Introduction to the Gospel of Luke
The Gospel according to Luke illustrates God’s dealings with humanity found in the Old Testament, showing how God’s promises to Israel have been fulfilled in Jesus and how the salvation promised to Israel and accomplished by Jesus has been extended to the Gentiles. The stated purpose is to provide Theophilus and others like him with certainty—assurance—about earlier instruction they have received. To accomplish his purpose, Luke shows that the preaching and teaching of the representatives of the early church are grounded in the preaching and teaching of Jesus, who during his historical ministry prepared his specially chosen followers and commissioned them to be witnesses to his resurrection and to all else that he did. This continuity between the historical ministry of Jesus and the ministry of the apostles is Luke’s way of guaranteeing the fidelity of the Church’s teaching to the teaching of Jesus. Luke’s story of Jesus and the church is dominated by a historical perspective. This history is first of all salvation history. God’s divine plan for human salvation was accomplished during the period of Jesus, who through the events of his life fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies, and this salvation is now extended to all humanity in the period of the church. This salvation history, moreover, is a part of human history. Luke relates the story of Jesus and the church to events in contemporary Palestinian and Roman history for, as Paul says, “this was not done in a corner.” Luke is concerned with presenting Christianity as a legitimate form of worship in the Roman world, a religion that is capable of meeting the spiritual needs of a world empire like that of Rome. To this end, Luke depicts the Roman governor Pilate declaring Jesus innocent of any wrongdoing three times. At the same time Luke argues in Acts that Christianity is the logical development and proper fulfillment of Judaism and is therefore deserving of the same toleration and freedom traditionally accorded Judaism by Rome.
Early Christian tradition, from the late second century on, identifies the author of this gospel and of the Acts of the Apostles as Luke, a Syrian from Antioch. The prologue of the gospel makes it clear that Luke is not part of the first generation of Christian disciples but is himself dependent upon the traditions he received from those who were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word.
Luke, Chapter 1, verse 10-12:
10 Then, when the whole assembly of the people was praying outside at the hour of the incense offering, 11the angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right of the altar of incense. 12Zechariah was troubled by what he saw, and fear came upon him.
Zechariah was troubled, and he was afraid. I do not think this was Holy fear for Zechariah’s faith did not equal his fear and he was filled with unbelief. His intellect outweighed his heart and as a result he was left unable to speak until the birth of his son as the angel told him. That son was John the Baptist. There are times when we must listen to our hearts and not our heads.
Amoris Lætitia The Experiences and Challenges of Families-The Current Reality of the Family-(40-44)
In some countries, many young persons “postpone a wedding for economic reasons, work or study. Some do so for other reasons, such as the influence of ideologies which devalue marriage and family, the desire to avoid the failures of other couples, the fear of something they consider too important and sacred, the social opportunities and economic benefits associated with simply living together, a purely emotional and romantic conception of love, the fear of losing their freedom and independence, and the rejection of something conceived as purely institutional and bureaucratic.” We need to find the right language; arguments and forms of witness that can help us reach the hearts of young people, appealing to their capacity for generosity, commitment, love and even heroism, and in this way inviting them to take up the challenge of marriage with enthusiasm and courage. Indeed, “a narcissistic, unstable or changeable affectivity does not always allow a person to grow to maturity.” Marital problems are “often confronted in haste and without the courage to have patience and reflect, to make sacrifices and to forgive one another. The development of bio-technology has also had a major impact on the birth rate.” Additionally to this are added other factors, such as “industrialization, the sexual revolution, the fear of overpopulation and economic problems. Consumerism may also deter people from having children, simply so they can maintain a certain freedom and life-style.” The Church strongly rejects the forced State intervention in favor of contraception, sterilization and even abortion.” The State has the responsibility to pass laws and create work to ensure the future of young people and help them realize their plan of forming a family.” It should be kept in mind that “the family has the right to decent housing, fitting for family life and commensurate to the number of the members, in a physical environment that provides the basic services for the life of the family and the community.” This makes us see how important it is to insist on the rights of the family and not only those of individuals.
The Transmission of Human Life Is A Most Serious Role
Unlawful Birth Control Methods
· We base Our words on the first principles of a human and Christian doctrine of marriage when We are obliged once more to declare that the direct interruption of the generative process already begun and, above all, all direct abortion, even for therapeutic reasons, are to be absolutely excluded as lawful means of regulating the number of children. Equally to be condemned, as the magisterium of the Church has affirmed on many occasions, is direct sterilization, whether of the man or of the woman, whether permanent or temporary.
· Similarly excluded is any action which either before, at the moment of, or after sexual intercourse, is specifically intended to prevent procreation—whether as an end or as a means.
· Neither is it valid to argue, as a justification for sexual intercourse which is deliberately contraceptive, that a lesser evil is to be preferred to a greater one, or that such intercourse would merge with procreative acts of past and future to form a single entity, and so be qualified by exactly the same moral goodness as these. Though it is true that sometimes it is lawful to tolerate a lesser moral evil in order to avoid a greater evil or in order to promote a greater good," it is never lawful, even for the gravest reasons, to do evil that good may come of it—in other words, to intend directly something which of its very nature contradicts the moral order, and which must therefore be judged unworthy of man, even though the intention is to protect or promote the welfare of an individual, of a family or of society in general. Consequently, it is a serious error to think that a whole married life of otherwise normal relations can justify sexual intercourse which is deliberately contraceptive and so intrinsically wrong.
· Please pray for me and this ministry
· Please Pray for Senator McCain and our country; asking Our Lady of Beauraing to intercede.
 Pope Francis, Encyclical on Love.
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