Following His mountain message, Jesus returns to Capernaum and resumes His ministry. I really like LaGard Smith's comments in The Daily Bible reading (10/27):

"Such perceptive and authoritative teaching has obviously won the attention of the multitudes, who have long been disillusioned by the empty ritualism and superficiality of their present religious system. ... No doubt by this time the religious leaders are also becoming increasingly aware of Jesus' extraordinary power. Instead of accepting it as divine, they accuse Jesus of having power from Satan. What follows is a scathing rebuke of the Pharisees for their disbelief and hypocrisy, and an urgent call for repentance. The events leading to this confrontation begin to unfold as Jesus makes His way from the mountain back to Capernaum."

Reading

  • Matt. 8:5-13; Luke 7:1-10
  • Luke 7:11-17
  • Luke 7:18-23; Matt. 11:2-6
  • Matt. 11:7-15; Luke 7:24-30
  • Luke 7:31-35; Matt. 11:16-19
  • Luke 7:36-8:3
  • Matt. 12:22-30; Mark 3:20,22-27; Luke 11:14-23
  • Matt. 12:31-37; Mark 3:21,28-30
  • Matt. 12:38-42; Luke 11:29-32
  • Matt. 12:43-45; Luke 11:24-28
  • Matt. 12:46-50; Mark 3:31-35; Luke 8:19-21
  • Luke 11:33-13:17

Jesus returns to Capernaum

Centurion's Slave Healed

  • As Jesus entered the city of Capernaum, the Jewish elders approached Him seeking His help to heal the centurion's beloved servant.
  • On the way to the centurion's home, the centurion sent friends to stop Jesus and ask Him to simply give the command, and his servant would be healed.
  • Jesus was amazed at this man's faith and healed the servant "remotely" at that moment.
  1. Why did the Roman centurion stop Jesus from coming all the way to his house in order to heal the slave?
  2. Why was Jesus amazed at the centurion?
  3. When you think about the centurion's response, are you amazed at his faith? Why or why not?

Jesus goes to Nain

  • As Jesus entered the town of Nain along with His disciples and a large crowd, a widow's son was being carried out in a coffin. Jesus was touched by her grief and He commanded the young man to arise, which he did.
  • News of Jesus spread throughout the surrounding country.
  • John the Baptist's disciples told him about these events and sent messengers from prison to Jesus to confirm that He was the Messiah. Jesus gives a message of encouragement back to John and then addresses John's greatness in the kingdom.
  • The common people had accepted John's teachings and were baptized by him; however the religious leaders "had rejected GOD's purpose for themselves..." and were not baptized by John.
  1. What does Jesus' actions regarding the widow of Nain teach us about our Savior?
  2. Explain Jesus' words in Luke 7:31-35.
  3. Compare the actions of the religious leaders of Jesus' day with the religious leaders of today.

Dinner with a Pharisee

  • A Pharisee invited Jesus to dinner. While Jesus reclined at the table, a sinful woman from the town came and wept at Jesus' feet and dried His feet with her hair. She then kissed His feet, and poured alabaster perfume on them.
  • Simon's thought was on whether Jesus knew the type of life the woman had led. He showed no empathy or compassion upon the woman. Jesus, of course, knew his thoughts.
  • Jesus compared the actions of Simon with the sinful woman:
    • Simon didn't wash Jesus' feet; the woman did.
    • Simon did not kiss Jesus; the woman had not ceased kissing Jesus' feet since she entered the room.
    • Simon did not put oil on Jesus' head; the woman poured perfume on His feet.
    • Simon, Jesus said, had been forgiven little and therefore loved little; the woman had been forgiven much and loved much in return.
  • Simon's other guests questioned among themselves as to who Jesus was that He could forgive sins.

Jesus travels from place to place in Galilee

  • Jesus traveled about preaching the good news of the kingdom of GOD.
  • The apostles were with Him, and some women followed Him, including Mary Magdalene from whom seven demons were cast out; Joanna the wife of Cuza, the manager of Herod's household; Suzanna; and many others. These women supported Jesus and the apostles from their own means.
  1. How do you view the woman in these verses?
  2. If you were in the room watching these things, what do you think you would have done?
  3. How does a person's perception of how much they've been forgiven affect how deeply they love?
  4. What is the truth about how much each of us has been forgiven?

