Tag Archives: Luke 8

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 216/260: Jairus

Read Matthew 9:18-19, 23-26; Luke 8:40-42, 49-56

Do Not Be Afraid; Only Believe

How heartbreaking for Jairus. His twelve-year-old daughter was on the brink of death. Desperate, this ruler of the synagogue sought out Jesus, who was healing many. He approached Jesus, and before he made his request known, Jairus “fell down at Jesus’ feet” (Luke 8:41); he “worshiped Him” (Matthew 9:18). How often do we come to the Lord and beg for a blessing without first preparing ourselves to worship Him? How often do we demand things of God, but never give Him the proper reverence He desires?

Jairus worshiped Jesus, and he told the Lord about his daughter who was dying. Jesus agreed to come to see the ill child, but He was delayed because “the multitudes thronged Him” (Luke 8:42), and He paused to heal the woman with the flow of blood (Luke 8:43-48). After that healing, someone from Jairus’ house came and said, “Your daughter is dead. Do not trouble the Teacher” (Luke 8:49).

Can you imagine what went through the man’s mind at this point? Perhaps he blamed the woman who detained Jesus for her healing. Maybe he became angry with the multitudes that made it difficult for Jesus to move about freely. The Lord, however, put Jairus’ mind at ease, saying, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.”

How often do we allow fear to hinder our faith? We claim to believe that God “is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us” (Ephesians 3:20), but do we live that way? Do we truly believe that God provides His people with “a spirit…of power and of love and of a sound mind” or do we give in to that “spirit of fear” (2 Timothy 1:7)?

It is far past time for Christians to be bold in the faith, knowing that God can and will accomplish His will. “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).

Jairus’ little girl was raised from the dead by the power of Jesus. How much more can He do for you, if you believe and work toward the accomplishment of His will?

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 215/260: The Woman Who Touched Jesus’ Garment

Read Mark 5:24-34; Luke 8:43-48

Tremendous Blessings

How seriously do we view sin? When we are physically ill, whether it be with cancer or some other damaging disease, do we not try to resolve the issue? The woman who had suffered from “a flow of blood for twelve years” (Luke 8:43) had gone to great extremes to find a cure. Luke says that she “had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any” (Luke 8:43), while Mark adds the fact that she “rather grew worse” (Mark 5:26).

Jesus arrives on the scene, healing many, and this woman is convinced, “If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well” (Mark 5:28). Jesus is surrounded and thronged by many people as He travels to the house of Jairus, and the woman reaches out and touches “the border of His garment” (Luke 8:44). Immediately she is healed. No more doctors. No more blood. No more wasted resources for an incurable disease.

This woman demonstrated faith in the power of Jesus and was blessed because of that faith. Her faith was not merely a belief that He could heal her, but it motivated her to seek that healing. Had she never left her house, she never could have been blessed in such a tremendous way.

Let’s return now to the question at the beginning of this devotional. How seriously do we view sin? There is no doctor on earth that can heal us of the malady of sin. There is no cure in this world for it. But if we believe in Jesus’ power to save and actively seek Him and demonstrate our faith in His power to cleanse us of the stain of sin, we can be blessed in a tremendous way!

So many, however, refuse to go to the Great Physician. They refuse to take the medicine He prescribes. They refuse to exercise their spiritual muscles and feed on the meat of His Word. Friends, we will never be healed of sin if we do not follow His remedy!

Jesus wants to surround you with people that love you in His church. He wants to cleanse you in the waters of baptism. He wants to see you exercise faith and grow stronger in His Word and in His kingdom. He wants you to bring others to Him for that same power to heal their spiritual disease of sin. Reach out to Jesus, obey His commands, and let Him save you.

Monday through Friday with People of Faith: Day 214/260: Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Susanna

Read Luke 8:1-3

Your Role In His Kingdom

The role of women in Christianity has been a contentious topic over the years. But should it be? Jesus never relegated women to a lesser role in His ministry, nor did He demean them or expect less of them than He did the men that surrounded Him. In Luke 8, three women were named who helped the Lord during His earthly sojourn, but there is also the note of “many others who provided for Him from their substance” (Luke 8:2-3).

