Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Story of the Son

Luke has a clear voice as he writes to Most Excellent Theophilus. Phil Moore argues that Luke-Acts is the defence papers for Paul's trial in Rome, arguing that Paul (and the message he preaches) should be accepted not opposed. To prove the case he tells the story of the Son, for Judge Theophilus and for us. Luke writes that:
  • Only the Son knows the Father (10:22).
  • But the Son can make the Father known (10:22).
  • And those who hear him are taught to pray 'Our Father' (11:2)
  • Which is the prayer he prays with joy. (10:21)
  • In the garden in anguish, "Father, if you are willing..." (22:42)
  • And in death... "Father forgive them..." (23:34)
  • And "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit..." (23:46)
  • For his Father introduces him as he is numbered with transgressors.
  • In baptism, "My beloved Son." (3:22)
  • And transfigured "My beloved Son (9:35)
  • And genealogy agrees (3:38)
  • Though the devil raises doubts (4:3,9)
  • And the locals doubt him, "Joseph's son?" (4:22)
  • Yet, the Temple is his Father's house (2:49)
  • And his Father sent him to the vineyard (20:13)
  • And the people killed him to steal his inheritance (20:14) ... though in truth he died to share his inheritance with us!
  • Similarly, the younger son in his most famous parable wished him dead (15:11) for in that story, 'the father' pictures Jesus the Son (The father in the story really is Jesus not his Father. Similarly the woman and shepherd in the related parables are also pictures of Jesus).
  • He is the Son who reveals his Father, to catch us up into his Triune life, to be with him (23:43), welcomed and embraced not as slaves but as sons who share in his inheritance and joy.
  • This is the Son who came like the life-giving sunrise (1:78), whose death saw the sun's light fail (23:45), and who rose victorious with the dawn on the third day (24:1), to shine his life giving beams of forgiveness to all nations (24:47).
  • Jesus is the Son who is the Christ (4:41), the Spirit-anointed (4:18), the Christ of God (9:20).
  • Luke tells us Jesus is the Spirit-anointed Son of the Father... Trinity revealed. Revealed to invite the nations to become Spirit-anointed adopted sons of the Father. Called, by the Father's word through the Psalmist, to the resurrected Son (Acts 2:33), the Son of God of whom Paul spoke (9:20)...
And today? Might we tell of the God who introduces himself in person, inviting us not to a lifestyle or to heaven but into the dynamic life of the divine family through the sending of the Son. A god like any other god we could imagine, but we don't imagine... for we know him only because he has made the first move to introduce himself to us. He ran out to embrace us (15:20), and came out to entreat us (15:28) to join his joyful celebration.

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