Day seventy-three of our cover to cover voyage through the Bible. If you want to see the readings for our trip through the Bible you can follow this link:
Day 73 Readings: Luke 2:1-9:62
Both Luke and Acts are addressed to Theophilus ("Theo-" means God and "-philus" means lover (in a non-erotic sense). So Theophilus means "God-lover" or "lover of God." This may certainly have been someone's name. It may also be a letter addressed to anyone who would be covered by that descriptor. It certainly seems to invite those of us who might be curious to enter into the pages and the stories.
The details of Jesus' life, ministry, death and resurrection in Luke and the beginnings of the early church in Acts are many. Luke was a travelling companion of Paul's and a doctor by trade (the only one to detail the ear being reattached in the arrest scene). His careful chronicling of these formative times are a deep, rich gift to the the community of believers which includes us.
There is similar material between Matthew and Mark. This is not surprisingly as Luke was striving to create and orderly account. Many thing Mark was written first and both Matthew and Luke drew from that primary source. There are also parts that are common to Luke and Matthew but not Mark which have led some to imagine another source (termed "Q" from German word for source "Quelle"). What is certain is that Luke was thorough in trying to communicate the full story of the gospel of Jesus. We would do well to steep ourselves in this rich resource that works so hard to fold us into the greatest story every told.
God, help us live into your story. Thank you for the testimony of Luke and draw us more deeply into being a Theophilus. Amen.