12. You Can Please God Today


The gospel of Jesus brought is grace; the power to become a son of God.

Sirach 15:15, John 17,

Jesus and His Message Rejected at Nazareth (Part 1)

HEARING that John had been cast into prison, Jesus returned to Galilee. He began to preach the gospel of God in the synagogues, saying:

           “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent ye, and believe the gospel.”

           His fame was spread through all the regions round about.

           Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had been reared, and went to the synagogue on the Sabbath, as was his custom. He stood up and read from the book of the prophet Isaiah, were it was written:

           “’The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised; to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.’”

           All eyes fastened on him as he began to preach, saying:

           “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.”

           Many of those present were bewildered, and others were awe-inspired. They questioned among themselves.

           “Is this Joseph’s son?”

           Others hearing him were astonished. They said:

           “From whence hath this man these things? And what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Judas, and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?

           And they were offended at him.

           Jesus continued, saying:

           “Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, ‘Physician, heal thyself. Whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.’ But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elijah, when then Heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land. But unto none of them was Elijah sent, save unto Sarepta, a city Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow. And many the lepers were in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian.”     

           When they had heard these things, those in the synagogue were filled with resentment. They rose up in a body to thrust Jesus out of the temple and city. They intended to cast him headlong from the top of a hill, but Jesus passed through the midst of the crowd and went his way. (According to Matthew and Mark, the visit to Nazareth occurs later in Jesus’ career and the crowd is not so violent as here depicted by Luke.) 

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