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  • Eric Marshburn

April 2024

… He steadfastly and determinedly set His face to go to Jerusalem.” Luke 9:51 AMPC

 

During Holy Week, we remember how Luke framed the story of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection in a three-act-play:

 

Act 1 – Jesus In Galilee.Act 2 – Jesus On His Way To Jerusalem (Chapters 9:51-19:44).Act 3 – The Final Days …

 

The hinge verse connecting Act 1 to Act 2 includes the words, “he set his face towards Jerusalem.” The interesting thing, according to Luke, is that Jesus didn’t do this (set his face toward Jerusalem) in Galilee. He did so in Samaria. It goes without saying that Luke (the physician) is the only one of the four gospel writers who isn’t Jewish. This Gentile convert reminds us that Jesus had no intention of his mission being limited only to the Jews. This caused E. Stanley Jones to declare that “a gospel that is not for ALL people is not for any people.”

 

This pivotal verse in Luke’s Gospel points toward Jesus’ passion like a neon sign. Modern translators of this passage phrase the pivot in similar ways:

 

“he resolved to go to Jerusalem.” J. B. Phillips

 

“… he gathered up his courage and steeled himself for the journey to Jerusalem.” Luke 9:51   Eugene Peterson

 

Further, these words from Claudia Hernaman’s hymn illuminate a similar stream of consciousness:

 

And through these days of penitence,and through thy passion-tide,Yea, evermore in life and death,Jesus, with us abide…

 

Luke reminds us that LIFE IN CHRIST is a journey into which we are still being called. We are called to continue with fellow pilgrims and invite others (all) to join us as we journey with Jesus. Following Jesus will mean squarely setting our faces – with Jesus – towards our mission. Only through the power of the Spirit can we do so. IN that POWER, we continue… steadfastly and determinedly.

 

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death – even death on a cross. Philippians 2:5-8 NRSV

 

Still Traveling in ONE Peace …

Pastor Eric

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