Click HERE to download.
The Eyes of All Were Fixed on Him
Text: Luke 4:1-30
Tony Chute, Interim Pastor
Overview: Jesus’s public ministry begins with the devil tempting Him to serve Himself rather than the Father; to live for this world rather than the next; and to draw attention to Himself instead of relying on the Spirit. By perfectly overcoming these temptations, Jesus succeeded where Israel had previously failed and He defined His ministry accordingly. Luke also introduces us to the preaching of Jesus, which was received well at first but caused a great controversy in His hometown of Nazareth. The controversy occurred because Jesus claimed to be the promised Messiah and He pronounced judgment on those who refused to recognize His rightful claim. This section of Luke’s gospel thus provides several indicators of a faithful ministry modeled by Jesus.
01. A faithful minister is one whose life matches the message of the gospel.
02. A faithful minister is one who places a primacy on preaching and carefully handles the Word of God.
03. A faithful minister is one who balances grace and judgment, applying each where needed without respect to persons.
04. A faithful minister is one who relies on the Spirit to advance the gospel and to transform lives.
Questions For Discussion & Discovery
1. What was at stake with each of the temptations of Jesus? What is the problem with minimizing these temptations based on the fact that Jesus did not have a sin nature, or that God knew Jesus would not sin in advance? What is the significance of Jesus’s overcoming temptation by referring to the Word of God?
2. Note the various references to the Holy Spirit in this section. What does it mean to be “full of the Spirit” (4:1), “led by the Spirit,” (4:1), and “in the power of the Spirit” (4:14). Do you find yourself relying on the Spirit of God for your growth and accomplishments as a Christian?
3. Put yourself in the shoes of the people at the synagogue at Nazareth. Would you have received Jesus’s claim to be the Messiah? What evidence follows this text that indicated the truth of His claim (4:31-41)?
4. Jesus stated that “no prophet is acceptable in his hometown,” and by this, He noted a universal application beyond His own situation. Do you find it hard to acknowledge the spiritual gifting or leadership of those that you know very well? How can we overcome such biases?
5. Jesus could have healed more people in Capernaum, but he announced His departure stating that He was sent to preach to other towns (4:43). What does this announcement suggest about the primacy of preaching the gospel as it relates to meeting the physical needs of others? Are the two mutually exclusive?
For Further Reading: D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Preaching and Preachers (Zondervan: Anniversary Edition, 2012).