Thought for the Day – 18 October – Feast of St Luke the Evangelist
“Our Beloved Physician” – Bringer of Light
Luke wrote as a Gentile for Gentile Christians. His Gospel and Acts of the Apostles reveal his expertise in classic Greek style, as well as his knowledge of Jewish sources. There is a warmth to Luke’s writing that sets it apart from that of the other synoptic Gospels and yet, it beautifully complements those works. The treasure of the Scriptures is a true gift of the Holy Spirit to the Church.
Luke wrote one of the major portions of the New Testament, a two-volume work comprising the third Gospel and Acts of the Apostles. In the two books, he shows the parallel between the life of Christ and that of the Church. He is the only Gentile Christian among the Gospel writers. Tradition holds him to be a native of Antioch and Paul calls him “our beloved physician (Col 4:14).” His Gospel was probably written between 70 and 85.
Luke appears in Acts, during Paul’s second journey, remains at Philippi for several years, until Paul returns from his third journey, accompanies Paul to Jerusalem and remains near him when he is imprisoned in Caesarea. During these two years, Luke had time to seek information and interview persons, who had known Jesus. He accompanied Paul on the dangerous journey to Rome where he was a faithful companion.
Luke’s unique character may best be seen by the emphases of his Gospel, which has been given a number of subtitles:
1) The Gospel of Mercy
2) The Gospel of Universal Salvation
3) The Gospel of the Poor
4) The Gospel of Absolute Renunciation
5) The Gospel of Prayer and the Holy Spirit
6) The Gospel of Joy