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Posted December 9, 2012

Book: The Gospel of Luke: Salvation for all humanity
Author: William A. Anderson
Ligouri, Liguori, Missouri. 2012. pp. 144

An Excerpt from the Introduction:

Reading the bible can be daunting. It's a complex book, and many a person of goodwill has tried to read the Bible and ended up putting it down in utter confusion. It helps to have a companion, and Liguori Catholic Bible study is a solid one. Over the course of this series, you'll learn about biblical messages, themes, personalities, and events and understand how the books of the Bible rose out of the need to address new situations.

. . .Group and Individual Study

The Liguori Catholic Bible Study series is intended for group and individual study and prayer. This series gives you the tools to start a study group. Gathering two or three people in a home or announcing the meeting of a Bible-study group in a parish or community can bring surprising results. Each lesson in this series contains a section to help groups study, reflect, pray, and share biblical reflection. Each lesson also has a second section for individual study.

An Excerpt from the Book:

Just as Zechariah and Mary had received heavenly visitations from the angels of God, shepherds tending their sheep in a field now receive a similar visitation. Because they worked on the Sabbath and grazed their sheep on foreign land, the shepherds were considered outcasts by many of the Jews of Jesus' day. Luke has these outcasts become the heralds of Jesus' birth. The reaction of the shepherds to heavenly visitation of an angel is described in the usual form used by scriptural authors in reporting such events. They react with fear, and the angel must calm their fear. The angel proclaims the joyful news that a savior, who is the Messiah and Lord is born in Bethlehem. The sign given to the shepherds is the condition of lowliness in which Jesus is born, wrapped in bands of cloth and placed in a manger. The event is so great that all of the heavenly hosts join in the praise of God and proclaim that those who find favor with God will experience peace. This peace is a harmony and contentment that comes to those who know they are living in God's presence.

The shepherds, as symbols of the outcasts and sinners whom Jesus will meet during his life, respond as quickly as Mary did when she rushed to visit Elisabeth. They go to Bethlehem “with haste” and find Mary, Joseph, and Baby Jesus. When they see the Holy Family in this situation, they understand the message of the angel. The shepherds spread the word to others, who are equally astonished at their message. Luke tells us that Mary ponders all that is happening and concludes with the shepherds returning to the fields, praising God for all they have heard and seen.

Table of Contents:

Prologue: infancy narrative

Preparation for Jesus' public ministry

Jesus' ministry in Galilee

Jesus teaches and heals

Passion, death and resurrection predicted

Jesus accused of being possessed

God's joy over repentant sinners

Jesus' last days in Jerusalem

Jesus offers his body and blood

Death and resurrection of Jesus