Luke 10–13

New Testament Teacher Resource Manual, (2002), 85–88


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Introduction

Elder Hans B. Ringger of the Seventy testified: “The foundation and guiding light for all our decisions is the gospel of Jesus Christ and His message to the world. The teachings of Christ must be embedded in our desire to choose the right and in our wish to find happiness. His righteous life must be reflected in our own actions” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1990, 31; or Ensign, May 1990, 25).

In Luke 10–13 the Lord taught people that their lives should reflect righteousness. He helped them see how important it was that their hearts be clean, their motives pure, and their service sincere. The Lord summarized this doctrine in these famous words: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself” (Luke 10:27).

Prayerfully study Luke 10–13 and consider the following principles before preparing your lessons.

Some Important Gospel Principles to Look For

  • If we reject the gospel message or the Lord’s servants, we will incur God’s judgment (see Luke 10:8–16; see also D&C 84:74).

  • As our blessings increase, our righteousness should also increase. Our condemnation will be great if we turn away from God after receiving His blessings (see Luke 12:15–21, 42–48; see also D&C 82:3–10).

  • We are commanded to love and serve those in need, regardless of their race, religion, tribe, or social class (see Luke 10:25–37).

  • We should take advantage of important spiritual opportunities and not be distracted by things of lesser value (see Luke 10:38–42; see also D&C 66:10).

  • Jesus Christ knows the secret acts and thoughts of all people, and He condemns hypocrisy (see Luke 11:37–54; 12:54–57; 13:14–16; see also 2 Nephi 26:29–31).

  • Righteousness is measured by our motives and actions, not by position or status in the Church (see Luke 10:25–37; 11:28, 42–48).

Additional Resources

  • The Life and Teachings of Jesus and His Apostles, 113–15, 117.

Suggestions for Teaching

Choose from the following ideas, or use some of your own, as you prepare lessons for Luke 10–13.

Luke 10:1–37 (see also Matthew 11:20–26). We should love and serve those in need.

(40–45 minutes)

Do one of the following to set up a discussion of the daily opportunities to serve others:

  • Ask students to tell about the last time they noticed someone in need of service and what they did to help.

  • Invite students to share how others have served them recently.

  • Create a situation to give students the opportunity to serve someone. Observe what happens, and discuss the results as a class. (For example, have a student drop his or her books and papers on the ground and try to pick them up.)

Ask:

  • How often do you see someone in need of service?

  • How do you feel when you see others in need?

  • How do you decide when to help others?

Invite students to share an example of a time when someone went out of his or her way to help them. Ask: How did this make you feel?

Have students read Luke 10:1–9looking for the service the seventy rendered. Ask:

  • Why is missionary work an important service?

  • Read verses 17–20. According to these verses, what blessings came to the seventy as a result of their service?

  • Read verses 25–27. Which of the two great commandments have to do with service?

  • Read verse 28. What feelings come to those who serve?

  • Why do you think service is such an important principle of the gospel?

The Savior identified whom we should serve when He gave the parable of the good Samaritan. Read Luke 10:30–33, and then share the following comments by President N. Eldon Tanner, who was a member of the First Presidency:

“Let us examine what really took place here.

“First, the Samaritan ‘had compassion.’ He had the urge to help, for he felt sympathetic to the wounded man’s problem. This kindly affection is brought forth in the heart of anyone who has been touched by the Spirit of the Lord. These empathetic feelings should be felt by each of us toward one another. Indeed, the Savior said that covenant Israel should be known and distinguished by the love they show one for the other. (See John 13:35.)”

Read Luke 10:34, and then continue with President Tanner’s commentary, pausing as desired to discuss the students’ insights and feelings:

“Second, the Samaritan ‘went to him.’ He did not wait to be approached by the one in need, but rather perceived the need and stepped forth without being asked to do so. In that great hymn ‘A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief’ (Hymns, no. 153), so loved by the Prophet Joseph, we sense that the high reward promised by the Savior came not just because acts of kindness were performed, but also because they were done spontaneously, consistently, and selflessly.

