Luke 1:3
Parallel Verses
New International Version
With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,

New Living Translation
Having carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to write a careful account for you, most honorable Theophilus,

English Standard Version
it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,

New American Standard Bible
it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it out for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus;

King James Bible
It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,

Holman Christian Standard Bible
It also seemed good to me, since I have carefully investigated everything from the very first, to write to you in an orderly sequence, most honorable Theophilus,

International Standard Version
I, too, have carefully investigated everything from the beginning and have decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,

NET Bible
So it seemed good to me as well, because I have followed all things carefully from the beginning, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
He appeared also to me because I had approached all things carefully, that I would write everything in order to you, excellent Theophila.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I, too, have followed everything closely from the beginning. So I thought it would be a good idea to write an orderly account for Your Excellency, Theophilus.

Jubilee Bible 2000
it seemed good also to me, after having understood all the things from the beginning with great diligence, to write them unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,

King James 2000 Bible
It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto you in order, most excellent Theophilus,

American King James Version
It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you in order, most excellent Theophilus,

American Standard Version
it seemed good to me also, having traced the course of all things accurately from the first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus;

Douay-Rheims Bible
It seemed good to me also, having diligently attained to all things from the beginning, to write to thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,

Darby Bible Translation
it has seemed good to *me* also, accurately acquainted from the origin with all things, to write to thee with method, most excellent Theophilus,

English Revised Version
it seemed good to me also, having traced the course of all things accurately from the first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus;

Webster's Bible Translation
It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,

Weymouth New Testament
it has seemed right to me also, after careful investigation of the facts from their commencement, to write for you, most noble Theophilus, a connected account,

World English Bible
it seemed good to me also, having traced the course of all things accurately from the first, to write to you in order, most excellent Theophilus;

Young's Literal Translation
it seemed good also to me, having followed from the first after all things exactly, to write to thee in order, most noble Theophilus,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

1:1-4. Luke will not write of things about which Christians may safely differ from one another, and hesitate within themselves; but the things which are, and ought to be surely believed. The doctrine of Christ is what the wisest and best of men have ventured their souls upon with confidence and satisfaction. And the great events whereon our hopes depend, have been recorded by those who were from the beginning eye-witnesses and ministers of the word, and who were perfected in their understanding of them through Divine inspiration.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 3. - Having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first; more accurately rendered, having followed up (or, investigated) step by step all things from their source. St. Luke, without depreciating the accounts of the life and work of Jesus then current in the Church, here sets out his reasons for undertaking a fresh compilation. His Gospel would differ from the early Gospels:

(1) By going back much further than they did. It is doubtful if these primitive Gospels began earlier than with the ministry of John and the baptism of Jesus. St. Mark's Gospel - which, perhaps, represents one of the earliest forms of the apostles' preaching and teaching, - does not go further back than those events. St. Luke gave Theophilus, among other early details, a history of the incarnation and the infancy of the Blessed One.

(2) By presenting the whole story in a consecutive form. Hitherto, apparently, "apostolic tradition probably had a more or less fragmentary character; the apostles not relating every time the whole of the facts, but only those which best answered to the circumstances in which they were preaching. This is expressly said of St. Peter, on the testimony of Papias, or of the old presbyter on whom he relied: Πρὸς τὰς χρείας ἐποιε1FC0;ιτο τὰς διδασκαλίας ('He chose each time the facts appropriate to the needs of his hearers'). Important omissions would easily result from this mode of telling the great story" (Godet). Most excellent Theophilus. The term rendered "most excellent" (κράτιστε) denotes that the friend of Luke for whom nominally his Gospel was written was a man of high rank in the Roman world of that day. Nothing is known of his history. He was most likely, from Luke's connection with Antioch, a noble of that great and wealthy city, and may fairly be taken as a representative of that cultured thoughtful class for whom in a measure St. Luke especially wrote. The title κράτιστε, by which the Theophilus is here addressed, we find several times applied to high Roman officials, such as Felix and Festus (Acts 23:26; Acts 24:3; Acts 26:25).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

