Chapter # 7 Paragraph # 2 Study # 2
August 10, 2008
Lincolnton, N.C.

<456> Thesis: Unless men come to grips with what is really important, there is no deliverance from fear. Introduction: As we have moved through Luke's record of Jesus' words and works, especially from 6:12 to our current text, we have been confronted with two major themes. The first is the central concept of the eternal Kingdom of God; and the second is the centrality of "faith" as the critical factor for man in respect to that central concept. When we were studying the words of Jesus regarding that central concept we discovered that He put it forth in terms of one word in 6:36 -- "compassion". His argument is this: the Father of the Eternal Kingdom and all of its subjects is "compassionate", so His children can ill afford to not be. But, as we saw in those studies, the "compassion" of the Father unfolds along three major lines: loving one's enemies, doing good to those who are hateful, and giving to those whose needs are going unmet. These "expressions" of compassion challenge men at the core of their values and, as Jesus revealed afterward, the challenges will not be successfully met unless a person comes to grips with what it means to believe in the compassionate Father. Thus, the record of the centurion's "unique-in-Israel" faith -- a faith that addresses the "authority" issue with a clear-eyed bottom line. That bottom line is, fundamentally, the conviction that when Jesus says something that "something" is absolutely trustworthy and must be put into play. And then along comes the text before us this morning: the record of the raising of the dead in Nain and the record of the response of the people. To "get" the point of this record, we have to do two things. First, we have to see what Luke has done "linguistically" in his record; and, second, we have to see the major thesis that drives Luke's record. So, this morning we are going to attempt to "get the point".