus' actions.
- 1. He acted because He "knew" their thoughts.
- 2. His actions were deliberately "harsh".
- a. He exposed their hypocrisy.
- 1) He knew that they knew that their own "interruptions" (a play on the word "inter- pretations") of the words of God included the permissions to "do good" (the priests "worked" on the Sabbaths in order to fulfill the worship requirements of the Law) and to "do harm" (the soldiers of Israel were allowed to wage war on the Sabbaths).
- 2) He knew that the people in the synagogue knew of these "allowances" also.
- 3) He impaled the scribes and Pharisees upon their own law in the eyes of everyone.
- b. He exposed their powerlessness.
- 1) In 1 Corinthians 4:19 Paul revealed the humiliation of the powerless by the powerful.
- 2) The "problem" was towering arrogance and the solution was a massive humiliation.
- c. He deliberately did nothing for which He could be accused.
- 1) He did no work other than commanding a man to stretch forth his hand.
- 2) The healing was attributed to Him but in a way that left Him unaccusable.
- III. The Point.
- A. When a person willfully determines to set his own course in life, he sets himself against God.
- B. When a person sets himself against God, he opens himself wide open to being publicly humiliated -- if God cares enough for him to do it.
- C. All are going to stand in a public judgment and give an answer for the deeds they have done.