It seemed good to me also,.... Being moved to it by the Holy Ghost; for he did not undertake this work of himself, merely by the motion of his own will, but was influenced, and directed to it by the Spirit of God, as well as by him assisted in it:

having had perfect understanding of all things; relating to the subject of this Gospel, concerning the conception, birth, ministry, baptism, and death of John the Baptist; concerning the conception, birth, private and public life of Christ, together with his sufferings, death, resurrection, and ascension. The Syriac and Persic versions refer the word "all" to persons, to the eyewitnesses and ministers of the word; rendering the clause thus, "who have been studiously near to them all": and both senses may be taken in, and the meaning be, that Luke had diligently sought after, and had attained unto a perfect knowledge of all the affairs of Christ; having studiously got into the company of, and intimately conversed with all, or as many as he could, who had seen Christ in the flesh; and were, from the very first of his ministry, attendants on him, that he might have the most certain and exquisite account of things, that could be come at:

from the very first; and to the last; from the conception of John, the forerunner of the Messiah, which is higher than any other evangelist goes, to the ascension of Christ; though some choose to render the word here used, "from above", as it may be, and sometimes is; and may signify, that the evangelist had his perfect knowledge of things by a revelation from above, by divine inspiration; and this moved him to write, and which he mentions, that Theophilus, to whom he writes, and every other reader, may depend, with certainty, on what is said in it. This clause is omitted in the Syriac, Arabic, and Persic versions, but is in all copies, and by all means to be retained: this being the case, these reasons prevailed upon him, as he says,

to write unto thee, in order, most excellent Theophilus; which regards not so much the order of time, which he does not always strictly observe, as the particulars of things, related in order, and with great exactness: who this Theophilus was, to whom he writes his Gospel, cannot be said; by his title, which is such as was given to governors of provinces, as to Felix and Festus, Acts 23:26, he seems to be, or to have been, a civil magistrate in some high office; for though not many rich, and mighty, yet some have been, and are, called by grace. Theophylact (k) says, he was of the order of the senators, and perhaps a nobleman, or prince: however, this name was not a general name, for every "lover of God", as the word signifies, as Salvian (l) thought; but the name of a particular man, who believed in Christ, and was an acquaintance of Luke's; though Epiphanius (m) makes a doubt of it which it should be,

(k) Ut supra. (Epiphan. contra Haeres. l. 2. Haeres. 51. Theophylact. in Argument in Luc.) (l) Salonio Epiat. p. 237. (m) Ut supra. ((m))

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

3. from the very first—that is, from the very earliest events; referring to those precious details of the birth and early life, not only of our Lord, but of His forerunner, which we owe to Luke alone.

in order—or "consecutively"—in contrast, probably, with the disjointed productions to which he had referred. But this must not be pressed too far; for, on comparing it with the other Gospels, we see that in some particulars the strict chronological order is not observed in this Gospel.

most excellent—or "most noble"—a title of rank applied by this same writer twice to Felix and once to Festus (Ac 22:26; 24:3; 26:25). It is likely, therefore, that "Theophilus" was chief magistrate of some city in Greece or Asia Minor [Webster and Wilkinson].

Luke 1:3 Additional Commentaries
Context
Dedication to Theophilus
2just as they were handed down to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word, 3it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it out for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus; 4so that you may know the exact truth about the things you have been taught.
Cross References
Proverbs 22:21
teaching you to be honest and to speak the truth, so that you bring back truthful reports to those you serve?

Acts 1:1
In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach

Acts 11:4
Starting from the beginning, Peter told them the whole story:

Acts 18:23
After spending some time in Antioch, Paul set out from there and traveled from place to place throughout the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.

Acts 23:26
Claudius Lysias, To His Excellency, Governor Felix: Greetings.

Acts 24:3
Everywhere and in every way, most excellent Felix, we acknowledge this with profound gratitude.

Acts 26:25
"I am not insane, most excellent Festus," Paul replied. "What I am saying is true and reasonable.

1 Timothy 4:6
If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed.
Treasury of Scripture

It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you in order, most excellent Theophilus,

seemed.

Acts 15:19,25,28 Why my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the …

1 Corinthians 7:40 But she is happier if she so abide, after my judgment: and I think …

1 Corinthians 16:12 As touching our brother Apollos, I greatly desired him to come to …

in.

Luke 1:1 For as much as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration …

Psalm 40:5 Many, O LORD my God, are your wonderful works which you have done, …

Psalm 50:21 These things have you done, and I kept silence; you thought that …

Ecclesiastes 12:9 And moreover, because the preacher was wise, he still taught the …

Acts 11:4 But Peter rehearsed the matter from the beginning, and expounded …

most.

Acts 1:1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus …

Acts 23:26 Claudius Lysias to the most excellent governor Felix sends greeting.

Acts 24:3 We accept it always, and in all places, most noble Felix, with all thankfulness.

Acts 26:25 But he said, I am not mad, most noble Festus; but speak forth the …

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Alphabetical: account also an as beginning carefully consecutive everything excellent fitting for from good have having I in investigated it me most myself order orderly out seemed since the Theophilus Therefore to well write you

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