Three conditions plague us individually and socially--the compulsion to be successful, to be powerful, and to be right. Jesus faced these demons in the wilderness, and they tempt us as well. When used selfishly or for personal gain, success, power, and ideology can weaken and corrupt. However, when applied humbly and compassionately, they can be useful, even transformative.
Central to the Christian Scriptures are the stories of Jesus and his disciples, and no account is more inspiring than that told by an anonymous author we call Luke. His Gospel, aptly described as "the most beautiful book in the world," and its sequel, the book of Acts, narrate the history of Jesus and early Christianity. These books, known by scholars as Luke-Acts, constitute over one quarter of the New Testament. Together they reveal what success, power, and truth look like spiritually, from God's perspective.
Because Luke does not "do theology" in a vacuum, that is, for the sake of theology alone, questions of Luke's purpose in composing his two-volume work impact Christianity's relationship to the secular world, particularly issues of peace, equality, and social justice. In fact, social and political categories may be as important for understanding Luke as traditional theological ones.
While exploring fascinating perspectives on Luke as historian, literary artist, and theologian, Power Revealed approaches Luke-Acts exegetically, expositing the biblical text for practical, pastoral, and spiritual needs. Useful for individual or group study, each chapter contains aids to learning, including (a) chapter summaries or outlines, (b) homework assignments, and (c) learning objectives.