“So many others have tried their hand at putting together a story of the wonderful harvest of Scripture and history that took place among us, using reports handed down by the original eyewitnesses who served this Word with their very lives. Since I have investigated all the reports in close detail, starting from the story’s beginning, I decided to write it all out for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can know beyond the shadow of a doubt the reliability of what you were taught.” Luke 1:1-4, The MSG
I can’t think of a better way to start off today’s post than the words above. How awesome is it that Luke, who wrote this book, wrote it with the intention of ensuring his readers knew “beyond the shadow of a doubt the reliability of what (they) were taught?” I think it’s with good reason that Luke starts off his book this way, because the next heading in Luke 1 in The Message version reads, “A Childless Couple Conceives,” and the following one reads “A Virgin Conceives.” Luke may not have been the one including headings in his letter, but the content of his letter is the same today as it was so many years ago… and the contents of that letter are enough to make some people stop and question their reliability.
As someone who’s grown up in the church, I feel as though I’ve heard most of the Bible over and over again. But Luke’s focus on reminding believers that the things we have heard about over and over again really ARE true challenged me. Let it never become old to us that these incredible things did happen so long ago… a very old couple who hadn’t been able to have children had a baby, and a virgin conceived. These things happened, friends, and because they did we have hope for our lives today.
You see, the very fact that the miracles in the Bible are true means that the other things in the Bible are true- particularly, the fact that Jesus was here and He was who He said He was. My hope is that as we read Luke over the next few weeks and reencounter portions of the Gospel which are all too familiar to us, we will never lose sight of the fact that these things are real and that they happened. They have direct implications on our life today. Luke 1 may be about Mary becoming pregnant with Jesus, but later on we’ll read about Jesus’ sacrifice for us, and it’s important to read Luke 1 with this truth in mind.
One of my favorite songs is Because He Lives by Matt Maher, and part of the song says this:
Because He lives, I can face tomorrow
Because He lives, all fear is gone
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living, just because He lives
Luke is going to take us through the life of Jesus, and as it does, I hope we can become recentered on the fact that these miraculous stories aren’t just stories, but true life events that happened and that mean we have hope for everything we face today. Be encouraged that our God is the very same God who was in the business of miracles 2,000 years ago, and that He is just as capable of being faithful today as He was back then.