Third Sunday after Epiphany

Pastor's Summary of Luke 4:14-21

Luke has been tempted by the devil in the wilderness to misuse his power for his personal benefit, for worldly domination, and for protection from God's plan fulfilled on the cross. Now he returns to Galilee. Jesus customarily attends synagogue services to worship and present his message; it is there that Luke tells us who Jesus is: he stands in continuity with God's promises of old. Jesus is a great teacher; he has great authority in telling about God and his plan. Jesus begins with one part of the scroll (Isaiah 61), then rewinds to another: vv. 18-19 emphasize his mission to those who are "poor" in any way, be it financially, in spirit, in health. In "the year of the Lord's favor", the jubilee year, debts were forgiven and slaves were set free. Jesus applies these verses to himself: and performs the works of the Messiah then expected. He then sits to interpret the teachings: he says that God's plan is now being completed ("fulfilled") v. 21).