Luke 9 Training the Apostles
Summary

This chapter is filled with miracles interspersed with lessons from the Savior. It begins with Jesus sending out His disciples on their own to preach and heal in the cities of Galilee. When they returned to Jesus, a multitude of about 5000 persons heard Him preach. At the end of the day, Jesus miraculously fed all those people by multiplying five loaves and two fish. Following that, Peter affirmed that Jesus is the Christ of God and Jesus predicted His death and resurrection. That confession was proven when Jesus was transfigured before three apostles and God announced that Jesus is His beloved Son. There follows the healing of a boy and Jesus lessons on humility and the cost of discipleship.

Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles

9And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, 2and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. 3And he said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not have two tunics.[1] 4And whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart. 5And wherever they do not receive you, when you leave that town shake off the dust from your feet as a testimony against them.” 6And they departed and went through the villages, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.

Question 1

Why would Jesus tell the disciples not to take anything with them when they go out to preach and heal?

Herod Is Perplexed by Jesus

7Now Herod the tetrarch heard about all that was happening, and he was perplexed, because it was said by some that John had been raised from the dead, 8by some that Elijah had appeared, and by others that one of the prophets of old had risen. 9Herod said, “John I beheaded, but who is this about whom I hear such things?” And he sought to see him.

Question 2

How was Jesus perceived by Herod? By the disciples? By God?

Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

10On their return the apostles told him all that they had done. And he took them and withdrew apart to a town called Bethsaida. 11When the crowds learned it, they followed him, and he welcomed them and spoke to them of the kingdom of God and cured those who had need of healing. 12Now the day began to wear away, and the twelve came and said to him, “Send the crowd away to go into the surrounding villages and countryside to find lodging and get provisions, for we are here in a desolate place.” 13But he said to them, “You give them something to eat.” They said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish—unless we are to go and buy food for all these people.” 14For there were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, “Have them sit down in groups of about fifty each.” 15And they did so, and had them all sit down. 16And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing over them. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd. 17And they all ate and were satisfied. And what was left over was picked up, twelve baskets of broken pieces.

Peter Confesses Jesus as the Christ

18Now it happened that as he was praying alone, the disciples were with him. And he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” 19And they answered, “John the Baptist. But others say, Elijah, and others, that one of the prophets of old has risen.” 20Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” And Peter answered, “The Christ of God.”

Jesus Foretells His Death

21And he strictly charged and commanded them to tell this to no one, 22saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”

Take Up Your Cross and Follow Jesus

23And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself? 26For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27But I tell you truly, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God.”

The Transfiguration

28Now about eight days after these sayings he took with him Peter and John and James and went up on the mountain to pray. 29And as he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became dazzling white. 30And behold, two men were talking with him, Moses and Elijah, 31who appeared in glory and spoke of his departure,[2] which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. 32Now Peter and those who were with him were heavy with sleep, but when they became fully awake they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. 33And as the men were parting from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here. Let us make three tents, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah”—not knowing what he said. 34As he was saying these things, a cloud came and overshadowed them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. 35And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, my Chosen One;[3] listen to him!” 36And when the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and told no one in those days anything of what they had seen.

Question 3

When Jesus’ appearance was changed, how did Jesus respond to the suggestion of Peter?

Jesus Heals a Boy with an Unclean Spirit

37On the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, a great crowd met him. 38And behold, a man from the crowd cried out, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, for he is my only child. 39And behold, a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly cries out. It convulses him so that he foams at the mouth, and shatters him, and will hardly leave him. 40And I begged your disciples to cast it out, but they could not.” 41Jesus answered, “O faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here.” 42While he was coming, the demon threw him to the ground and convulsed him. But Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit and healed the boy, and gave him back to his father. 43And all were astonished at the majesty of God.

