“Jesus is an enigma wrapped in a mystery,” says Dr. Bill Creasy. Then precedes to unwrap parts of the enigma and mystery. Covering Josephus’ writing in AD 37-95, “He was the Messiah;” Tacitus’ acknowledgement of Christus but his hate towards evil Christians; also, Pliny the Younger and Lucian of Samosata’s descriptions of Christians and their miraculous ways begins to unravel parts of the enigmatic and mysterious. Dr. Creasy further unwraps what gospels are and how textual criticism works so that we can have confidence in knowing what we are studying is accurate. In the study of “gospel” we understand it reflects “the understanding of who Jesus Christ is and what he did, in light of a living faith tradition, guided by the Holy Spirit, 30-60 years after the events it portrays.”
Imagine what it was like to be one of the very last Christians in the world being hunted down and mocked. Yet they followed Matthew 28 and the commandment of spreading the good news. In fact it spread like wildfire from Jerusalem to Damascus, Antioch, Galatia, Collosae, Ephesus, Philippi, Thessalonica, Corinth, and finally Rome. Eventually, they decided they needed to write what was happening when it became apparent Jesus wasn’t coming back quiet as quick as they originally expected. Jesus gathered Apostles and commissioned them to go make disciples of all nations, baptizing and teaching. Luke is one of the all-time grand stories in all of literature revealing beautiful insights into the enigma and mystery of Jesus in a way that presents him in the truth of who he is. Interestingly, Luke is the only gentile writer of the New Testament books. Who was Luke writing to? An early Christian, Theophilus, who loved God.
Luke 1:1-4 is a perfectly structured sentence. I am told a masterpiece of Greek writing. However, after this Luke changes everything up, his writing becoming colloquial as he tells us a remarkably true and factual story. His narrators and characters have distinction voices that help define who they are. This is the first time this is ever done in classical literature. Luke’s narrator’s voice is distinctly Christian and part of a believing community; however, the characters and their unique voice is what drives the story forward. If you are interested in learning more about Luke Dr. Creasy is an excellent resource. You can join me on this study if you would like.