Luke 5

Luke 5:1 - "[T]he crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God". Wait, 'the word of God'? Jesus certainly didn't have a Bible, could he have had a scroll of scripture? We think 'Bible' when we hear the phrase 'word of God', here it couldn't have meant that, or at least it was highly unlikely.

'The word of God' is not what we've made it to be. We equate it with the book we call 'The Bible', it is not. It is simply the words of God. Jesus was teaching them what God says and wants, therefore giving them God's words. The Bible contains the words of God, but it isn't the words of God. God has more to say to us than the Bible can hold.

Luke 5:5 - Jesus had barely begun his ministry and hadn't yet called his first disciples, yet Peter already calls him master. Even more, he treats him as master, obeying his request when his professional judgement tells him it's foolish (but until he tells Jesus he thinks his plan is crazy).

Luke 5:13 - "And immediately the leprosy left him." We can imagine what that might have looked like, but what do you think it felt like? In my job, I design parts and products with the benefit of a computer. I can put the entire assembly of parts together and show you, very realistically, what it will look like. But when a client needs to know how strong a spring should be, or how soft a grip will feel in the hand, there's no way a computer can show you that (yet). The same is true here, I can imagine the leprosy just disappearing or fading away, but what did it feel like to be healed by Jesus?

Luke 5:17 - Can you imagine being one of the teachers? He draws them from all around. On one hand, you might be excited to see who this is and what he's about. Could he be from God? On the other hand, no one comes and gathers around you like this. The power of the Lord isn't present with you to d the things he does, and you are supposed to be the spiritual leader of Israel. If he's someone from God, then I'll look the fool for not recognizing it sooner and I'll have to change my thinking and my teaching. It would be very easy to be skeptical and offended.

It makes me think that I need to be careful myself when someone brings something unexpected or different. Does he have an agenda or is it possibly from God? Paul tells us to test the spirits for sure, but to test them you need to be open that they are really from God. It's too easy to reject anything that doesn't fit within out preconceived notions, perhaps things we've believed for years.

Luke 5:19 - What kind of boldness does it take to rip apart the roof of another man's house?

Luke 5:20-25 - I've always Eben puzzled here by the connection Jesus makes between forgiveness of the man's sins and healing is body. Come to think of it, maybe there is no connection after all. He doesn't get up and walk until after Jesus tells him to, not when Jesus forgives his sins. I guess the answer is in v24, after the forgiveness and before the healing, Jesus says "that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins". The point Jesus wanted them to get was that he had the authority to forgive sins. The feelings were to establish that fact.

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