If we give a description of someone, we can do so from different angels. For example, we can highlight someone as the father of a family. In addition, a description of the same person is also possible as a colleague or as a neighbor. In this way we see how four evangelists – under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit – report the life of the Lord Jesus during His stay on earth. In the four biographies we have in the Bible, Matthew tells in his Gospel about the Lord Jesus as King, Mark presents Him as Servant, Luke describes Him as true Man and finally John writes about Him as the eternal Son of God.
The purpose of this Gospel is to look at the Lord Jesus as Man. Hence the call: “Behold, the Man” (Jn 19:5) is chosen as the subtitle for this book. If we read this Gospel with the desire to see Him as Man, we will get to know Him as Someone in Whom God has come close to us men. He became equal to men, yet without sin (Heb 4:15).
Ger de Koning
Middelburg, October 2009, new version 2020, translated 2020
Purpose of the Gospel according to Luke
Luke presents the Lord Jesus as the Son of Man, the Man of God for all men. In Him God reveals Himself in redeeming grace to lost men. He addresses himself in this Gospel to all mankind. Here, the dispensation of the law is not replaced by another dispensation (the kingdom) as in the Gospel according to Matthew, but here the law is substituted by saving heavenly grace. Grace is not just the solution to the problem of sin. Grace goes much further and that is what this Gospel presents. This Gospel is not so much about what God wanted to deliver us from, but what He wanted to make of us.
In this Gospel, men are presented as men with whom God is pleased (Lk 2:14). God has predestined them to that purpose. Therefore, a heading for this Gospel could be “taken into favor in the Beloved” (Eph 1:6, Darby Translation). Favor or grace contains everything that God has prepared for us in His counsels. It is said of believers that they are made pleasant in the Beloved, for it is He, the beloved Son, in Whom God reveals Himself. In Him God comes in grace as Man to us. He is the Man from heaven, He is true Man, yet without sin.
The Writer Luke
God used Luke to record this Gospel. Luke is a co-worker of the apostle Paul and a physician by profession (Col 4:14; 2Tim 4:11; Phlm 1:24). He is most probably a Gentile of origin and he writes to a Gentile. It shows that the grace of God is also for the Gentiles.
As Paul’s companion he wrote about things on which Paul expands in his letters. There is a close connection between these two servants, who have spent a lot of time together. Luke shows us what Paul further elaborates on: the sonship of the believer. Luke speaks of sons of the Most High (Lk 6:35), a son of peace (Lk 10:6, literal translation), sons of light (Lk 16:8), sons of God (Lk 20:36), sons of the resurrection (Lk 20:36). Sonship is the highest position of the believer before God, for that is what the believer is before God Himself as a joy to His heart (Eph 1:5).