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Sermon24-22 Lk14 Guide

Luke 14:1,7-15, theme verse Luke 14:13-14

The praise and honor and glory be to our heavenly Father who seeks true worshipers who worship Him with the Spirit and truth.

In the fifth Sunday of Easter season, I pray that His vitality and joy and power of the resurrection may be with you all. From last three week, while meditating on the Gospel of Luke, we saw that Luke proclaimed that the Gospel is good news for all nations, in which the lost humanity could be healed in His salvation, as God’s will and mission so that Jesus was sent to this world to proclaim this good news to recover the relations with God. And especially in today’s text, Luke called that community as the community of fellowship so I hope we could learn few lessons, while meditating on today’s text together.

1)    As we looked at past three weeks, around AD 80-90, when the Gentiles increased a lot in the church, Luke who was a Gentile too from Syria Antioch, wrote this Gospel to a Roman Gentile Theophilus, saying that Gospel is good news for all nations which brought the salvation from the sin and healing of its corruption as the will and mission of God so that Jesus was sent to this world as a Savior and Healer, who was the Son of God and also a perfect Man and the Messiah of God to recover the relationship with God.

2)    And Luke depicted church as a united and happy community which recovered the relationship with God, enjoying table fellowship and banquets in love. So, Luke wrote the table fellowship of Jesus 13 times among total 19 table fellowship of four Gospel books. That’s why His enemies called Jesus a glutton or a wine drinker and also they criticized Him for eating with tax collectors and sinners. However, in the first century of the New Testament era, “Food means life, so sharing food means sharing.”

3)    So, even in today’s text, when Jesus was invited to a meal at Pharisee’s house, he taught the dining etiquette as follows; I mean, to the host who invites people, He taught that a) they had to invite others selflessly, (14:12-14) so that they could be rewarded in the heaven and b) after they invited others, they had to show appropriate hospitality such as washing their feet, etc., as being practiced in the Judean society (7:44-46), and c) even the high class people had to serve quests whom he invited (22:26-27). And also to the quests, He taught that a) they had to be careful not to ignore legitimate invitation (14:15-24), and b) they had to try to sit in the lower place in the house. (14:7-11) In summary, Jesus taught these table fellowship should be characterized with voluntary sharing and service and humility. Therefore these Jesus’ teaching resulted in the Lord’s Supper in the early church as seen in Acts 2:46 since Jesus installed the Holy Supper and also resulted in the koinonia community, I mean, the community of fellowship which shared all things in common as Acts 2:44-46 says.

4)    Anyhow, in the Gospel of Luke, not only the centripetal force of the Gospel in the table fellowship but also the centrifugal force of Gospel in the outward mission was emphasized, so that Luke emphasized that table fellowship of Lukan community did not make people exclusive or remain only inside the church, rather their fellowship resulted into outward mission, as in the Gospel of Luke and Acts, the mission trip themes appear prominently, In other words, in the Gospel of Luke, Jesus’ journey from Galilee to Jerusalem accounts in Luke 9:51-19:27 are composed of about 40% of the total account and in the Acts, Paul’s missionary journey account of about 57% in Acts 13-28. As such, the mission trip of Jesus in the Gospel of Luke and Paul’s mission trip in the Acts highlight the importance of mission in the two books. That’s why many theologians say that the most important theme of the Gospel of Luke and the Acts is the mission or evangelism. In this way, Luke is saying that, on the one hand, the centripetal force of the table fellowship not only united believers in love, but also enabled the church to become a mission community that spreads out good news to the world.

5)    By the way, the reason why the Lord established the Lukan community as a fellowship community in table fellowship internally and a mission community externally, I mean, the ultimate purpose of fellowship and mission was the worshipping God, in other words, glorifying God as Luke especially emphasized in his Gospel. What I mean is, the Gospel of Luke begins with the praise of Mary and Zacharias in Chapter 1 and the praise of angels in chapter 2, being followed by the praise of Jesus in chapter 10 and ends with the praise of the disciples in chapter 19 and 24.

6)    And in addition to these, in the gospel of Luke, eight incidents to glorify God were recorded as special Lukan motifs; I mean,

a)     in 2:20, the shepherds who saw the baby Jesus glorified God.

b)    And in 5:25, there was written an incident that a sick man who was healed of paralysis glorified God

c)     and in 5:26, those who witnessed the paralyzed man being healed glorified God.

d)    And also 7:16 states that those who witnessed the widow’s son raised from the dead glorified God.

e)     And 13:13 says that the woman who had been demon-possessed for eighteen years glorified God after Jesus casted out demons and healed her

f)     And in 17:15, when Jesus healed ten lepers, one of them, Samaritan, returned and glorified God.

g)    And in 18:43, the blind man was healed and glorified God.

h)    And 23:47 records the incident in which the centurion who witnessed the Lord’s death in the cross, glorified God.

As such to glorify God was an important Lukan motif too.

7)    Through today’s Bible verses, we would like to learn few things. Firstly, we would like to see the hidden messages that Jesus tried also to expose false attitudes of five people in today’s text, beyond the dining etiquette, I mean, a) for the Pharisees, as 14:1-6 says, Jesus exposed hidden piety of the Pharisees behind their superficial hospitality, and b) for the invited quests, He wanted to correct their wrong posture of trying to sit in high seats to pursue false popularity, as in 14:7-11, and c) then for the hosts, as stated in 14:12-14, He wanted to correct their false hospitality in which they sought to receive repayment and respect, and d) for the Jews, as in 14:15-24, Jesus told them not to reject God’s invitation due to their false confidence in salvation, and ed) finally for the multitudes, as in 14:25-35, He taught people not to respond to an invitation with wrong expectations. Secondly, although the Gospel of Luke had mission as its central theme, based on internal fellowship, yet as Luke said that the glory of God was the ultimate end of all their activities, we have to check where we live in the gospel. I mean, are we really enjoying the joy of fellowship within the church and living a life of mission in the world? And are we glorifying God through all our lives? Therefore, as the five principles of reformation of our Protestant church were Sola Fide (faith alone), Sola Gratia (grace alone), Sola Scriptura (only Bible), Sola Christo (Christ alone), and finally, sola soli Deo (only the glory of God), I pray that all of us here will be able to live a life that glorifies God through faith alone, by relying solely on grace, based solely on the Bible, and centered solely on Christ.

Key Questions as Small Group Activity

Q1 The Lukan kingdom of God is expressed as the community of fellowship. Since our Triune God is the God of community of love, we human beings were created for the fellowship and also saved for the community with God and our neighbors. So, after reviewing our life to check whether we enjoy that fellowship with God and our neighbors, I hope you could share your thoughts with your team members together.

Q2 And also, as Luke emphasized the glory of God through inward fellowship and outward missional life, I hope we could check whether we live in that purpose and you could share your thoughts and experience with your team members.

Love you. Thank you. God bless you.

Prayer Note

Dear ( God’s attribute which you found Today ) God!

Thanks for ( something you received through the sermon or  even during the week )

Praise, gratitude and glory be to You, Lord!

Today, I realized my sin (pains) that ( the sin God reminded through the sermon ),

please forgive (or heal) me and help me not to repeat ( the sins you recognized   ).

I learned that ( something you learned through the sermon                                    )

Please help me to live in that (  learned way of life                                                )

I pray in ( Jesus’ attribute you find ) Jesus’ name. Amen.


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