"I want to read a book of the Bible all the way through. No time limit. I just want to read and learn. I want to read a book from the Gospels that I haven't really read much from and I don't know too much about. Hmmm....what about Luke? Wasn't he a doctor? Doesn't that mean he gives a doctorly point of view? I wonder what that could be like? Hm.... Okay, I'm going to read Luke."
After opening up my Bible, I soon found out that.....
the book of Luke in the Bible is simply amazing!
I started reading the first chapter last night and it just took my breath away!
I had to read it through three times because there were so many interesting things.
Here are just a few notes:
-The first few verses talk about how there are many versions of what Luke writes about. His is not a firsthand account but a careful investigation of previously shared narratives.
-vs. 5 is Zechariah the same man from the book of Zechariah? I'm not 100% sure, but after reading vs 1 of Zechariah and then vs. 5 of Luke, I don't think they're the same.
-vs. 12 Zechariah was fearful when an angel appeared to him in the temple.
Well I would be too! But what does it actually mean? Did this happen often? Does the note from vs. 6 that Z and his wife were both upright in God's eyes therefore allow him an encounter with an angel?
-vs. 14 John is not to drink any fermented drink. Hmmm.....interesting. Why?
Also, "he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth." Wow! And what does that mean entirely? Oh yeah, people didn't receive the Holy Spirit until after Jesus died and he sent his spirit into the bodies of believers (and when he blessed the disciples with it). I can't even imagine not having the Holy Spirit within me. Or even imagine the experience of receiving it when Jesus sent it out. (Is that the right verb?)
-vs. 18 Z asks the angel
He actually thinks to talk to the angel. Ask him a question. wow!
He does bring up good points though (humanly speaking). Come on Z! You're talking to an angel! Like one of God's messengers and spiritual beings!
-vs. 19 Gabriel. Oh yeah. Same dude. Heard of him before.
Oh, oops. Z, you made a huge mistake. Apparently, even if you don't believe an angel, it is incomplete faith in God. Yeah. Big oops. No more talking for nine months. Mhmm. Hope I don't ever blow something like that.
-vs. 22 I wonder what kind of signs Z was making.
-vs. 23 Wow. So not only did Z have a conversation, an encounter with an angel, he had to then complete his time as the priest in the temple giving the offerings to the altar, and then he could return home. I wonder if he wanted to get home sooner to get the babymaking happen? :)
-vs. 24 Known for being barren, Elizabeth became pregnant just like Gabriel said she would. But for five months she "remained in seclusion." I wonder why? What's up with that? Wouldn't they want everyone to know their good news and about God's miracle??
-vs. 25 Also, apparently Elizabeth was disgraced by her neighbors and community. Why? Well I guess it's because she was barren. Culturally, things were a lot different from where I'm living right now. Oh yeah. Thanks for that reminder God!
-vs. 26 Gabriel shows up again, this time to Mary. After Gabriel says, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you," Mary is fearful. Darn right! Although, why? Obviously it's an angel. But is it a ghostly, mostly transparent but sometimes fully human-looking being? I wonder......
vs. 34 Good Q.
vs. 36 & 37, E known for being barren, is preggers! "For nothing is impossible with God." Uh yeah! You got that right! I mean, come on! a notoriously barren woman of a certain age suddenly is pregnant. And then a young virgin is having a conversation with an angel?!!! Come on! I think it's only fitting to say verse 37 again and again! NOTHING is impossible with God! There, I said it :) And with a little self-imposed emphasis.
vs. 38, Mary answers congenially and then the angel leaves. She only asked him two questions, and then she's going to be pregnant with the SON of GOD! How big is that?! It seems only fitting, that she would have a song a few verses later!
vs. 39 Mary goes quickly to visit her cousin. What about Joseph? What does he know yet? If he did know already about his soon-to-be-born son, how did he feel, having Mary go visit her cousin indefinitely. I mean, I would definitely not want to miss out on such a pregnancy! Or did Mary or Gabriel even tell him? So many questions!!
vs. 42-45 Elizabeth greets Mary warmly, telling her about her baby filled with the Holy Spirit, kicking when she heard her voice. Mary is treated differently as the mother of God's Son now for the first time. Not necessarily treated, but revered, respected, or held in gratitude.
vs. 46 & 47 Wait...this sounds familiar! I think I know this. Well, duh, I recognize the words as part of 'Mary's song', but it really does sound familiar! Oh yeah, I know an acappella song that sings these two verses.