A STUDY OF THE BOOK OF LUKE

Jesus is Coming No Doubt About it

Luke 17 SCC 6/26/16

 

While He was on the way to Jerusalem, He was passing between Samaria and Galilee v 11.

 

DISCIPLES MUST ASSUME FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR SPIRITUAL WALK

This is done in at least four ways:

Donít participate in leading a believer astray 1-2

First, even though it is inevitable that new believers (one of these little ones) will sin (stumble) be sure you are not the cause of it. Itís possible that temptation to defect spiritually can even come from within Godís household. The warning is tat whoever leads one into sin is subject to Godís wrath v 2. A harsh death would be better for this one than what he or she will receive from God. The seriousness of teaching other disciples and guiding them properly is implied in this warning.

Rebuke a sinning believer; quick to forgive when he repents 3-4

If your brother (a believer who is part of your circle of influence, your network) sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him no matter how many times he does it and even if itís against you. So you have a responsibility to rebuke a sinner in your network and a responsibility to forgive one who repents. You become the sinning brother, if you donít rebuke him and forgive him. The emphasis here is on the one who does some evil against you, and asks for forgiveness. Be sure you always forgive such a one because thatís what you want God to do for you forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.

Pursue the development of faith 5-6

The apostles ask, Increase our faith. A little bit of genuine faith can accomplish a great deal. Mustard seed faith can uproot and replant a mulberry tree. But itís not just having faith in God to do what you ask, itís placing your faith in what God is doing. You can uproot a mulberry tree and plant it in the sea. Nor can you move a mountain. Moses would not be able to either. But he could part the Red Sea. Why? Because thatís what God was doing. Moses would not be able to part the Nile River. But he could bring about frogs covering the land of Egypt. Why? Because thatís what God was doing. If you had faith like a mustard seed, you could do anything that God is doing.

NB: Increasing faith is the result of faith that leans in the direction of Gods priorities. Things like a righteous life, making disciples, preparing believers for heaven, increasing the eternal net worth of Christ followers, going beyond Jesusí commands, spiritual maturity, are consistent with what God is doing. Applying faith into these priorities allows oneís faith to bear fruit that moves mulberry trees and mountains. Demonstrable and powerful outcomes which are the direct result of faith applied to and leaning in the direction of what it is God is doing. Our struggle comes from applying faith to what it is we are doing and assuming that is what God is doing or misunderstanding what he is doing. God has not promised to heal us today yet many believe so and are disappointed otherwise. Faith leaning toward healing is not faith applied to what Go dis doing today. Using the excuse that one just does not have enough faith then is disingenuous and misinformed.

Determine to go beyond what is just expected 7-10

First, we are seen as Godís slaves not His employeeís v 7. We are not working for Him, doing a ministry for Him, after which our time is our own. The slave must serve his master before taking care of himself v 8. He is not thanked for doing his duty v 9. Second, serving God includes keeping His commands, but it is not defined by those commands. It is defined by keeping all His desires. If we define our relationship with God as keeping His commands, we are unworthy slaves [that is we are unworthy of heavenly rewards, because] we have done only that which we ought to have done. The point is that the slave is considered unworthy because he did what he was supposed to do and no more.

PT: We will not increase our faith by only doing the things God commands us to do. Jesusí response to the disciplesí request to increase their faith was to do more than keep the commandments. If we just do what we are commanded, we should consider ourselves unworthy slaves. We must please the heart of God not just obey the commandments of God. That is done by going beyond a commands intent by applying the heart behind it. David was a find after Godís own heart. He went beyond the commands of God and discerned the heart behind it without violating those commands. He simply pleased God (2 Cor 5:9-10).

ANYONE WHO APPROACHES GOD FOR MERCY WILL RECEIVE IT

Verse 11-14: Jesus responded to the lepers request for mercy (unmerited favor). So come to God as one who needs mercy, not one who deserves something. Had a friend in college who always prayed for Godís grace and mercy to be shown to him. This is a godly desire and one we should pursue in our spiritual walk. We want Godís grace

Verse 15-19: Jesus commended the Samaritan foreigner who gave glory to God. Apparently faith that gives glory to God is better than faith that just obeys God and anybody can benefit. Verse 19 your faith has made you well was true of all of the 10 lepers. But Jesus pointed out the faith of the one who also returned and glorified God. So take time to Give glory to God.

