The call to discipleship as an invitation to align ourselves with Jesus

I think that discipleship is more profound and down-to-earth than we think. If we believe that we are followers of Jesus, we must take discipleship seriously.

Here are some quotes regarding Luke’s view of discipleship from Joel B. Green’s The Gospel of Luke. NICNT. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1997. They are excellent!

For Luke, then, the call to discipleship is fundamentally an invitation for persons to align themselves with Jesus, and thus with God. (p. 23)

Genuine “children of Abraham” are those who embody in their lives the beneficence of God, and who express openhanded mercy to others, especially toward those in need. (p. 23)

Jesus thus calls on people to live as he lives, in contradistinction to the agonistic, competitive form of life marked by conventional notions of honor and status typical of the larger Roman world. Behaviors that grow out of service in the kingdom of God take a different turn: Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Extend hospitality to those who cannot reciprocate. Give without expectation for return. Such practices are possible only for those whose dispositions, whose convictions and commitments, have been reshaped by transformative encounter with the goodness of God. Within the Third Gospel, the chief competitor for this focus stems from Money–not so much money itself, but the rule of Money, manifest in the derive for social praise and, so, in forms of life designed to keep those with power and privilege segregated from those of low status, the lest, the lost, and the left-out. (p. 24)

Joel Green on “salvation” in Luke

I just read this excellent summary of Luke’s view of salvation in Joel B. Green’s The Gospel of Luke. NICNT. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1997. Take a look!

Salvation is neither ethereal nor merely future, but embraces life in the present, restoring the integrity of human life, revitalizing human communities, setting the cosmos in order, and commissioning the community of God’s people to put God’s grace into practice among themselves and toward ever-widening circles of others. Their Third Evangelist [i.e. the author of Luke’s Gospel] knows nothing of such dichotomies as those sometimes drawn between social and spiritual or individual and communal. Salvation embraces the totality of embodied life, including its social, economic, and political concerns. For Luke, the God of Israel is the Great Benefactor whose redemptive purpose is manifest in the career of Jesus, whose message is that this benefaction enables and inspires new ways for living in the world. (pp. 24–25)