“Third, the Samaritan ‘bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine.’ He provided medical attention and refreshed the sufferer’s thirst. This immediate relief may well have saved the man’s life.

“Fourth, the Samaritan ‘set him on his own beast’—that is, he provided transportation and ‘brought him to an inn,’ a place of rest and care. By providing this appropriate accommodation he ensured the proper conditions for healing to take place.

“Fifth, the Samaritan ‘took care of him.’ Notice that during the critical stages of healing, the Samaritan did not turn the care of the wounded man over to others, but sacrificed of his own time and energy to perform this healing service himself. In a time when it is so easy to leave things to someone else, it is important to have so powerful an example as this good Samaritan.”

Read Luke 10:35 then continue with President Tanner’s commentary:

“Sixth, the Samaritan ‘on the morrow … took out two pence, and gave them to the host.’ He took of his own money, not someone else’s, and paid for the services he could not render himself. He thus consecrated of his means for the care of the poor and the needy.

“Seventh, the Samaritan, needing to continue earning his own living, told the innkeeper to ‘take care of him.’ In this way he enlisted others … to help and to continue the care.

“Eighth, the Samaritan then promised that ‘whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.’ Here the ultimate in compassion is shown! He puts no limit on the extent to which he will help. And, perhaps even more significant, he does not drop it there and forget it, but commits himself to return and ensure that all that could be done has been done” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1977, 119–20; or Ensign,Nov. 1977, 91–92).

Finish by reading Luke 10:36–37. Invite students to read “Samaritans” in the (Bible Dictionary (p. 768). Ask:

  • How did the Jews feel toward the Samaritans?

  • How does knowing that add to the power of this parable?

Discuss with students what they could do to be “good Samaritans.” Read the following statement from Bishop H. David Burton, Presiding Bishop of the Church:

“Good Samaritanism is contagious. Providing in the Lord’s way humbles the rich, exalts the poor, and sanctifies both (see D&C 104:15–18). The giver helps those in need by sharing what he has received. … As the receiver rises to his full potential, he then is able to reach out to help others.

“Good Samaritanism starts in the home as parents teach children by example and precept. … May we be generous with our time and liberal in our contributions for the care of those who suffer. May we commit to the principles of Good Samaritanism and be ever mindful of the need to ‘go, and do thou likewise.’” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1997, 106, 108; or Ensign, May 1997, 76).

Conclude by singing “A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief” (Hymns, no. 29). Encourage students to always look for opportunities to serve others.

Luke 10:38–42. We should take advantage of important spiritual opportunities and not allow ourselves to be distracted by things of lesser value.

(10–15 minutes)

Ask students to imagine the Savior coming to their home for a short visit.

  • How would you prepare for Him?

  • What would you most like to do or say during His visit?

  • What would you most want to change before He arrived?

Ask students to read Luke 10:38–42 and compare what Martha and Mary did.

  • What was “that good part” that Mary chose?

  • What can we learn from what Jesus said to Martha?

Read the following statement by Elder Dallin H. Oaks and testify of its truthfulness:

“This scripture reminds every Martha, male and female, that we should not be so occupied with what is routine and temporal that we fail to cherish those opportunities that are unique and spiritual” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1985, 76; or Ensign, Nov. 1985, 61).

Read the following from Elder James E. Talmage:

“There was no reproof of Martha’s desire to provide well; nor any sanction of possible neglect on Mary’s part. We must suppose that Mary had been a willing helper before the Master’s arrival; but now that He had come, she chose to remain with Him. Had she been culpably neglectful of her duty, Jesus would not have commended her course. He desired not well-served meals and material comforts only, but the company of the sisters, and above all their receptive attention to what He had to say. He had more to give them than they could possibly provide for Him. Jesus loved the two sisters and their brother as well. Both these women were devoted to Jesus, and each expressed herself in her own way. Martha was of a practical turn, concerned in material service; she was by nature hospitable and self-denying. Mary, contemplative and more spiritually inclined, showed her devotion through the service of companionship and appreciation” (Jesus the Christ, 433).

