Today’s text is Luke 1:1-7. Luke sets out to write an “orderly account”. Perhaps, unlike the opening of John’s Gospel which we read yesterday, this is a more obvious start. We start slightly before the birth of Jesus, with the story of John the Baptist – seen as a prophet who not only foretold the coming of the saviour, as many had before him, but who actually met his saviour.
Luke goes on, in later verses and chapters, to tell us so much of the human side of Jesus’s birth and upbringing – that the other Gospels perhaps don’t dwell on. So we get the answers to the questions everyone asks about an unusual grown up they meet – how did they get that way – from both the mystical side (the angel Gabriel’s arrival) – and the human (a boy growing up in a carpenter’s house).
Maggi reminds of this – far more eloquently than I can – and that this intensely human story is exactly the sort of ‘human interest’ story that sells newspapers and magazines. And has sold the book which has not only sold more copies than any other, but also was the first “best seller” of the printed book world. A story about God, and about a man. A story about God made man. Not for Luke the mysticism of John – “and the Word became flesh and lived among us” – but how that actually came to be.
Maranatha – come, Lord Jesus.