This study examines the use of the term "sinner" in Luke-Acts. There is at present no scholarly consensus on the identity of the "sinner" in the Synoptic Gospels. Although the term is important in the Gospel of Luke, few works target the role of the sinner in it. Even fewer address the curious absence of "sinner" in Acts.
Luke's narrative of Jesus's mission to "sinners," together with the comments about Gentiles in the Gospel, prepare readers for the mission to Gentiles in Acts. Luke provides a link for readers by demonstrating how a Jewish religious sect made up of fishermen, toll-collectors, and "sinners," who claimed to have found the Messiah, became a religion with a wide Gentile following. In his use of the term "sinner," Luke suggests that "repentant Jewish sinners" and "repentant Gentile followers" of Jesus represent a fulfillment of God's promise of universal salvation.
Endorsements & Reviews-
"The Sinner in Luke is an important study of a key Lucan theme. When Jesus proclaims release for the sinners as a core element of his message, it is crucial to understand who the sinner is, whether he be a tax collector or a religious leader--or even us. Dwayne Adams's study shows the moral-relational base that is central to the term in the face of other claims about this term's meaning and role in Luke. If one understands this category, one can appreciate Jesus's mission better. The result is a study well worth reading." --Darrell L. Bock, Dallas Theological Seminary
Dwayne H. Adams
Dwayne H. Adams is Associate Professor of Bible at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids, Michigan.