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105. Duty, faith and gratitude (Luke 17:1-19)
Whether in relation to money (as illustrated in the previous stories) or any other matter likely to cause temptation, Jesus’ followers must not cause young believers to sin (Luke 17:1-2). They must try to correct those who do wrong to them, but at the same time forgive them, no matter how many times the offence is repeated (Luke 17:3-4). Concerning faith, they should remember that God is not concerned with how much they have, but with whether they have truly placed it in him (Luke 17:5-6).
Those who serve Jesus should not feel proud of themselves, as if their master has an obligation to give them a special reward. Their good works are their duty, and no matter how hard they work, they still owe God more (Luke 17:7-10).
Many become so used to receiving God’s blessings that they forget to thank him in return. Others, who have not previously known God, may display true gratitude the first time they become aware of God’s goodness to them. This was demonstrated on an occasion when Jesus healed ten lepers. He then sent them to the priest as the Jewish law required, but none of the Jews in the group returned to give him thanks. The only one who thanked him was a foreigner (Luke 17:11-19).
106. Coming of the kingdom (Luke 17:20-37)
The Pharisees were looking for visible signs so that they could work out when the Messiah’s kingdom would begin. Jesus told them that since he was the Messiah and was living among them, the Messiah’s kingdom had already begun (Luke 17:20-21; cf. Matthew 16:1-4).
Turning to his disciples, Jesus added that one day he would be taken from them. In their longing for him to return they were not to be led astray by rumours and false prophecies. His coming would be visible and unmistakable (Luke 17:22-25).
As in the days of Noah and of Lot, people will be carrying out their everyday duties when the divine judgment will suddenly fall (Luke 17:26-30). It will then be too late for people to do anything to save themselves. There will be an irreversible separation between those who have lived for themselves and those who have put God’s interests first (Luke 17:31-36). God’s great intervention in human affairs will affect people worldwide. Wherever there is sin, there the divine judgment will fall (Luke 17:37).
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Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on Luke 17". "Fleming's Bridgeway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Third Sunday after Epiphany