Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Luke: Jesus, The Son Of Man For All Mankind
Part XXVII: Christ's Identity As God's Savior By His Abundant Validation Of His Teachings In Life
(Luke 8:1-3 et al.)
  1. Introduction
    1. If Christ is the supernatural Creator God's true Savior of the world, we should expect His teachings not only to be validated in life, but to be abundantly validated that way!
    2. Luke 8:1-3 in view of the preceding context reveals this was the case in Christ's earthly life as follows:
  2. Christ's Identity As God's Savior By His Abundant Validation Of His Teachings In Life, Luke 8:1-3.
    1. Jesus had critiqued the Scribes and Pharisees in Luke 7:31-34 of false externalism for judging Himself and John the Baptizer for their varying styles of ministry, cf. Bible Knowledge Com., N. T. , p. 223.
    2. In Luke 7:35, Jesus concluded "The ones who were following Jesus and John were proof enough of the correctness of their teaching" regardless of criticism to the contrary by the religious leaders, Ibid.
    3. Well, as evidence that this teaching was true, Luke 7:36-50 had contrasted the false externalism of a Pharisee, Simon with a sinful woman who had been justified by God through faith in Christ, showing the coarse lovelessness of the unforgiven Simon and the abundant love of the forgiven woman for Christ!
    4. However, going farther to show how Jesus' teachings had ABUNDANTLY affected His followers, and thus how VALID was His MINISTRY , Luke reports amazing testimonies of His disciples in Luke 8:1-3:
      1. Luke reported that as Jesus continued to minister the glad tidings of God's kingdom in every city and village along with His twelve disciples, a large number of women whose lives had been dramatically altered as had been the life of the sinful woman in Luke 7:36-50 followed Jesus to support Him, 8:2-3.
      2. Christ's gaining financial support from so many women would have been viewed as a scandalous situation in His era (Ibid., p. 224), but since these women had been forgiven much, they loved the Lord much as did the sinful woman in Simon's house, so He risked His reputation to receive their support!
      3. Specifically, the individual testimonies of these converted women is briefly given in Luke 8:2-3:
        1. Several women who had been demon-possessed followed Christ, giving of their financial means out of deep appreciation for His deliverance and salvation of them, Luke 8:2a, 3b.
        2. Mary Magdalene was one of these formerly demon-possessed women, and Christ had exorcised her of seven demons, Luke 8:2b, 3b. The number seven often denotes completion in Scripture, so Mary Magdalene had apparently been totally controlled by demons before the Lord had saved her, Ibid.
        3. Another woman who supported the Lord was Joanna, wife of Chuza, Herod Antipas' steward, Luke 8:3a; Zond. Pict. Ency. of the Bible, vol. Three, p. 597. Since a steward was a man of rank who managed his overseer's finances ( Ryrie Study Bible, KJV, 1978 ed., ftn. to Luke 8:3) this woman used money to support Jesus that her husband had earned from managing the finances of the king who had executed John the Baptizer! Thus, Christ's ministry had been so effective that it had led a woman to funnel some of the money of the king who had killed the righteous John to support Jesus, a great testimony to the validity of the power of Jesus' ministry and teaching. Indeed, Luke 23:55-24:1, 10, reveals Joanna still followed Jesus at His death and burial, and came to His tomb bearing spices to anoint His body on the day of His resurrection!
        4. Luke finally named Susanna as another woman of this group, and though nothing else is known of her in Scripture, Luke adds that "many others" joined Susanna to support the Lord by their incomes, Luke 8:3b,c. The massive capacity of Jesus to deliver many lost, oppressed women in a patristic culture, and His willingness to risk scandal to receive their financial support given in appreciation for His deliverance of them reveals the great grace, compassion and power of God in Christ's life!
Lesson: Jesus' ministry and teaching was ABUNDANTLY validated in LIFE as seen in the MANY WOMEN from whom He ACCEPTED FINANCIAL SUPPORT at the RISK of His REPUTATION in a patristic culture due to their MASSIVE APPRECIATION for His SALVATION in their LIVES!

Application: (1) May we BELIEVE that Jesus is the Creator God's TRUE Savior of the world! (2) May we rejoice in the VALIDITY of God's work in Christ as seen in CHANGED LIVES TODAY!