The Gospel of Luke Devotional
- Day 18 Luke Chapter 18
- Bible Reading: Luke 18:1-43
- Focus Scripture Luke 18:8 “I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”
- Luke 18:35-43; Luke 5:17-26; Mark 10:46-52; Mark 2:1-12
Luke 18:35-43 retells the facts of a blind beggar named Bartimaeus. He probably frequented the same area every day to ask people to, “spare him some change.” In our world of electronic money, this seems like an odd question. No one really carries cash in our society, but in this ancient civilization, they did. Bartimaeus’ appearance likely left something to be desired; he may have smelled bad and wore tattered clothing. His constant begging irritated those that had to pass by him on their way to shop, work, or home. He was as a public nuisance. However, Bartimaeus knew Jesus the Son of David was passing by. And he called out to Him. Begging…not for money or food, but mercy. But, who was he with??? Bartimaeus, had people telling him to quiet down.
Luke 5:17-26 retells the facts of another healing involving a paralytic. This man lived on a mat or stretcher which could be carried by able bodies. He needed to have someone help him bathe, go to the bathroom, and get dressed. (Doing these things for someone else every day is exhausting work and sometimes embarrassing for the injured.) His caregivers, upon hearing Jesus was near decided to take this man to the only one that could change his situation. These caregivers went the extra mile by, not only getting him there but cutting out the roof to lower him inside where Jesus would ‘see’ him. I can imagine the paralytic looking around the crowded room as he came down from the rooftop while others looked at him in disbelief. These believers risked injury and humiliations if their efforts were not recognized by Jesus. Their belief was so strong that they determined to get the paralytic the help he needed. Who was he with??? The paralytic had faith-filled friends that wanted his complete healing and restoration.
Luke 18:9-14 In the facts of the Pharisees versus the tax collector we see the same types of differences. The Pharisees’ posture spoke volumes; they were saying: “it’s not me so, I don’t care if you need help. It’s not me so, I will pray to God, that all may hear that I’m not like you.” In contrast, the tax collector didn’t feel worthy enough to raise his eyes to heaven. He stood off at a distance and prayed with reverence to the all mighty God. Repenting of sins, praying, and asking for forgiveness. The tax collector’s posture before God was like that of those who lowered the paralytic down from the roof. They were humbling themselves by bringing the paralytic to Jesus instead of requesting HE come to them. The ‘neighbors’ that told the blind beggar to be quiet weren’t concerned with his well-being or even the healing that was possible. They were happy to not have his problems and did were not part of the solution.
In life we will have those who truly want the best for us and even take us to Christ. We also have those who will silence us if we need answers or are in need of Christ’s mercy. Who we surround ourselves with will decide how determined we are in seeking God for ourselves. Bartimaeus yelled out. The paralytic, was carried. Bartimaeus pleaded for mercy. Jesus heard his cry. The paralytic was lowered in front of Jesus. Jesus saw the faith of the paralytic and his friends. The people surrounding Bartimaeus silenced him. The people surrounding the paralytic received a blessing. No matter who you are with, you will still have to answer for you. How difficult are you making your life by the company you keep?
- What are you indifferent to?
- What sacrifices do you make in order to spend time with God? (Sacrifice is to give something valuable to God.)
- What possessions are you willing to give up or lend to someone in need?
A Few Points:
- Luke 18:1-8 Jesus tells the parable of the persistent widow.
- Additional Reading Indifferent to Persistence
- Luke 18:9-14 Jesus tells the parable of the two men who prayed.
- Luke 18:15-17 Jesus blesses the little children. The disciples pushed them away but Jesus welcomed them.
- Luke 18:18-30 Jesus speaks to the rich young man. This man was willing to follow all the commands except letting go of his possessions. This man was a slave to his wealth which did not enable him to follow Jesus wholeheartedly. The disciples questioned Jesus as well wondering if their sacrifices were good. The disciples had given up their homes, families, and careers to follow Him. Jesus taught that all of this would be returned to them abundantly in eternity. The things that are impossible with people are possible with God.
- Luke 18:31-34 Jesus predicts His death a third time, and the twelve disciples did not understand.
- Luke 18:35-43 Jesus heals the blind beggar. Today we may need to do more in order to assist someone in need. We may need to take extra time to go to the bank or even ask what could we do to help. Depending on how large your city is the homeless and hopeless may blend in with everyone else. Don’t pass them by or wish they were quiet, ask how you can help.
*Our faith given to us by God can be used to save us from death through the salvation. He freely gives to those who repent.*