TruthTexts Luke Study: Chapter 1 Luke Study – Chapter 1

Written and Posted by Timothy Smith

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Luke Chapter One

The Last Chapter of the Old Testament?

Thinking About Chapter One:

The Coming of John the Baptist is announced. Luke 1:5-25

In Luke 16:16, Jesus said, “The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John.” As we read this chapter, it often seems more like it belongs in the Old Testament than the New. The reason is obvious from the statement of Jesus. Until John the Baptist concluded his ministry, God dealt with His people and communicated to His people as He had to Abraham or Samuel or Isaiah. Luke records the events with both drama and sensitivity. When Zechariah goes into the Holy of Holies in the Temple, what happens next is a direct move of God not seen since the last of the prophets, hundreds of years before.

• What did the Angel do to Zechariah? Why?

The Angel Gabriel announces the birth of Jesus to Mary

Nazareth was a small and devout community who had dedicated themselves to studying Scripture and preparing for the coming of the Messiah. Mary was likely more familiar with the prophecies than most people in Galilee and Judea. Yet it’s hard to imagine how shocked and confused Mary must have been to hear the Angel’s announcement, and that it was for her! And her response to the Angel’s words was different than Zechariah’s had been. Notice her honest reaction, and humble acceptance of God’s call.

• Verses 32-33: What are some words and phrases Gabriel uses to describe the Messiah?

• Verse 34: Mary and Zechariah both asked the Angel a question. What makes Mary’s reaction so different?

• Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” (1:38 NRSV) What are some reasons for us to understand and follow God’s Word? What verses from any part of the Bible can help you to practice this principle?

Mary visits Elizabeth and John the Baptist is born

When Mary stepped into the home of Zechariah and Elizabeth, the Holy Spirit moved in a powerful way. The hearts of Elizabeth and Mary are revealed in their reactions. They knew that God’s promised Messiah was actually arriving after millennia of waiting, and that they were witnessing it.

• In Chapter 1 verses 40-45, how does Elizabeth describe what is happening to Mary?

• Describe Mary’s attitude of heart using verses 38 and 46- 49. Should we aim for those qualities in ourselves?

When Elizabeth’s baby is born, Zechariah cooperates fully with God’s plan, and as soon as he does, he regains his voice. Once again, the Holy Spirit moves, and Zechariah prophesies in a beautiful psalm-like message.

• In Zechariah’s prophecy in verses 76-79, what will John the Baptist be called?

• What will be the task of John the Baptist?

(see Isaiah 40:3-5)

Dive Deeper:

Compare Mary’s song of praise to Hannah’s song of praise after Samuel the Prophet was born. See Luke 1:46-55 and I Samuel 2:1-10.

• What parts are similar? What emotions might Mary and Hannah share?

• What parts of Mary’s song show that she knows she will bear the Messiah?


So why is that important to us as believers today?



Chapter 19 verse 10 is widely regarded as the “Key Verse” of the Gospel of Luke.

The Son of Man came to find lost people and save them. (Luke 19:10 NCV)

2. Use Luke’s formal introduction, especially verse 4, and the key verse from chapter 19. Explain why you think Luke wrote his Gospel.


So why is that important to us as believers today?


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More Actions that Apply to Any Chapter:

• Choose a verse, phrase, or section from today’s study that spoke to you, and explain what it means, as if you were talking to a friend.

• Now think of any other verses in any other part of the Bible that reinforce what you learned (or teach a similar lesson). You could use an online Bible and do a word or topic search, if your Bible does not have study notes.

• Now apply what you’ve learned today to your own life. What will you do (start doing, keep doing, stop doing, or change) from reading and thinking about our study today?

• Pray, in your own words, asking God, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to help you remember what you’ve learned, and ask for the power to live more like Jesus.