< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: A Prophet in His Own Town

Sunday, October 09, 2011

A Prophet in His Own Town

Pastor Kurt came back to the Gospel of Mark in his sermon today:

Mark 6:1-6 1 Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples. 2 When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed. “Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? 3 Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.

4 Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town, among his relatives and in his own home.” 5 He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. 6 He was amazed at their lack of faith.

Then Jesus went around teaching from village to village.

This text asks us, “Do you miss Jesus or do you get Him?”

Jesus went to Nazareth, His hometown. Nazareth was very small; only about 300 people lived there. And it was off the beaten path. Jesus went back there during His three year ministry one other time and it didn’t go well. That was in Luke 4:15–30 when He was preaching in the Synagogue on the Isaiah passage that said “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” And then said “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

The crowd was so angry then that they were going to stone Him. But He escaped and now several months or maybe even a year later He comes back. Jesus is merciful and compassionate. He was giving them another chance. Jesus pursues sinners!

The people were astonished at His teaching, His ministry and His life. Astonished in a shocked, doubtful way. They saw who He was: Son of Mary, brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon, but they wanted to know who taught Him. In those days Rabbis learned from other Rabbis. But Jesus learned from God Himself.

They could see He had authority, but attacked Him because He hadn’t gotten it from another Rabbi, that He acted like it came from Himself. They acknowledged His wisdom, but weren’t listening to the message.

Then they questioned His miracles: His power. By this time He had healed the woman who had been losing blood for 12 years and also brought the young girl back to life. And they would have heard about that, but they assumed His power came from demons. They said it was obviously not from God because “we know this kid!” He’s “just a carpenter!” They also called Him the son of Mary not Joseph pointing out their belief He was even illegitimate.

Two of His brothers; James and Jude ended up writing books in the New Testament, but even they didn’t believe who He was until He was resurrected.
Jesus does have power. He does have authority and He does do great miracles. Don’t look at Jesus as a man and miss that He is God! They took offense to Him when they should have been bowing the knee and submitting to Him. Worshipping Him!

People who deny Jesus really just don’t want a Lord over them.

In verse 4 Jesus says He is looking for honor. In verses 5 and 6 He says He wants our trust. For us to depend on Him instead of ourselves. He wants us to believe in Him!

Jesus wasn’t unable to do miracles there; He was just disinclined because of their lack of belief. He wouldn’t do physical healing because He was dishonored by their lack of faith. Again, He is more interested in our spiritual teaching then our physical healing.

The last sentence in this section is “He went on teaching.” He moved on from Nazareth. He went on to someone who would listen. This was their second chance.

And it was the last time He went to Nazareth.

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