These are study notes on Luke chapters 1-9. They are intended for use by small groups, but could be used for personal study. They are taken from sermons preached by the author, who is the rector at St Helen’s Bishopsgate, London. This is the third in the ‘Read Mark Learn’ series from St Helen’s, preceded by books on John’s Gospel and Romans.
These books are thorough, sound and Christ-centred. Though focused on a particular section of Scripture, they also present an overall view of the Bible. Old Testament connections to what is happening in Jesus’ ministry are brought out as you go through Luke’s Gospel.
The book is intended for small group leaders or anyone ready for a fairly serious study. Readers will come out with a sound basic understanding of Luke and its place in God’s redemptive programme.
Each chapter begins with the author setting the context. He then sets out the structure of a particular section of Luke and explains its Old Testament references. Taylor mentions key themes and shows their application in the first century AD, as well as our own times. He ends by giving the aim of the section. The structure is methodical and well organised.
Taylor avoids any secondary issues and sticks to the main thrusts of each passage. There is a lot of repetition, which, of course, is a good teaching method, although it doesn’t make for exciting reading. There are a few minor interpretive issues, but nothing that mars the overall value of the book. He gives a solid exhortation to serious discipleship; there is no easy-believism here.
A final caveat is that there is a quiet dogmatism to some of the author’s comments about Luke’s intention in writing this or that. He may be right, but offering them more as his considered judgement than certainties would be preferable. On the whole, this is a good book and comes warmly recommended.