Luke Chapter 9

Posted by Dion Todd June 8th, 2015 6,427 Views 0 Comments

Bible Study on Luke 

Luke Chapter 9

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Luke 9 Outline:
9:1-6       Jesus sends out the twelve.
9:7-9       Herod the tetrarch.
9:10-17   The feeding of the five thousand.
9:18-20   Peter’s confession.
9:21-22   A prophecy of the passion.
9:23-27   Taking up the cross.
9:28-36   The transfiguration.
9:37-43   The demon possessed boy.
9:44-45   Another prophecy of the passion.
9:46-48   The disciples pride is revealed.
9:49-50   A strange exorcist.
9:51-56   Jesus is rejected by a samaritan village.
9:57-62   Some people want to follow Jesus, but have excuses.

Fun Facts:
— The disciples were not always together, because Jesus called the twelve together in 9:1. Some of them had homes and families and spent part of their time there. Peter was married; Jesus healed his mother-in-law (Matt 8:14).

— The word “Tetrarch” means a ruler over a a fourth part of a region, but it came to be used over any petty rulers.

— Andrew, Peter’s brother found the boy with the five barley loaves and two fish (John 6:8).

Study Notes:
— Jesus called the twelve together and sent them out “two by two (as Mark tells us)” and told to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal. This is what Jesus was doing and an extension of His own ministry. He was concerned with people’s bodies as well as their souls. They were to travel light and the need was urgent. God would supply their needs, and He did (Luke 22:35). They were to stay at one house, there would be someone interested enough to take them in. The limitation of staying at one house would also limit how long they would stay in a city. They went through the villages on a country tour, preaching and healing “everywhere.”

Jesus told them that if they were not accepted, to shake off the dust from their feet. There was an idea among strict Jews that the dust of gentile lands carried defilement and they would shake it off after traveling abroad. The disciples using the same act against those that rejected the kingdom, as a testimony against them, declared that they were no better than the gentiles, they were not the people of God that they thought they were. Paul and Barnabas did this in Acts 13:51. The equipment stipulations were only for this trip and not to be regarded as a universal example because Jesus later told them to take a purse, bag and a sword (Luke 22:36). When the twelve returned, Jesus took them to a deserted place to rest but the crowds followed Him, and Jesus welcomed them anyway (9:11), preached the kingdom and cured those that needed healing.

— Herod the tetrarch refers to Herod Antipas, the son of Herod the Great. The word “Tetrarch” means a ruler over a a fourth part of a region, but it came to be used over any petty rulers. He became tetrarch of Galilee and Perea about 4 BC and held his office until AD 39. So he was the ruler in most of the areas where Jesus spent time, for most of the life of Jesus. Herod’s brother Phillip ruled as tetrarch to the north-east of the Sea of Galilee. Herod married “Herodias”, his brother Philip’s wife (Mark 6:17). When John the baptizer told him that was wrong, he locked John up and later Herodias had John beheaded. The thought of John rising from the dead disturbed him, so he wanted to see Jesus.

— Jesus fed five thousand men that were listening to Him teach from five loaves and two fish (9:13). This was a miracle of God multiplying food and providing for their needs. The people ate until they were full and “satisfied” and there were twelve baskets of broken pieces left. Some have a problem with that, I do not. To me, trusting God to raise you from the dead and yet not believing that He could multiply food does not synchronize. It is consistent with the entire Bible and God had multiplied food many times before with Elijah (1King 17:14), Elisha (2Kings 4:1) as well as raining mana from heaven for forty years (Exodus 16:35). Paul said that in the last days there would be those that would have a form of godliness, but deny its power and from such people, turn away (2Tim. 3:5). This was a real miracle and He did it at least twice (Mark 8:19).

— At the foot of Mount Hermon near Caesarea Phillippi (Matt 16:13, Mark 8:27), Jesus prayed alone. This was heathen territory where they worshipped the god “Pan.” Jesus had withdrawn there to get away from Herod’s area and the crowds that thronged them to have a quieter place to pray. After Jesus prayed alone, He asked the disciples “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They answered much like the reports that had reached Herod (9:7), John the Baptizer, Elijah, a prophet of old. Then Jesus asked them “Who do you say that I am?” and Peter answered, “The Christ of God.” Jesus went on to explain what would happen to the “Messiah” and explained that He would be killed, and the third day raised up.

Jesus warned them to tell this to no one. The Jews detested being subject to the Romans and longed for deliverance. They would follow almost anyone who claimed to be Messiah and there were many revolts. If people started claiming that Jesus was Messiah then the people would have taken it as political and a military action, missing the entirety of His teachings. Jesus made it clear that He would suffer many things, be rejected by the religious leaders, killed and raised up. The disciples found this very difficult to understand, they still had not learned it when Jesus was crucified.

— Right after Jesus spoke of His own cross, he spoke of another cross, the cross of His followers. There is a difference, His followers cross is not literal and their sufferings are not atoning, but it was (and is) very real. The follower of Jesus must “deny himself”, he cannot be self-centered. There is nothing self-indulgent about being a Christian. Crucifixion was just a method of capital punishment in those days and many were crucified, apparently even thieves. The disciples had probably seen a man “take up his cross” and go off with a little band of Roman soldiers on a one-way journey. They understood what He said. Following Him would be saying good-bye to your old life. Also to be ashamed of Him now, will result in Him being ashamed of us when He returns.