Jesus Again Foretells His Death

But while they were all marveling at everything he was doing, Jesus[4] said to his disciples, 44“Let these words sink into your ears: The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men.” 45But they did not understand this saying, and it was concealed from them, so that they might not perceive it. And they were afraid to ask him about this saying.

Question 4

Who is greatest in God’s kingdom?

Who Is the Greatest?

46An argument arose among them as to which of them was the greatest. 47But Jesus, knowing the reasoning of their hearts, took a child and put him by his side 48and said to them, “Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me. For he who is least among you all is the one who is great.”

Anyone Not Against Us Is For Us

49John answered, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he does not follow with us.” 50But Jesus said to him, “Do not stop him, for the one who is not against you is for you.”

A Samaritan Village Rejects Jesus

51When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. 52And he sent messengers ahead of him, who went and entered a village of the Samaritans, to make preparations for him. 53But the people did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem. 54And when his disciples James and John saw it, they said, “Lord, do you want us to tell fire to come down from heaven and consume them?”[5] 55But he turned and rebuked them.[6] 56And they went on to another village.

The Cost of Following Jesus

57As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 59To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 60And Jesus[7] said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61Yet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 62Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

Question 5

What excuses were given for not following Jesus immediately?

People
  • Twelve apostles
  • Sent to preach and heal

  • Herod
  • This is Herod Antipas

  • Peter, James and John
  • At Jesus’ transfiguration

  • Moses and Elijah
  • Appeared at transfiguration

  • A man whose son was possessed by a demon
  • James and John offer ot command fire to consume
Places
  • Jerusalem
  • Zacharias served in Jerusalem in the temple

  • Villages of Galilee
  • Jesus sent apostles to preach

  • A deserted place near Bethsaida(10)
  • Transfiguration at Mt. Tabor or Mt. Hermon
  • A village of the Samaritans
  • On the road toward Jerusalem (57)

Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles

9And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, 2and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. 3And he said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not have two tunics.[1] 4And whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart. 5And wherever they do not receive you, when you leave that town shake off the dust from your feet as a testimony against them.” 6And they departed and went through the villages, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.

Luke 9:3

The disciples were not to take provisions with them; they depended on those who received them.


Luke 9:5

This instruction is expanded upon in Mark.

Mark 10:15-41

Herod Is Perplexed by Jesus

7Now Herod the tetrarch heard about all that was happening, and he was perplexed, because it was said by some that John had been raised from the dead, 8by some that Elijah had appeared, and by others that one of the prophets of old had risen. 9Herod said, “John I beheaded, but who is this about whom I hear such things?” And he sought to see him.

Luke 9:5

This Herod Antipas had already killed John the Baptist (see v. 9 and Mark 6)

Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

10On their return the apostles told him all that they had done. And he took them and withdrew apart to a town called Bethsaida. 11When the crowds learned it, they followed him, and he welcomed them and spoke to them of the kingdom of God and cured those who had need of healing. 12Now the day began to wear away, and the twelve came and said to him, “Send the crowd away to go into the surrounding villages and countryside to find lodging and get provisions, for we are here in a desolate place.” 13But he said to them, “You give them something to eat.” They said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish—unless we are to go and buy food for all these people.” 14For there were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, “Have them sit down in groups of about fifty each.” 15And they did so, and had them all sit down. 16And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing over them. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd. 17And they all ate and were satisfied. And what was left over was picked up, twelve baskets of broken pieces.

Luke 9:14

There were about 5000 males “besides women and children”. See:

Matthew 14:21

They were divided into groups of fifty making the distribution of the food orderly, less confusing.

Peter Confesses Jesus as the Christ

18Now it happened that as he was praying alone, the disciples were with him. And he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” 19And they answered, “John the Baptist. But others say, Elijah, and others, that one of the prophets of old has risen.” 20Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” And Peter answered, “The Christ of God.”

Luke 9:18

This section (18-36) answers the questions: “Who do men say I am?” “Who do you say I am?” and “Who does God say I am?”

