Luke 4:13-21 (NRSV)
Verse 13When the devil had finished every test, he departed from him until an opportune time.
Verse 14Then Jesus, filled with the power of the Spirit, returned to Galilee, and a report about him spread through all the surrounding country. Verse 15He began to teach in their synagogues and was praised by everyone. Verse 16When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, Verse 17and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written: Verse 18"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, Verse 19to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." Verse 20And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Verse 21Then he began to say to them, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."
In a special way in Luke’s gospel story the Spirit regularly leads, fills, and empowers Jesus. It was the spirit that had led Jesus into the wilderness to be tested. In our gospel reading for today we are told that Jesus returned from the wilderness “in the power of the Spirit.” Now the spirit leads Jesus into teaching, preaching, and healing.
Jesus said to his hearers, “Today this scripture is fulfilled,” as if to say the Spirit also continues to empower, lead, and fill us to carry on the ministry of Christ. How will you today trust the Spirit to lead you in living out the gospel? Is there someone that God is encouraging you to reach out and call or encourage? Do you sense the tugging at your heart to help a neighbor? The Spirit began a work in you when you were baptized. The Spirit continues to send us out to make a difference. Today and every day go out in joy knowing the Spirit sends you forth.
Come, Holy Spirit, fill us and kindle in us a heart of compassion for those in need. As you send us out today may we bring good news to the poor and bring healing to those in need. Amen.