Encourage students to live in such a way that the Savior’s Spirit can be with them daily, and to find time each day for prayer, scripture study, and quiet pondering.

Luke 11:1–13 (see also Matthew 6:5–15; 7:7–12). Christ teaches us how to pray.

(15–20 minutes)

Immediately after the opening prayer, ask:

  • Why do we have an opening prayer?

  • Why do we need the things that were prayed for?

  • What should we pray for? What should we not pray for?

  • Read Luke 11:1. Why is the phrase “teach us to pray” important?

  • Read verses 2–4. What did the Savior say was important to pray for?

Consider asking the following questions:

  • What do we ask for that is similar to praying for “daily bread”?

  • How often should we pray for forgiveness?

  • Why is praying to be delivered from temptation vital in the society in which we live?

  • Are there any other elements of prayer you have been taught that are not recorded in these verses?

Ask students to silently read the parables in Luke 11:5–13 (paying attention to the Joseph Smith Translation changes in the footnotes). When they finish, ask them to write down the most important thing they learned as well as one question they have about prayer. Have them hand in what they wrote. Read some of their responses, and answer any of their questions you feel need a response. Encourage students to look to the Lord for answers about how to keep their prayers appropriate and how to make them more meaningful. Share the following from Elder L. Edward Brown, a member of the Seventy:

“My beloved brothers and sisters and friends, I bear earnest and solemn witness to you that the Lord does communicate with us as individuals. Never, never fall victim to the heinous thought that He does not care for you, that He does not know you. That is a satanic lie, one designed to destroy you” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1997, 109; or Ensign, May 1997, 78).

Luke 11:37–54(see also Matthew 23:1–36; Mark 12:38–40). We should understand and avoid hypocrisy.

(20–25 minutes)

Bring two beautifully wrapped boxes to class. Put something clean and beautiful inside one of the boxes (like a fresh flower) and something filthy in the other (like rotten food). Invite a student to choose one of the gifts, and give the other to another student. After they open the gifts, ask:

  • Which is more important, the outside or what is inside?

  • What was deceptive about the filthy gift?

  • How are some people like this?

  • Read Luke 12:1. What word in this verse best describes the filthy gift? (Hypocrisy.)

  • What is the definition of “hypocrite”? (see Bible Dictionary, (“hypocrite,” pp. 705–6).

  • How is a hypocrite different from a person who tries to do right but makes mistakes because of weaknesses?

Give each of your students a slip of paper containing one of the following three scripture references (leave off the accompanying interpretation):

Invite the students to read their assigned verses, consider what they mean, and discuss what they teach about hypocrisy. Write the three interpretations on the board, and have students match their verses with the correct interpretation.

Ask students some of the following questions:

  • How does the Savior feel about hypocrisy?

  • Read the Joseph Smith Translation of Luke 11:52. What important insight does this verse add to our understanding of hypocrisy?

  • What can we do not to be hypocritical in the way we live?

Invite students to silently read Alma 5:15–21, and ask:

  • How could remembering these questions help you not be hypocritical?

  • What blessings come to those who are not hypocrites?

Luke 12–13 (see also Matthew 5:25–26; 6:19–34; 16:1–12; 23:37–39; 24:40–51; Mark 8:10–21; 13:32–37). True discipleship requires a willingness to school our feelings so that our personal desires are the same as the Savior’s desires for us.

(15–20 minutes)

Read the following statements or give them to the students as a handout. Discuss as a class why these four standards are required for discipleship.

Divide students into seven groups. Assign each group one of the following references:

Have the groups look for the answers to the following questions in their assigned references. When they have finished, have each of the groups present their answers to the class.

  • What do these verses teach about being a disciple of Jesus?

  • Why might it be difficult for us to follow this teaching?

  • Who do you know who sets a good example of following these teachings?

  • What blessings do you believe come to disciples who practice these teachings?