The first of these is Mary Magdalene. What do you think of when you hear that name? Does the word “prostitute” pop into your head? There is not one shred of evidence that Mary Magdalene was ever a prostitute or that she was the “sinful woman” who washed Jesus’ feet with her tears at Simon’s house in Luke 7. Mary Magdalene has been slandered for centuries without cause; may we here and forever more stop associating her with that sinful lifestyle that so many others have assumed.

What we do know about Mary Magdalene is that Jesus had healed her of demon possession (Mark 16:9). She was the first to see the empty tomb after the Lord’s resurrection and reported such to the disciples (John 20:1-2). She was the first person to whom the Lord appeared in resurrected form (Mark 16:9). Luke further identifies her as a woman who financially supported Jesus’ ministry.

The second woman, Joanna, is identified as “the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward” (Luke 8:3). Some opine that Chuza was the centurion of Luke 7, and at the healing of the steward, he and his family (including his wife Joanna) were converted. Others identify him as the nobleman of John 4 whose child was healed. Whatever the case, Joanna was no fickle disciple. She remained faithful to the end of the Lord’s human life and beyond, going to the tomb with other women in Luke 24:10.

Of Susanna, we have no further mention or information in the Scriptures, but she is named here as a faithful supporter of the Lord along with “many others.” While there may be things women are not authorized to do (1 Timothy 2:12), it is sinful to suggest they are not important or to relegate them to a lesser role in the kingdom of Christ. Everyone is important and everyone has a role to play in His church.

Rejection or Reception? (Luke 8:26-56)

Rejection or Reception

Luke 8:26-56

I. The rejection of the country of the Gadarenes (Luke 8:26-37)

    A. Despite a mighty miracle, the people asked Jesus to depart (Luke 8:37)
    B. Jesus left a witness behind (Luke 8:38-39)

II. The reception of the people in Capernaum (Luke 8:40)

    A. The healing of the unclean woman (Luke 8:41-48)
    B. The raising of Jairus’s daughter (Luke 8:49-56)

III. Application

    A. Do we fear change? (Luke 8:37)
    B. What do we value? (Mark 5:16-17)
    C. Do we live our lives day-by-day “waiting for Him”? (Luke 8:40)

The Seed, the Soil and the Sower (Luke 8:4-15)

The Seed The Soil and the Sower Luke 8

Luke 8:4-15

I. The seed is the Word of God (Luke 8:11)

    A. Warnings against false doctrine (1 Timothy 1:3-4; 4:1-2; Titus 3:9)
    B. Preach the Word (2 Timothy 4:2; Titus 2:1)
    C. We can only learn about Jesus through the Word (2 Timothy 3:15; James 1:21)

II. Four types of soil

    A. The wayside (Luke 8:5, 12; cf. Romans 10:17)
    B. The rock (Luke 8:6, 13; cf. Mark4:17; Matthew 16:24-26; 2 Timothy 3:12; Mark 10:29-30)
    C. The thorns (Luke 8:7, 14; cf. Matthew 28:19-20; 2 Timothy 4:10)
    D. The good ground (Luke 8:8, 15)

III. The sower’s responsibility: “Sow as you go, wherever you go!”

    A. “As you are going, make disciples” (Matthew 28:19-20)
    B. Every child of God is expected to be a sower (Luke 8:15)

Read the New Testament in a year, one chapter a day, five days a week

Day 8/260: Read Luke 8

What kind of reception do you give to religious teaching? That’s what the soil represents in Christ’s parable of the sower.

There are some who hear the Word but it has no real impact on them whatsoever. If you’ve been reading this far into the year, this likely does not describe you.

Others hear with joy, but don’t really root themselves into the Word so when the going gets tough, their interest withers and dies. Hopefully you will stick with reading the Bible every day, whether you use these devotions or not.

A third category includes those who hear the Word and start to grow, but other stuff gets in the way. Distractions at school or work, with sports teams or hobbies, with relationships that do not include God.

Finally, there is the “noble and good heart.” This is what God desires. He wants you to take His truth and “keep it and bear fruit with patience.” If your heart is filled with good, your mouth will speak good things. You will impact those around you in a positive way. You can and should grow into a sower of the seed, the Word of God.

