Deliberate Discipleship: Outreach to Outcasts

The Rise of Opposition: Four Controversies – Part 1 (Luke 5:27-32) Doubtless Living

The Rise of Opposition: Four Controversies – Part 1 (Luke 5:27-32)

Jesus’ early ministry in Galilee, especially his work in Capernaum, was already drawing lots of attention.  After being rejected in his home town of Nazareth, Jesus began to teach in the surrounding synagogues.  His teaching had authority and power and His message was magnetic.  The crowds began to swell as word began to spread beyond the region about this man who claimed to be the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy.

Perhaps the thing that attracted the most attention was that Jesus’ ministry went beyond just words and proclamation, He demonstrated great compassion on the people and ministered God’s grace both physically and spiritually.  He cast out unclean spirits, healed paralytics, touched and cleansed a leper, and boldly proclaimed sins were forgiven. 

Word about Him spread to Jerusalem and scribes and Pharisees began to follow Him, but with different intent.  Their curiosity soon gave way to doubt as they took exception to His methods and questioned His motives.  Jesus had faced down opposition from Satan directly in the desert, now he was beginning to see opposition arise from men.  Over the next few weeks, we will look at four controversies that arose during Jesus’ early work in Capernaum and the surrounding area.

In this week’s study, we’ll examine Luke 5:27-32 to see that Jesus didn’t flinch at upsetting tradition.  His primary concern was the spiritual condition of those He met.  Jesus sought out and intentionally associated with the outcasts of society as part of His mission.  He saw the outcasts as an opportunity for God to show His grace and love.

This passage exposes the deeply personal character of Jesus’ mission and challenges us to be more like Him!  It challenges us to be deliberate in our discipleship efforts to seek out and minister to those who have been neglected and ignored by others.  As Jesus taught us in this passage and many others, association with outcasts is part of outreach, isolation from sinners is not the call of the disciple.

Download link: The Rise of Opposition: Four Controversies – Part 1

See Doubtless Living: The Gospel of Luke for more information on this Bible study series.