Date: Sunday, February 14, 2021
The book called Luke in the Bible, was written by a Gentile believer named Luke, who was a close associate of the Apostle Paul. He set out to carefully investigate the truth concerning Jesus Christ, using the eyewitness accounts of those who were with and knew Jesus and His ministry. His intent in writing this Gospel was so that his readers would know the truth regarding Jesus and what they have been taught concerning Him. It is our hope in studying this Gospel, that we too would better understand the truth concerning Jesus, so that we may better know Him and make Him known to others.
And He looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury. And He saw a poor widow putting in two small copper coins. And He said, “Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all of them; for they all out of their surplus put into the offering; but she out of her poverty put in all that she had to live on.” (Luke 21:1-4)
The above verses are part of the passage of Scripture we examine together at for the message in this Sunday's worship service. As we observe Jesus’ commendation of the poor widow, it is important to note the context in which this was recorded by Luke. Jesus had just uttered woe after woe upon His proud and hypocritical foes and spoke to His disciples of dreadful events yet to come —the overthrow of the Jewish people, the destruction of the Temple, and startling phenomena that would usher in His Second Coming. Between His words of condemnation of the scribes and the amazing revelation He makes to His disciples, comes this very personal commendation of a deed of self-sacrifice and love, done by a poor and obscure worshipper as she humbly gave her offering in the house of God. While the disciples were wondering at the majestic towers and carved stone-work as a great offering dedicated by man to God, Jesus had seen in the gift of the poor widow an offering equally great in the eye of Heaven. The amazing thing is that God sees all of us very clearly and personally, and knows all about us!
David summed up this truth in Psalm 139:17-18 when he wrote: How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You.
I am thankful to God that by His grace we do not have any poor widows in our midst, but we do have many elderly widows in our church family. And I am truly grateful that three of them are celebrating their birthdays this month. They are a wonderful reminder to us of God's loving care of these sisters in the Lord, and I want for them and for us to be encouraged in knowing that God's loving gaze is upon all of us.
This Sunday's message title is "Jesus Exposes the Religious Leaders' Hypocrisy." The alternative title is "Condemnation and Commendation," and we looktogether at Luke 20:41-21:4.