Jesus Foretells His Death

21And he strictly charged and commanded them to tell this to no one, 22saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”

Take Up Your Cross and Follow Jesus

23And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself? 26For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27But I tell you truly, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God.”

Luke 9:23

To take up our cross is to make whatever sacrifice is necessary to be faithful to and follow Jesus.


Luke 9:27

Jesus is not here talking about the end of the world because some would not die until they would see the kingdom of God.

The Transfiguration

28Now about eight days after these sayings he took with him Peter and John and James and went up on the mountain to pray. 29And as he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became dazzling white. 30And behold, two men were talking with him, Moses and Elijah, 31who appeared in glory and spoke of his departure,[2] which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. 32Now Peter and those who were with him were heavy with sleep, but when they became fully awake they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. 33And as the men were parting from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here. Let us make three tents, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah”—not knowing what he said. 34As he was saying these things, a cloud came and overshadowed them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. 35And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, my Chosen One;[3] listen to him!” 36And when the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and told no one in those days anything of what they had seen.

Luke 9:30

Moses seems to be associated with the giving of the Law (called the Law of Moses).

Elijah seems to represent the prophets and to be associated with the prophecies of old.


Luke 9:31

They spoke of Jesus’ decease (exodus) at Jerusalem. Moses and Elijah both had unique experiences at the end of their days on earth (Deuteronomy 34; 2 Kings 1). So would Jesus.


Luke 9:33

A tabernacle dedicated to someone was a place where that person would be honored.


Luke 9:35

When God says “hear Him,” He is indicating they would no longer hear Moses or Elijah, but instead they would hear His Son. See:

Deuteronomy 18:15; Acts 3:22-25; Hebrews 1:1-3

Jesus Heals a Boy with an Unclean Spirit

37On the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, a great crowd met him. 38And behold, a man from the crowd cried out, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, for he is my only child. 39And behold, a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly cries out. It convulses him so that he foams at the mouth, and shatters him, and will hardly leave him. 40And I begged your disciples to cast it out, but they could not.” 41Jesus answered, “O faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here.” 42While he was coming, the demon threw him to the ground and convulsed him. But Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit and healed the boy, and gave him back to his father. 43And all were astonished at the majesty of God.

Jesus Again Foretells His Death

But while they were all marveling at everything he was doing, Jesus[4] said to his disciples, 44“Let these words sink into your ears: The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men.” 45But they did not understand this saying, and it was concealed from them, so that they might not perceive it. And they were afraid to ask him about this saying.

Who Is the Greatest?

46An argument arose among them as to which of them was the greatest. 47But Jesus, knowing the reasoning of their hearts, took a child and put him by his side 48and said to them, “Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me. For he who is least among you all is the one who is great.”

Anyone Not Against Us Is For Us

49John answered, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he does not follow with us.” 50But Jesus said to him, “Do not stop him, for the one who is not against you is for you.”

Luke 9:50

This story is reminiscent of a wilderness story involving Moses and Joshua. See:

Numbers 11:26-29

A Samaritan Village Rejects Jesus

51When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. 52And he sent messengers ahead of him, who went and entered a village of the Samaritans, to make preparations for him. 53But the people did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem. 54And when his disciples James and John saw it, they said, “Lord, do you want us to tell fire to come down from heaven and consume them?”[5] 55But he turned and rebuked them.[6] 56And they went on to another village.

Luke 9:51

Jesus moved from Galilee toward Jerusalem for the larger part of His ministry.


Luke 9:55

Jesus rebuked James and John for their spirit and vengeful attitude.

The Cost of Following Jesus

57As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 59To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 60And Jesus[7] said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61Yet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 62Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

Perspectives

Jesus is truly the Son of God and His word should be followed and not previous pronouncements.

Jesus says a man must “deny himself.” More than just denying something to himself, Jesus wants us to deny “self” as our master and accept Jesus as our Master.

We should not let anything come before our spiritual commitment and our duty to God.