Luke- Week 8- Day 4

And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth. And they said, Is not this Joseph’s son?  (23)  And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.  (24)  And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.  (25)  But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land;  (26)  But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow.  (27)  And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Elise us the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian.  (28)  And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath,  (29)  And rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong.

Luke 4:22-29

Explanation:

The Messiah’s Rejection

They must have been wondering, “Is he claiming what I think He is claiming?”.   We know they were wondering something like this because of what it says in verse 22.

(22)  And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth. And they said, Is not this Joseph’s son?  

Luke 4:22

There was a tendency to doubt.  There was a tendency to disregard.  And the reason seems to be that they were too familiar with Jesus.  They thought they knew His identity, and that it was not the Messiah.

“And they said, Is not this Joseph’s son?”

Their conception of a Messiah that was coming to conquer Rome, release the captives, and bring sight to the blind did not include those that were poor themselves.  It didn’t include the possibility that someone that they knew, from their hometown, the son of a carpenter.

(23)  And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.  

Jesus perceived that these folks wanted to see Jesus do and say some of the things that he had done in the surrounding areas here in His hometown.  I believe what Jesus is alluding to is their tendency to dismiss what He was claiming.  They were taking an “I’ll believe it when I see it” position. It’s as if they were saying, “I’ve heard claims about you.  I’m hearing your claims now.  Prove yourself.”  Notice Jesus said “whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum” not “whatsoever you have done in Capernaum”.   They did not believe. 

How else do I know they didn’t believe:

Mark 6:3-6 gives other details of the same experience:

Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.  (4)  But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.  (5)  And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them.  (6)  And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages, teaching. 

Mark 6:3-6

Here is Luke’s expression of this:

(24)  And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.  

He was warning that they were in danger of not believing his claims even if He did give them a sign.  Why?  Notice the next couple of two verses where Jesus gives two parallel statements about the ministry of the prophets:

(25)  But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land;  (26)  But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow.  

(27)  And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian.  

In verse 25 you many widows and in verse 26 you have many lepers.

In verse 25 you have Elijah and in verse 27 you have Elisha.

In verse 25 you have the gentile widow responding in faith and being provided for by the ministry of Elijah, and in verse 27 you have a gentile soldier Naaman demonstrating faith and being healed by God through the ministry of Elisha.

What point was Jesus making?  God is willing to heal, and save, and set free everyone that believes, not just the Jews.  His plan was never just to be the God of the Jews, but of everyone that believes.

This is not in keeping with what these people believed about Jesus.  This is not in keeping with what these people believed about the Messiah.  Look how they responded:

For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.  (12)  For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.  (13)  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Romans 10:11-13 

Notice the level of rejection they exhibited.

(28)  And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath,  (29)  And rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong.  

It wasn’t enough to just reject the message and leave.  They rejected the message and wanted to kill Him.  They believed that they were justified and righteous to do so.  The message that they were poor, and blind, and sick and captive was not palatable.  They thought they were ok.  And they thought that this claim to be God was blasphemous.

This is not a surprise for those who truly understand what the scripture says about the Messiah.

For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.  (3)  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Isaiah 53:2-3

He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.  (11)  He came unto his own, and his own received him not.  (12)  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:  (13)  Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 

John 1:10-13

Application:

God is not concerned with your heritage when it comes to whether or not your are right with Him.  He is concerned with your faith.  Without faith it is impossible to please God.  Life is the chance to acknowledge Jesus Christ as Messiah and Savior and repent of our sins.  There is nothing more dangerous than rejecting the claims of Jesus Christ as Messiah, Savior and Lord.

Response:

How are you disregarding Jesus identity today?

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