“It seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.”Luke 1:3-4, emphasis added
That’s how Luke introduces his gospel—as an orderly account written to assure Theophilus that he could believe the truths he had been taught about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
One of the things I find interesting about Luke is that, not only was he a biblical author but also a doctor (Col. 4:14). Doctors operate in a world where facts are not optional—diagnosing and treating a patient is not a matter of subjective emotions and feelings but a matter of objective truth. Before a doctor writes a prescription or makes an incision, he or she better have a good reason for doing it.
That makes Luke’s account of the resurrection all the more compelling. Notice the great pains Luke goes to in order to prove and give evidence of the reality of the resurrected Jesus: the report of the women was believed to be “an idle tale” (v. 11), so Luke corroborates the evidence with the resurrected Jesus appearing to and conversing with a couple of travelers on the road to Emmaus. Those travelers then returned to Jerusalem to also tell the disciples about the resurrected Jesus. As they discussed and processed all of this, the resurrected Jesus himself shows up to show them his wounds (and to ask for a snack, which is understandable—returning from the dead has to make a man hungry).
Luke went beyond simply proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus—he sought to prove it. Luke wanted Theophilus (and us) to know that the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ “for the forgiveness of sins” (v. 47) was not just a first-century feel-good story meant to make bad days a little better. It is a matter of objective truth—and the truth always demands a response.
How will you live in light of the reality of Jesus’ resurrection today?