Memory (Fill in the blanks)

Luke 6:45. “A ______________ man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth ______________; and en ______________ man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth ______________. For out of the abundance of the ______________ his mouth speaks.”

Pray

Pray that you can overcome temptation and continue learning and growing in God’s Word. Pray that you can become a sower yourself and be a godly influence on your friends.

Identify Prospects

Evangelism

          No one likes to waste time. The sad fact of the matter is this: most people will reject the truth. Jesus said, “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13-14). Despite this fact, we still bear the responsibility of taking the gospel to those around us.
          Our duty is to obey God without regard to how people respond. You never know how a kind word or deed will impact a person, and in fact, you may never see that impact. Paul and Apollos worked together in spreading the gospel; Paul said, “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase” (1 Corinthians 3:6).
          “Perhaps many of you have heard the story of the gospel preacher who a number of years ago held a meeting in a country school. He thought the meeting was a failure because during the meeting only one little freckled faced girl obeyed the gospel. This little girl grew up and married and reared five boys and all of them because gospel preachers—the Dunn brothers—who have led many people to the Lord through their faithful preaching of the Word of God” (Otis Gatewood, You Can Do Personal Work, p. 177)
          We must scatter the seed. Jesus tells the parable of the sower in Luke 8:5-15. The sower was not concerned with the quality of the soil; the Scriptures simply state that he “went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside…Some fell on rock…And some fell among thorns…But others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold.” What’s the lesson? Wherever you are, whoever you’re with, spread the seed.
          We can then start to identify prospects by seeing how others react to the Word. Jesus identifies four types of soil in this parable.
          First, “the wayside.” The seed there “was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it” (Luke 8:5). He later explains that the wayside represents people “who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved” (8:12). These are the non-believers. Remember that the seed must be sown before we write anyone off. What is the first step in the plan of salvation? Hear! Without first hearing the message, there is no possibility for belief (Romans 10:17). Once they have heard it, if they reject it, then they are in “the wayside.”
          Next, the “rock.” The seed, “as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture” (Luke 8:6). There are going to be people who will gladly listen to what you have to say, but they don’t allow roots to develop, “and in time of temptation fall away” (8:13). Mark’s parallel account sheds more light on the “temptation” under consideration. Mark quotes the Master Teacher as saying, “Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble” (Mark 4:17). Some may expect the Christian life to be easy, but one must make painful sacrifices and face trials in this life (Matthew 16:24-26; 2 Timothy 3:12). Despite the pain we may experience in this life, there is joy that rests in the hope of everlasting life (Mark 10:29-30).
          Third in the parable, the “thorns” which “sprang up with (the seed) and choked it” (Luke 8:7). Jesus says, “Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity” (8:14). Does the evangelist bear any responsibility in this? Possibly. Consider in the Great Commission recorded by Matthew, Jesus said to “make disciples…baptizing them…teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:19-20). We need to make disciples and baptize, but keep on teaching after they put on Christ! Some will find the draw of the world too strong, and their desires for the temporary pleasures of sin will outweigh their desire for God. This is possibly what happened to Demas, who forsook Paul because he “loved this present world” (2 Timothy 4:10). The distractions of this world are many, and we must be on guard against materialism (1 Timothy 6:6-10). Still, the church must make an effort to keep the saved saved.
          Finally, the “good ground,” in which the seed “sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold” (Luke 8:8). “But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience” (8:15). They will hear, believe, confess, repent, be baptized, and be faithful. Can we predict who these individuals will be among our friends? Sometimes, maybe. However, we must be cautious that we do not pre-judge and present the gospel to only those who we think are “good ground.” Until that seed is sown, we do not know how someone will respond! Sow as you go, wherever you go!

Discussion and Action

1. Have you noticed any of these attitudes in your friends when you talk about spiritual things? What are some of the negative reactions you have had to the gospel? What are some of the positive?

2. Identify types of “times of temptation” or persecutions that can cause a person to fall away.

3. What about the “cares, riches, and pleasures of life” that choke out the truth?

4. Recite the six steps of the gospel plan of salvation and where you can find Scriptures for each step.

5. Memorize the text of another verse in the gospel plan of salvation.

6. You should have five names on your index card. Have you talked to them about the gospel? Are you still praying for them? Don’t ever give up!