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The Scriptorium

The Promise of the Father

It all comes down to Jesus. Luke 24.44-53

Luke 24 (6)

Pray Psalm 47.1, 2.
Oh, clap your hands, all you peoples!
Shout to God with the voice of triumph!
For the LORD Most High is awesome;
He is a great King over all the earth.

Sing Psalm 47.1, 2.
(Truro: Shout, for the Blessed Jesus Reigns)
O clap your hands, you peoples all, with joy to God your songs intone!
Shout out to Him, and on Him call, He is the mighty, sovereign One!

Read Luke 24.1-53; meditate on verses 44-53.


1. What did Jesus do for the disciples?

2. What did He promise to send?

Luke’s gospel ends with the ascension of Jesus (vv. 51, 52). More transpired before that, however, and Luke will “back and fill” a bit in Acts 1. Jesus ascended to heaven, received the Kingdom of God (Dan. 7.13, 14), took His seat at the Father’s right hand (Ps. 110.1), and together (Acts 2) they poured out the gift of the Holy Spirit, the great promise of God (Lk. 24.49).

Jesus opened the minds of His disciples to understand the Word of God so that they could see how it all points to Him (vv. 44, 45). We must pray daily that the Lord would so open our minds. But it will do us no good to pray this unless we also come to the Scriptures daily, seeking Jesus and His will for us.

Jesus commissioned the disciples to be “witnesses” of His resurrection and to proclaim the Good News of repentance and remission of sins “to all nations” (cf. Acts 1.8). What He appointed and taught them to do, He also teaches us (Matt. 28.18-20). God has given us the promise of His Holy Spirit to teach us the things of Christ (Jn. 14.26), transform us into the likeness of Jesus (2 Cor. 3.12-18), bear holy spiritual fruit in us and furnish us with gifts for ministry (Gal. 5.22, 23; 1 Cor. 12.4-11), empower us to be witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 1.8), and use us in building His Church (Eph. 2.19-22).

The Spirit of God thus embodies all the promises of God and aims them all at our knowing, loving, and serving the Lord Jesus (2 Cor 1.20). We can know that we have received and are enjoying the promise of the Father when we see the “distinguishing marks of a work of the Spirit of God” (Edwards) lively and increasing in us.

Treasures Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
“‘You are My witnesses,’ says the LORD, and My servant whom I have chosen,
that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I AM He.
Before Me there was no God formed, nor shall there be after Me.
I, even I, AM the LORD, and besides Me there is no savior.
I have declared and saved, I have proclaimed, and there is no foreign god among you;
therefore you are My witnesses,’ says the LORD, ‘that I AM God.
Indeed before the day was, I AM He; and there is no one who can
deliver out of My hand; I work, and who will reverse it?’” (Is. 43.10-13)

“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven
given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4.12).

“I AM the way, the truth, and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through Me” (Jn. 14.6).

All had to be fulfilled in the Body of Jesus that was written about Him in the Law of Moses, in the Prophets, and in the Psalms. And just as foretold, it was fulfilled. As Jesus said, “Thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day” (Lk. 24.47). This, however, was not the end of what He said. He finished by saying, “Repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations…” (Lk. 24.47).

Jesus’ life, suffering, death, and resurrection were not a blanket panacea for all that ails the world, without the world accepting the gift, unwrapping it, and appreciatively using it for His glory. A tsunami of cosmic blessing does not automatically inundate everyone with forgiveness, life, and joy in His Kingdom. We must repent of our wickedness, as our wickedness was what Jesus’ Perfect Life had to atone for. And then we must turn away from our sin and turn to His Law as guidance. We must be in His Word daily, for strength to pick up our own cross and follow Him. We must take to heart Jesus’ words:
“If you love Me, keep My commandments” (Ex. 20.1-17; Matt. 22.37-40; Jn. 14.15). And
“You are My friends if you do whatever I command you” (Jn. 15.14). And
“Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us” (1 Jn. 3.24).

But how will we ever remember all of this?
How will we have this always in our minds and hearts?
By reading His Word daily (Heb. 4.12) and letting His word permeate our entire being (Prov. 8.32-36).
And by praying (1 Thess.5.17, 18). Communicate with the Savior of your soul. He is always ready to listen.
This One who suffered and died for us, wants us to know Him. And surely, if He gave His life for us, He is more than interested in what we do with His gift.

Wouldn’t you want to know what someone had done with a gift of yours?

Do not let His death for you be in vain.

Living for Jesus who died in my place, bearing on Calv’ry my sin and disgrace;
Such love constrains me to answer His call, follow His leading and give Him my all.

O Jesus, Lord and Savior, I give myself to Thee,

For Thou in Thine atonement, didst give Thyself for me;
I own no other Master, my heart shall be Thy throne;
My life I give, henceforth to live, O Christ, for Thee alone.
(Thomas O. Chisholm, 1917)

For reflection
1. What is the Good News? How would you explain it to someone in your Personal Mission Field?

2. What can you do to improve the time you spend seeking Jesus in His Word?

3. What believers can you encourage today in being witnesses for our Lord?

We ought, therefore, to acknowledge that we come short in every respect, so that the heavenly doctrine proves to be useful and efficacious to us, only so far as the Spirit both forms our minds to understand it, and our hearts to submit to its yoke; and, therefore, that in order to our being properly qualified for becoming his disciples, we must lay aside all confidence in our own abilities, and seek light from heaven; and, abandoning the foolish opinion of free-will, must give ourselves up to be governed by God.
John Calvin (1509-1564), Commentary on Luke 24.45

Pray Psalm 47.2-9.
Give praise to Jesus, our ascended and exalted King and Lord! Pray for the coming of His Kingdom in and through you.

Sing Psalm 47.2-9.
(Truro: Shout, for the Blessed Jesus Reigns)
High is the Lord, O, fear His Name! He rules, a King o’er all the earth.
Nations and peoples He has tamed, The heritage of His holy worth.

God has ascended with a shout, the Lord with sound of trumpet bold!
Sing praise to Him, let praise ring out! Let praise through all the world be told!

God is the King of all the earth; sing praise to Him with glorious psalms!
He rules the nations by His worth, and on His throne receives their alms.

Princes of peoples gather all to Abraham and to our God.
Exalt the Lord, and on Him call—the earth is His, so praise our God!

T. M. and Susie Moore

You can download all the studies in our Luke series by clicking here.

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Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. For sources of all quotations, see the weekly PDF of this study. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006), available by clicking here.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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