Jesus Accused of Casting out Demons by Satan

  • While Jesus and His apostles were eating dinner in a house a huge crowd gathered and brought the meal to a stop. The people brought in a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute. Jesus healed him, and the people marveled, wondering if Jesus was the Son of David. But the Pharisees accused Jesus of casting out demons by the power of Satan. Jesus refuted that, knowing their thoughts.
  • Jesus said that any sin will be forgiven except to blaspheme against the Holy Spirit -- that will never be forgiven.
  • "For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks."
  • Jesus' family (mother and brothers) came to get Him because they thought He was crazy and that He had an unclean spirit (Mark 3:21).
  1. Explain your understanding of Mark 3:27 (binding the strong man).
  2. What does the statement, "For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks." teach us about our words?

Religious Leaders Ask for a Sign

  • Some Pharisees and Jewish leaders asked Jesus for a miraculous sign. Jesus said that no sign would be given except that He would be in the belly of the earth for 3 days and nights, just as Jonah was in the fish.
  • Jesus said the people of Nineveh would stand up in judgment with this generation and condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah.
  • Jesus talked about the process of an evil spirit, after it has left a man, returns with seven other evil spirits more wicked than itself, and they dwell in the man's house. The end is worse than the beginning. So it will be with this wicked generation.
  • "Blessed are those who hear the word of GOD and obey it."
  • Jesus taught that whomever does the will of the Father is His brother and sister and mother. In other words, spiritual family trumps physical family.
  • Jesus taught that the light within us must be good and not evil.

Dinner with another Pharisee; Opposition in Full Force

  • As soon as Jesus finished saying those things a Pharisee invited Him to dinner. Jesus didn't wash before the meal, which surprised the Pharisee. Jesus attacked it directly, accusing the Pharisees of:
    • Cleaning the outside of the cup and dish, while the inside is full of greed and wickedness.
    • Being foolish.
    • Giving GOD a tenth of the small things which require significant time to ensure accuracy, while neglecting the weighty matters of justice and love.
    • Loving the most important seats in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplace.
    • Being like unmarked graves, which men walk over without knowing it.
  • A lawyer asked Jesus if accused them too, and He replied that they:
    • Place heavy burdens upon people without lifting a finger to help them.
    • Build tombs for the prophets when it was their forefathers who killed them.
    • Would be held responsible for all the prophets' blood of all generations.
    • Have taken away the key to knowledge, hindering those who were entering.
  • When Jesus left the Pharisee's home, they began to oppose Jesus fiercely and besieged Him with questions, seeking to catch Him in something He might say.

Teaching Thousands

  • After a crowd of thousands had gathered, Jesus spoke openly against the Pharisees because of their hypocrisy. He told them not to be afraid of men who can only kill the body, but rather fear GOD who can kill both body and soul. GOD has not forgotten even the sparrows, much less me.
  • Whomever acknowledges Jesus before men, Jesus will acknowledge him before the angels of GOD. And whomever disowns Jesus before men will be disowned by Him in front of the angels.
  • Again Jesus warned against blaspheming the Holy Spirit, saying that sin will not be forgiven.
  • Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would reveal all things to His followers who were brought before rulers.
  • One asked Jesus to tell his brother to divide the inheritance with him. Jesus replied (paraphrasing), "Be on guard against greed because life does not consist in the abundance of possessions." Then Jesus told the parable of the rich man who had his priorities wrong, built barns for his crops and died that night.
  • Jesus taught His disciples to trust in GOD:
    • Don't worry about your life, what you shall eat.
    • Your body, what you shall wear.
    • GOD feeds the ravens; He'll take care of you.
    • Sell your possessions and give to the poor.
    • Lay up treasure in heaven. Where your treasure is, that's where your heart will be.
  • Then Jesus taught the parable of the watchful servants.
    • Be dressed and ready, keeping your lamps burning, like men waiting on the master to return from the wedding feast.
    • It will be good for those servants that, when the master knocks, they immediately open the door for him.
    • Be watchful -- if the master of the house knew when the thief was coming, he would watch and not allow his home to be broken into.
    • Be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect Him.
  • Peter asked for clarification, and Jesus told them they are the servants that the master left in charge.
  • Jesus didn't come to bring peace on earth but division. He would divide families.
  • Jesus reminded the crowd of the necessity of repentance.

Crippled Woman Healed (on the Sabbath)

  • Jesus went in a synagogue on a Saturday and there was a woman who was crippled by a spirit for 18 years. She was bent over and couldn't stand up straight. Jesus called her over and healed her. She straightened up immediately and praised GOD.
  • Predictably, the synagogue ruler rebuked Jesus, saying that He should not "work" on the Sabbath. He rebuked the people, telling them to seek healing on any day except the Sabbath.
  • Jesus rebuked the hypocrite, telling him that they all lead their donkeys to water on Saturday...why shouldn't this daughter of Abraham be loosed from what bound her? All His opponents were humiliated but the people were delighted with the wonderful things Jesus was doing.
Tim Harris
Author: Tim Harris

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