Friday, August 17, 2018

A Savior for All People

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.” 
- Luke 19:1-10

We hear the verse every year at Christmastime. It’s so familiar, sometimes the words might just slip by us. So now, in the middle of August, let’s take a moment to listen a little closer as an angel appears to the shepherds on that first Christmas night: “I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people” (Luke 2:10).  

Today I want to point out a tiny little three-letter word: “ALL the people.” Because that tiny little word makes ALL the difference. It’s at the heart of Luke’s gospel account.

You see, the Bible gives us four different gospels for a reason. Each of the four gospel historians presents a slightly different perspective. Matthew wrote to a Jewish audience and highlights Jesus as the King of the Jews. Mark wrote to a Gentile audience and presents Jesus as a powerful miracle-worker. John wrote his gospel account some 50 years after Jesus ascended into heaven, so he was writing to a generation that hadn’t personally walked or talked with Jesus. And he presents Jesus as the Son of God.

Luke intended for his gospel account to be read by both Jews and Gentiles, and he presents Jesus as the loving savior of the world—not just the savior of Jews, not just the savior of men, not just the savior of the rich or famous. Luke documents example after example of Jesus being a savior available for every man, woman and child.

Consider this: The word “salvation” isn’t used at all in Matthew or Mark, and it’s only used once in John. But it’s used six times in Luke. Luke also uses the word “savior” twice and uses the verb form “to save” more than any other gospel writer. So, Luke puts a big emphasis on Jesus as the world’s savior. Here are a few specifics:

#1: Jesus is the loving savior of NON-JEWS. There are a number of examples of this in Luke’s gospel account. For instance: the genealogy of Jesus in Luke 3. When Matthew recorded Jesus’ genealogy in his gospel account, since he was writing to a Jewish audience, he only went as far back as Abraham. But when Luke records Jesus’ genealogy, since he’s writing to all people everywhere, he takes Jesus’ genealogy all the way back to Adam. It’s also worth mentioning that Luke is the only non-Jewish author in the entire New Testament.

#2: Jesus is the loving savior of WOMEN AND CHILDREN. Both Jewish and Gentile societies in Luke’s day were male-dominated. But Luke’s gospel proves that Jesus is an equal opportunity savior for men, women and children. From the very first chapter, women play a prominent role. Of the four gospel writers, Luke alone records the Angel Gabriel’s announcement to Mary that she would give birth to Jesus. Only Luke records Mary’s visit to Elizabeth after she received the angel’s message. In chapter 10, only Luke records the well-known account of Mary sitting at the feet of Jesus while Martha ran around like a chicken with her head cut off.

And Luke spends more time on babies and children than any other gospel writer. Luke records more details of Jesus’ birth than any other gospel writer. Only Luke records the dedication of Jesus at the temple when he was eight days old and the account of him staying behind at the temple without his parents’ knowledge when he was 12 years old. Matthew, Mark and Luke all record for us the account of Jesus blessing the children who were brought to him despite his disciples’ protests. But only Luke points out that people weren’t only bringing children but babies to Jesus.

#3) Jesus is the loving savior of the POOR and the NOBODIES in society.
At Christmas time we often talk about how shepherds in Jesus’ day were nobodies. They weren’t counted in the census. They weren’t allowed in a synagogue. They were basically considered to be half-human. So, aren’t you thankful that Luke took the time to document that visit by the angel to the shepherds in the hills of Bethlehem? The angel told them, in Luke 2:11-12: “Today in the town of David a savior has been born to you: he is Christ the Lord.” Isn’t that awesome!? “A savior has been born to YOU.”

In Luke 7:22, Jesus makes it clear that he didn’t come to earth to preach the good news merely to “the poor in spirit” as Matthew states. Jesus says he came to preach the good news to “the poor”—period. In Luke 14:13, as Jesus is teaching his followers how to throw a party that will please God, he tells them to invite “the poor, the crippled, the lame and the blind” to the party.

Jesus is the savior of all mankind: not just the savior of Jews, but the savior of non-Jews as well. Not just the savior of men, but also the savior of women and children. And not just the savior of the rich and famous, but the savior of the poor and the nobodies as well. So if you ever find yourself feeling like a nobody, this gospel is good news indeed!

Dane Davis is the Lead Pastor of First Christian Church in Victorville. For more information,
visit  and join us for worship Sundays at 10 a.m.

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