Jesus is Rejected at Nazareth

In the spring of 1871, a young man picked up a book and read twenty-one words that had a profound effect on his future. The twenty-one words this medical student read helped him to become the most famous physician of his generation. He organized the world famous John Hopkins Sc … More

Purpose

This portion of Scripture could be titled - “Hometown Boy Returns Home.” The scene is in the synagogue at Nazareth. Visualize our Lord back in His home town in the synagogue where he  had worshiped as a lad (vv. 14-17). The news had spread rapidly about the miracle worker from Nazareth; so His  family and people from the community were anxious to see and hear Him. Jesus was asked to read the Scripture and to give a sermon. He chose Isaiah 61:1-2  as His text and then boldly declares that this was written about Him. Some have referred to this as Jesus’ purpose statement:

  1. Evangelism "to preach the gospel to the poor” (v. 18). - The idea is to bring the good news with a message intended to cheer up the hearer. To the paraplegic Jesus said, “Be of good cheer, your sins are forgiven” (Matt. 9:2).
  2. Encouragement "to heal the broken hearted” (v. 18). He is the only one who can work on the inside where the broken heart beats and make people whole again.
  3. Edification "to preach deliverance to the captives and restore sight to the blind” (v. 18). Once a person is evangelized and encouraged they need to be edified or built up.
  4. Equipped "to set at liberty them that are bruised” (v. 18). The basic piece of equipment for liberty is assurance for forgiveness and the fact that we have been pardoned.
  5. Exaltation "To preach the acceptable year of the Lord” (v. 19). The crowd was fascinated at His teaching as every eye was fastened on Him (v. 20). Jesus’ words plainly stated that “Today this Scripture is being fulfilled in your hearing” (v. 21).

Application

The cross of Christ needs to be lifted up. My testimony and praise of what Christ has done for me can be a convincing tool for reaching the lost.

Luke 4:14-21 (English Standard Version)

And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and a report about him went out through all the surrounding country. And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all. And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."

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