Person Of The Week: Luke

Luke is a key figure in Paul’s life, and he is the author of two New Testament books: the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles. But he remains something of a background figure, only indirectly referring to his activities in Acts with an occasional “we” instead of “they.”

For example, the first “we” occurs in Acts 16:10, where Paul, Silas and Timothy are now joined by the author of the book in the city of Troas. We know nothing about Luke’s conversion, purpose of being in Troas or circumstances of meeting up with the group of preachers.

We do know Luke was a Gentile and a physician (Col. 4:11, 14). We know that Luke had an intense interest in correctly documenting the life of Christ (Luke 1:1-4). We know that Luke had great courage and was a loyal fellow-servant with Paul. When Paul undertook the voyage to Rome for his trial, Luke’s “us” and “we” place him beside the apostle through shipwreck, stranding on Malta and eventual arrival in Rome.

Did Luke sacrifice his medical practice to travel as an apostolic servant? That we do not know. But we know he was willing to endure rigorous travel, risk his life and accept difficult assignments (he stayed behind in Philippi to help ground the new church – Acts 16:40). May we all be of such a selfless spirit.