PT: We should encourage people who go beyond what they have been told to do and take time to give glory to God. In this passage Jesus commanded them to go and show themselves to the priests, yet He commends the one who returned to give glory to God. In other words, one comes to the conclusion that what God has said or done is true. Gradually, Jesus healing ministry convinced the apostles that what Jesus was saying was true and that motivated them to believe what Jesus said. In the case of the leper, he gave glory to God.

JESUS KINGDOM WILL APPEAR QUICKLY WHEN HE RETURNS

Here we have a discourse similar to ďThe Olivet DiscourseĒ in Matthew 24-25 but this discourse was given months earlier as they were entering the Samaritan hill country moving toward Jerusalem.

Verse 20-21: Jesus told the Pharisees the kingdom of God is in your midst, referring to Himself v 20. They refused to see what Jesus had clearly demonstrated alreadyóthat He is inaugurating Godís kingdom. But there is also more to be expected v 21. The point is the Kingdom of God is not coming gradually. We will not see it gradually take over the world. Just the opposite. The Antichristís kingdom will gradually take over the world and the coming of Christ will destroy it and set up the Kingdom of God suddenly. The second coming will be sudden, unexpected, and public, not gradual, predictable, or private.

Verse 22-25: We long to see Jesus and there are many cults and crazy people who will say Look there! Look here! But we are to understand that the second coming will be a globally verifiable event, not a personal private or cultic event. He said not to believe anyone with extra-biblical claims about His second coming because just like the lightning, when it flashes out of one part of the sky, shines to the other part of the sky, so will the Son of Man be in His day v 24. The Second Coming will be, like all of Godís miracles, an objectively verifiable event. Beforehand, He told the disciples He must suffer many things and be rejected referring to His death on the cross. by this generation v 25.

Verse 26-30: He said that on earth it will be like the days of Noah and Lot when people increased their immorality and were unaware of what was coming v 26-29. This does not only mean that the coming of Christ will be sudden but it will also be at a time of extreme evil on the earth, as in the days of Noah before that flood (Gen 6:5-6) and the time of the immorality of the Sodom at the time of Lot (Gen 18:20).The only time in history the world has ever been more immoral than it is today is in the days of Noah just before the flood v 30.

Verse 31-37: He gives two (two people in bed, and two women grinding) and a third (the two men in the field verse 36) examples where one will be taken and the other will be left. In the Matthew ďOlivet DiscourseĒ is seems that the one taken is the unbeliever, the one left is left to go into the Millennial Kingdom, but here it is not clear which is the believer. Whether the believer is the one taken or left this describes the separation at the Second Coming where one goes into the Kingdom the other to judgment. The statement Whoever seeks to keep his life will lose it v 34, seems to refer to those who seek to keep their life by joining into the antichrists tribulation economy. The one who loses his life is martyred during the tribulation and he will preserve it because he will be in the Millennial Kingdom with Christ.

This is not the Rapture of 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18:

1. The second coming action is down, from heaven to earth, the rapture action is up from earth.

2. In the second coming Jesus comes in a cloud, in the rapture we go to a cloud.

3. The second coming is about unbelievers; the rapture is about the church.

4. The Second Coming is about the wrath of God; the rapture is about the grace of God.

5. The Second Coming is a time of terror; the rapture is a time of comfort.

6. The Second Coming is followed by the Millennial Kingdom for Israel on earth; the rapture is not.

7. The Second Coming is about judgment for unbelievers; the rapture is about rewards for believers.

8. The Second Coming is not an imminent event but many signs; the rapture is a sudden imminent event.

Verse 37: The question is appropriate. When Jesus returns he will return somewhere. The image of vultures shows that judgment occurs where death reigns. For those unprepared that day will be one of judgment not bliss. All will see the judgments horrific finality. It will too late for them. While this return is longed for v 22, it will permanently condemn many.

 

SO WHAT?

1. Jesus is quite insistent that we not cause new believers to sin. So what would those stumbling blocks be today? Keeping silent about cohabitation, lying, ďcasual blasphemyĒ, cheating, overlooking disastrous theology like universalism. If we are going to be Christís disciples, then we can not cause them to stumble. Some of these stumbling blocks are timeless and global but some are local and unique to each area. So it is important to know the stumbling block in your area and help believers discern them.

2. The signs we are not to follow are those made up by man, which are not in the word of God, that predict a coming of Christ. The second coming of Christ will be sudden, unexpected, and public, not gradual, predictable, or private.

3. Christlike leadership spells out the details of the future given in the Bible. Christlike leaders should spell out details of future events as Jesus did but by using revelation already given in the Bible.