Luke 1:1-4 (KJV)
Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us,
Even as they delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word;
It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,
That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed.
A fellow thought he was being smart with me the other day and asked, “What are the only two books of the Bible not written by a Jew?” I assumed by his countenance it was a trick question and didn’t respond. He answered, “Luke and Acts because Luke was a Gentile.”
Ok. I had never heard that. I did a bit of digging and discovered that it is not possible to tell whether he was Jew or Gentile. He was from Syria, I believe, but that does not preclude him being Jewish. Paul was from Tarsus, a Roman city. Paul was by birth Roman but by blood a Jew. It is possible and even likely the same was true of Luke.
Paul took heat for hanging around Gentiles. He counseled Timothy to be circumcised because as only half Jew, he had not been. Circumcision would remove at least that obstacle from his ministry. When he went into the temple the Jews worked themselves into a frenzy because they assumed he had taken Titus, a Gentile, into the temple with him. But Luke, who penned the accounts of both Timothy and Titus, mentions no such trouble on his account.
Was Luke a Jew or a Gentile? The Bible does not tell us. It is most likely, I believe, that he was a Jew.
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Luke 1:1-4 Jew or Gentile?
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