A few years ago, I returned to my hometown to do a wedding for a cousin. It was the first time that some of my relatives had seen me in a pastoral role. Some of my aunts remarked that they could not believe that Wade was doing a wedding. To them, I was still a young child. It was difficult for them to see me any other way.
In this week’s text, we journey with Jesus to his hometown. Word of his miracles and teaching have made him famous; everyone is talking about him. He shows up in the local synagogue for worship. They give him an opportunity to read the Scripture. Jesus selects a reading from the Isaiah scroll. Jesus is not interested in increasing his popularity; he is more concerned that everyone know his mission. Look at what he reads,
(Luke 4:16-19 ESV) 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.
It is one thing to read a scripture. It is another to interpret it. Jesus then takes the posture of a teacher (by sitting down). Everyone is listening to him; they are eager to hear what he has to say about this passage. What he says next is extremely bold.
(Luke 4:20-21 ESV) 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.
Join us on Sunday as we explore Jesus’ words to his hometown. How will they handle such an audacious claim? What did he mean with this statement? I look forward to exploring this with you.
Note: We had a wonderful trip to Green Lake, Wisconsin this past week. While the weather was cold, the youth enjoyed time in worship and fellowship with other. Thank you for your prayers and support for our teens.