— Matthew 17, Mark 9 and Luke 9 record the transfiguration on the mountain. Jesus often went out to pray, but this time the appearance of His face was altered and His clothing became dazzling white like flashing lightning. Two men appeared, Moses and Elijah, and began talking with Him about His departure. Jesus probably prayed for long periods because His disciples often fell asleep during this time. When they awoke from the light, they saw Jesus transfigured. When Moses and Elijah prepared to leave, Peter offered to build them temporary shelters like a tent, maybe to get them to stay longer, but a cloud appeared and took them away. A voice spoke out of the cloud saying “This is My beloved Son, Listen to Him!” God had showed up in a cloud before (Exodus 40:34).

— They may have spent the night on the mountain because Luke 9:37 reads “the next day, when they had come down from the mountain” they met man with a son that was possessed by an evil spirit with symptoms like epilepsy. The ones up on the mountain in prayer had seen heavenly glory, but the ones down on the plain were struggling with defeat. The disciples could not cast it out, even though they had coped with demons successfully during their preaching tour. Jesus cast the spirit out. In Mark 9:28 the disciples ask Jesus why they could not cast it out and Jesus replied that this kind only comes out by prayer (and some manuscripts “and fasting.”) Jesus did not pray or fast at that moment, so He had prepared Himself before.

— The disciples actually got into an argument about which of them was the greatest (Luke 9:46). Jesus had just told them about His coming death for sinners. They were thinking of themselves, He was always thinking of others. He took a child and set him by His side helpless and unimportant, and said that whoever receives this little child in My name receives Me, and He who sent Me. Also, Jesus did not say that they would be the “Greatest”, He said they would “be great.” In the kingdom of God, people do not compare themselves with one another.

— Luke 9:49 makes a strange reference to John saying that “We saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him, because he doesn’t follow with us.” To which Jesus told them “Don’t forbid him, for he who is not against us is for us.” So we have someone casting out demons, when the disciples were recently unable to to do that, and they tried to stop him because he was not one of them. Did they really walk up and say “No, leave the demon in them because you are not one of us. If you were one of us, it would be ok.” It was not enough for the man to do what Jesus did, he needed to be in their circle as well. It is funny to see that denominational barriers started with the first generation of Jesus’ followers. “You are not one of us, we are the true chosen.”

— When the samaritan village rejected Jesus, James and John wanted to call down fire from heaven as Elijah did. Jesus nicknamed them “The sons of thunder” (Mark 3:17). Jesus rebuked them and told them that He did not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.

— There were many people that wanted to follow Jesus, but they had an excuse. The first man wanted to follow Jesus, but Jesus told him that He himself had no where to lay His head. Maybe the man had not counted the cost of what following Jesus would mean for him. The second wanted to bury his father, which implies that his father was not dead yet or he would not have been with Jesus at the time. He would have been home making funeral arrangements. He probably meant “wait until my father dies.” Jesus told him to let the spiritually dead, bury the dead, but you go and announce the Kingdom of God. The third man wanted to return home and tell them goodbye. This sounded fine but Jesus must have discerned some reluctance in the man to take a decisive step and pointed out that there was no room for those that look back when they are called to go forward.

Jesus heals a demon possessed man near the sea of galilee

Study Questions: (if your answers are very long, you may want to type them first in something like Word or Notepad, which doesn't require an Internet connection, then copy and paste (Ctrl-A to select, Ctrl-V to copy, Ctrl-V to paste), to prevent mishaps.  Also, there is a 3K character limit, so if they are super long, feel free to post more than once, and just answer a couple of questions at a time. Also, you are welcome to post any questions you may have. We look forward to your thoughts!)

1) When Jesus sent his disciples out to minister, He equipped them with "authority over all demons and to cure diseases”, but did not allow any other resources, such as money or a change of clothing. What do you think His purpose was in this plan? Have you experienced times of God’s deliverance and healing? Feel free to share.

2) Jesus fed five thousand people with a bit of bread and fish. Why do you think Jesus provided for them out of that, as opposed to creating the food, like the manna given to Moses’ people? Feel free to share if you have experienced times of God’s provision in your life.

3) In Luke 9:23, Jesus instructed anyone who wishes to follow Him to “let him deny himself and take up his cross daily”. What does this mean to us in our daily walk as Christ followers?

4) Though Jesus had, in Luke 9:1, given his disciples authority over all demons, they were not able to remove the demon from the boy in Luke 9:40. This section shows that there was a gap between the authority given to them and its fulfillment that the disciples could not bridge. Why do you think this occurred? What can we do to prevent it from happening to us?

5) In Luke 9:48, Jesus said that “he who is least among you is one who is great.” as a response to His disciples argument about who was the greatest. Why do think the disciples would argue about such a thing in front of their Master? What can we do to cultivate the outlook of the “least amongst you” in ourselves?

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