Reigniting Your Passion for Christ
Luke, the beloved physician, sends you his greetings.
One writer describes the impact of Jesus Christ on the world this way: “Along with two thieves, Jesus was executed by the authorities about 2,000 years ago. Yet today, from countless paintings, statues, and buildings, from literature and history, from personality and institution, from profanity, popular songs, and entertainment media, from confession and controversy, from legend and ritual–Jesus stands quietly at the center of the contemporary world, as he himself predicted. He so graced the ugly instrument on which he died that the cross has become the most widely exhibited and recognized symbol on Earth.”
It’s easy for our Christian faith to go stale. We say the right words and go through the right motions while having a cold heart toward God. One thing that causes our faith to become stagnant is we forget that Christianity is not about a set of ideas; it’s about the most important person in all history–Jesus Christ, who came from heaven to earth not only to provide a way for us to escape hell after we die, but also to show us a better way of living before we die.
Nothing rejuvenates our Christian life more than carefully observing Jesus Christ’s example of how to live–by studying His words and by mimicking His actions, attitudes, and affections.
During the next few weeks, we will discover how to reignite your spiritual passion for Christ by observing the gospel of Luke. Interestingly, Luke never identifies himself as the author of this book or its sequel, the book of Acts. But church history tells us it was Luke who wrote this book. Luke was a Gentile physician who was a faithful friend and fellow worker with the apostle Paul. In Colossians 4:14 Paul refers to Luke as the “beloved physician.” And in Philemon 24, Paul refers to Luke as one of “my fellow workers.”
Tradition says Luke was from Antioch of Syria. You hear a lot about Syria in the news today. He may have started as a slave, but his master decided to free Luke and paid his way through medical school. Luke most likely went to the university at Tarsus. Does that ring a bell with anybody? Who else was from Tarsus? The apostle Paul. And that is probably where he came to know Luke. Perhaps they got to know one another in the university before either one of them was converted to faith in Jesus Christ. Other people think that perhaps Luke became a Christian when Paul returned to Tarsus in Acts 9 after Paul’s conversion. We don’t know exactly how they got together, but after they were both saved, Paul and Luke became fellow workers and missionaries together. And the ministry God entrusted to them would change the world forever.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Reigniting Your Passion for Christ” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2016.
Quote from Dallas Willard, “The Divine Conspiracy” (New York: Harper, 1998), 11-12.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.