Thursday 21 June, 2012
23 Jesus said to them, “Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician, heal yourself!’ And you will tell me, ‘Do here in your hometown what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.’” 24 “Truly I tell you,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in his hometown. 25 I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. 26 Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. 27 And there were many in Israel with leprosy[a] in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian.” 28 All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. 29 They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. 30 But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.
Today’s bible story is about Jesus’ work in Nazareth.
In Nazareth people were amazed at the gracious words that came out from Jesus and said: “Is this not Joseph’s son?”
Jesus challenged their attitude because He knew what was in their minds?
No matter what Jesus had done in Capernaum, Nazareth’s people were unwilling to accept His words because of His low identity – “the son of Joseph” (similarly Nathanael said: Can any good thing come out of Nazareth? John1:46)
But, Jesus still preached the gospel first to His own town; even though He knew “no prophet is accepted in his own country”
Also, Jesus warned them that if Nazareth/Jewish people did not accept Him, God’s salvation would go to the Gentiles who are originally unrelated to God – like Elijah was sent only to a widow in Zarephath in Sidon and Elisha cleansed only the Naaman the Syrian.
Today, how do I see/identify other people in Church? By their outside or inside?
How do I see/treat God’s warning in my life? How do I respond to the voice of the Holy Spirit that has spoken to me?
Written by Allen Leu
I love the way that Jesus shatters the expectations
of his audience in the Galilean synagogue, but the reaction of the audience is quite shocking.
It makes me ponder: how do I respond in situations where my “doctrine” is challenged? If I am honest, I probably lean towards becoming defensive, which others may perceive as being self righteous. For me this verse really calls me not to put God in a box and not place expectations on him that I’m not happy for him to break.
Its interesting to note that Jesus still preached the gospel to his own town even though many would not accept him or his teachings. He did it because among the many who dismissed him were some that would believe and be transformed. I’m encouraged as we face a similar situation today. There will always be some that believe. Thanks for the reminder Allen.