In our New Testament Reading Challenge we started the book of Luke today which is unique and special for many reasons. Luke was an incredible teacher. Teaching was clearly his spiritual gift, this is why in The Absolute Basics of Christianity we study him extensively in week seven. Individuals with this gift have a strong desire to present truth in a systematic sequence. For example, in the first chapter of his gospel, Luke states that his purpose in writing this book is to lay out an “orderly account” (Luke 1:3). He also notes that others have already written about the life of Jesus; however, he feels compelled to do so as well, presumably because he was not completely satisfied with the other accounts. Teachers like Luke are concerned with facts and accuracy. Look at the following verses in different gospels and you will see that Luke is much more precise with his language.
- Mark 1:30 NET Simon’s mother-in-law was lying down, sick with a fever, so they spoke to Jesus at once about her.
- Luke 4:38 NET After Jesus left the synagogue, he entered Simon’s house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Jesus to help her.
- Mark 3:1 NET Then Jesus entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a withered hand.
- Luke 6:6 NET On another Sabbath, Jesus entered the synagogue and was teaching. Now a man was there whose right hand was withered.
- Mark 1:40 NET Now a leper came to him and fell to his knees, asking for help. “If you are willing, you can make me clean,” he said.
- Luke 5:12 NET While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came to him who was covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he bowed down with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.”
If you read Matthew’s genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1:1-16, you might notice that he only traces the genealogy of Christ back to David while Luke traces it all the way back to Adam and Eve (Luke 3:23-38). There is no doubt that the gospel of Luke gives more details when it comes to names, cities, towns, dates, events, and side points than any of the other gospels. Luke’s account of the early church in the book of Acts is equally precise. Those with the gift of teaching pay close attention to the details and stick to the facts more than those with any other gift. They are more anticlerical and thoughtful than most. They may not have a lot to say but when they say it, everyone listens because it is well thought-out and worth listening to. Pay close attention as we read through Luke’s gospel and you will notice many details that the other gospels omit.