Acts 16:10 After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.
This is a very momentous verse in Acts, because it is the first time Luke uses the 1st person plural pronoun, “we.” In other words, it was at this point that Luke joined Paul in his ministry. Luke steadfastly declines to write about himself, focusing rather on what God did, especially through Paul. Many scholars have noted that Luke was a very careful, precise writer, which seems appropriate when he was a doctor. (Colossians 4:14) (In a side note, it is interesting that it was long thought Luke used the wrong title for Galio in Acts 18:12, but several years ago archaeologists found a cornerstone in Corinth with Galio’s name and exactly the title Luke used.) Luke didn’t want to use his own name as he wrote, but he wanted to make it clear when he was a direct participant/observer in what was going on. That attitude helps us understand why Paul called him “beloved” (the NIV just says, “dear friend”). We don’t know if he was a believer before he met up with Paul in Troas, but at the very least his faith was very strong, causing him to go through real hardship and danger as he traveled with Paul, apparently for the rest of his life. We have no idea what happened to him after they arrived in Rome in Acts 28, other than the fact that he used the time while Paul was in prison to write Acts. (The Gospel that bears his name was quite possibly written while Paul was in prison in Caesarea.) He was clearly, even extremely, aware of the Person and work of the Holy Spirit. We owe him a great deal, because Acts ties together the earthly ministry of Jesus and the letters that make up the rest of the New Testament. Our theology and even our faith would have gaping holes without what Luke was faithful to record as God directed.
In all honesty I’ve never really thought that much about Luke, though I’ve known all the facts I just mentioned. The Lord has given me a gift for words as well, though I certainly haven’t used it as powerfully as Luke did. I have started on a memoir, but haven’t worked on it in many months. I need to get back to that, so that others may have reason to praise God for His faithfulness to me and to those around me. I need to be as careful with the facts as Luke was, not inflating anything and doing all I can to keep the focus on God. He has been incredibly gracious to me, and He deserves all the glory.
Father, I certainly didn’t expect this when I sat down to read and pray this morning! Help me be faithful with all that You have placed in me, just as Luke was, so that all of Your purposes for me may be fulfilled, on Your schedule and for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!