Luke presents Jesus as the Ideal Man -- Chapter 08
Jesus preached the parable of the sower to a large crowd that had gathered out of every city.
LUKE 8:5 A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.
LUKE 8:11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
The Bible is a seed that is planted in the hearts of people and then grows.
The Devil takes away any interest people have in the Bible. Science does that with the Big Bang theory and evolution. They claim the Bible is just a story for primitive people, and not the truth. People, wanting to be regarded as clever, believe all this error and lose out with God. So much for a brief moment of feeling that one is clever. Followed by a lost eternity of knowing that you were fooled.
LUKE 8:6 And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture.
A plant in shallow soil has no roots. People with no depth of Bible knowledge cannot withstand temptation and fall away. Basic problem: Too lazy or preoccupied to study the Bible.
LUKE 8:7 And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it.
People are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.
Basic problem: Focus on self and short term gains of this life. No long term vision.
LUKE 8:8 And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
People with an honest and good heart, having heard the Word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.
"He that hath ears to hear, let him hear."
This is the advice given to every church age throughout the 2 000 years of Gentile church history. Whatever the different circumstances of history were, listening to the Bible is the key to eternal life.
REVELATION 2:7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches;
LUKE 8:9 And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be?
Jesus preached this parable to many people but only the disciples asked what it meant.
LUKE 8:10 And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.
The Bible is written in a certain way so that only those who are very curious and seek hard for an answer will understand it. Those who feel that there are mistakes in the Bible, or else that parts of the Bible are not important, will never penetrate behind the veil of mystery that hides the truth from the casual on-looker.
LUKE 8:16 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light.
The Bible is a light and all the light is good and valuable. Do not try to hide any of the Bible light. Do not be happy with your ignorance of Bible passages. Never say there are mistakes in the Bible. There are no unimportant parts. If a Bible verse contradicts what you believe, then you are wrong. If you cannot explain a Bible verse, do not cover up your ignorance. Ask around. Remember, truth is not just confined to your church group. Others can also teach you.
LUKE 8:18 Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have.
Believe, and study and discuss the Bible, and God will reveal more of it to you. Chop out bits as "wrong" or "unimportant" and soon you will lose the bit of understanding that you had.
LUKE 8:21 And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.
Hearing and doing what is in the Bible is the only way of drawing us into a close relationship with Jesus.
Now comes a typical human scenario. While sailing peacefully through life, the disciples ignore Jesus as they do not need Him, so He falls asleep. But as soon as things get rough, then they suddenly seek Him.
LUKE 8:22 Now it came to pass on a certain day, that he went into a ship with his disciples: and he said unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake. And they launched forth.
:23 But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy.
:24 And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm.
:25 And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him.
Lesson: We pray for good times, but they don't do us much good as we drift away from Jesus when all is going well for us. We do our best to avoid bad times, yet when things go wrong we serve Him best.
In success we sow the seeds of failure by not needing Jesus. In failure we sow the seeds of success by realizing our dependence on Him.
In the country of the Gadarenes was a naked man, possessed by many demons. He dwelt in the tombs, the places of the dead. The demons asked to be able to go into some nearby pigs. Satan was in the serpent in Eden. Now his demons wanted to live in pigs. Devils are happy to live in animals, but God only wants to live in human hearts.
LUKE 8:32 And there was there an herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they besought him that he would suffer them to enter into them. And he suffered them.
:33 Then went the devils out of the man, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the lake, and were choked.
The pigs were demon possessed and then preferred to drown themselves.
LUKE 8:34 When they that fed them saw what was done, they fled, and went and told it in the city and in the country.
God performed a miracle. But it cost them money as they lost their pigs. Because they lost money they fled. People just cannot bear to lose money, even when God is controlling events. They would rather flee from the presence of Jesus. Such is our human love for money. For most, our love of money is greater than our love for God.
LUKE 8:35 Then they went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid.
The demons had stripped him naked. Free from demonology his first instinct was to put on clothes again. So who strips the clothing off modern day women? It also implies that naked people are not in their right mind.
LUKE 8:37 Then the whole multitude of the country of the Gadarenes round about besought him to depart from them; for they were taken with great fear: and he went up into the ship, and returned back again.
Because they lost money when their pigs drowned, the Jews wanted nothing to do with Jesus. They wanted a religion that had no sacrifice.
LUKE 8:38 Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying,
:39 Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee. And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him.
Normally Jesus told people to keep quiet about His miracles. That helped to prevent great crowds from getting in His way as He tried to move around. Jesus did not need anyone else to announce His abilities. His own Presence was His best advertisement. His miracles had always been free, which attracted too many people who wanted to use Him for the selfish benefits of a miracle, but who had no real interest in the truth.
The prosperity Gospel encourages people to selfishly use God to boost their wealth, but they are not really interested in Bible truths.
But because the whole multitude told Him to go away, he left this healed man as His evangelist to spread the news around about what the people were missing by chasing Him away.
In addition, this miracle had cost the people money. So following Jesus was not always just for free. It could involve sacrifice. So only those who were prepared to pay a price for the Gospel, rather than just gain from it, would welcome Him back. These were a better quality of follower.
LUKE 8:40 And it came to pass, that, when Jesus was returned, the people gladly received him: for they were all waiting for him.
Luke as a doctor mentions a hopeless medical case, where a woman had bankrupted herself trying in vain to get help from doctors.
LUKE 8:43 And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any,
:44 Came behind him, and touched the border of his garment: and immediately her issue of blood stanched.
Just touching His garment even when He did not see her was enough to heal her.
This woman symbolizes the church that draws spiritual power by being in contact with Jesus Christ.
If we get behind Jesus and follow Him, He will help us like he helped this woman.
Jairus was a ruler of the synagogue and he begged Jesus to come and heal his daughter.
Then they got news that she had died.
LUKE 8:50 But when Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying, Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole.
:51 And when he came into the house, he suffered no man to go in, save Peter, and James, and John, and the father and the mother of the maiden.
:52 And all wept, and bewailed her: but he said, Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth.
:53 And they laughed him to scorn, knowing that she was dead.
Their weeping was just a hypocritical show as any genuine mourner would not mock anyone.
LUKE 8:54 And he put them all out, and took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise.
:55 And her spirit came again, and she arose straightway: and he commanded to give her meat.
:56 And her parents were astonished: but he charged them that they should tell no man what was done.
This resurrection from the dead was amazing, yet Jesus never sought to advertise His miracles. Humans are keen to seek fame and advertise their successes.
This resurrection of a young girl was not really going to have significance for Israel. It symbolized the resurrection of the young Gentile church from the dead doctrines of paganism during the first church age. That church would be fed strong meat which represents the true doctrines of the New Testament.
But the Jews did not believe that God would turn to the Gentiles.
Thus Jesus did not want this news spread amongst the Jews as they would not appreciate its significance, especially as the Jews would reject Jesus.