St Luke 3 Reflections

The Gospel According to St Luke: Luke Chapter Three: Read here:

https://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/luke/3?lang=eng

03 John Baptist

Luke Supplied a List of the Government Leaders: Luke 3:1-2:

Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Cæsar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judæa, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituræa and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene, Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests,’…

John’s Ministry Began: Luke 3:2-9:

…‘the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness.

‘And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.  As it is written in the book of the prophet Esaias; and these are the words, saying,

The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, and make his paths straight.  For behold, and lo, he shall come, as it is written in the book of the prophets, to take away the sins of the world, and to bring salvation unto the heathen nations, to gather together those who are lost, who are of the sheepfold of Israel;  Yea, even the dispersed and afflicted; and also to prepare the way, and make possible the preaching of the gospel unto the Gentiles;  And to be a light unto all who sit in darkness, unto the uttermost parts of the earth; to bring to pass the resurrection from the dead, and to ascend up on high, to dwell on the right hand of the Father, Until the fullness of time, and the law and the testimony shall be sealed, and the keys of the kingdom shall be delivered up again unto the Father;  To administer justice unto all; to come down in judgment upon all, and to convince all the ungodly of their ungodly deeds, which they have committed; and all this in the day that he shall come;  For it is a day of power; yea, every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth;  And all flesh shall see the salvation of God” (vs. 2-6; JST Luke 3:4-11 in italics).

Isaiah prophesied in great detail concerning Jesus Christ and His mission. And He also testified of John the Baptist who would come before Jesus to prepare the way of the Lord.

‘Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him,

“O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 

Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, Abraham is our father; we have kept the commandments of God, and none can inherit the promises but the children of Abraham; for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

“And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire” (vs. 7-9, JST Luke 3:13 in italics).

We should not enter into baptism lightly. There are actions which we must take. John wanted to make this clear to the people, that just because they are descended from Abraham, that won’t save them. It is through faith on the Lord Jesus Christ, repentance, baptism by immersion by one holding the proper priesthood authority, and the laying on of hands for the Gift of the Holy Ghost that we truly become the children of Abraham and the sons and daughters of God, and the recipients of the promises.

John Defines Bringing Forth Good Fruits and Repentance to Proceed Baptism: Luke 3:10-14:

‘And the people asked him, saying,

“What shall we do then?”

‘He answereth and saith unto them,

“He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise.”

‘Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him,

“Master, what shall we do?”

‘And he said unto them,

“Exact no more than that which is appointed you” (vs. 10-13).

For it is well known unto you, Theophilus, that after the manner of the Jews, and according to the custom of their law in receiving money into the treasury, that out of the abundance which was received, was appointed unto the poor, every man his portion;  And after this manner did the publicans also, wherefore John said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you” (JST 3:19-20 in italics).

‘And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying,

“And what shall we do?” And he said unto them,

“Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages” (vs. 14).

James taught us that “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world” (James 1:27).

Alma taught those who were preparing for baptism by the waters of Mormon the qualities that true disciples should possess in Mosiah 18:8-11:

‘And it came to pass that he said unto them:

‘“Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life— Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you?”

‘And now when the people had heard these words, they clapped their hands for joy, and exclaimed:

“This is the desire of our hearts.”

John Declares that He is Not the Christ and Testifies of Christ: Luke 3:15-18:

‘And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not;

‘John answered, saying unto them all,

I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.”

‘And many other things in his exhortation preached he unto the people.’

John Baptized Jesus: Luke 3:21-22:

Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said,

Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.”

Not only did John declare that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of God; Heavenly Father also declared His divine Sonship.

Herod Threw John in Prison: Luke 3:19-20:

‘But Herod the tetrarch, being reproved by him for Herodias his brother Philip’s wife, and for all the evils which Herod had done, Added yet this above all, that he shut up John in prison.’

Jesus’s Ministry Began at Age 30: Luke 3: 23:

‘And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age,

‘being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph.’

Joseph’s Genealogy Set Forth: Luke 3:23-38:

‘And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph,… Which was the son of David,…which was the son of Abraham,…which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God’ (vs. 23, 31, 34, 38). [JST Luke 3:45 states:  ,…which was the son of Adam, who was formed of God, and the first man upon the earth.]

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