Getting Personal

OPENING PRAYER

Jesus, move in my heart so that I would clearly see who You are and put my whole trust in You.

 

Read:LUKE 4:22-30

[22] All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” they asked. [23] Jesus said to them, “Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician, heal yourself!’ And you will tell me, ‘Do here in your hometown what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.'” [24] “Truly I tell you,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in his hometown. [25] I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. [26] Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. [27] And there were many in Israel with leprosy in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed-only Naaman the Syrian.” [28] All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. [29] They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. [30] But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.

 

Reflect:WHAT MADE THE PEOPLE CHANGE THEIR VIEW OF JESUS?

People can be so fickle! At the start of this passage we read that “All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips” (22). But only a few short verses later, we are told that “all the people… were furious when they heard this” (28). What on earth could have happened to make them change so dramatically?Have you ever been patronized by people who watched you grow up, but don’t seem to realize that you have actually grown up? Jesus is encountering something like that here, in his home synagogue in Nazareth. Instead of grasping the significance of Jesus’ words, they’re nudging one another and saying, “Look–it’s Joseph’s boy… Can you believe it?!” (22). So Jesus gives it to them straight. He tells them he’s a prophet (24) and even compares himself to Elijah (25-27). He compares his listeners to the Israelites of Elijah’s day who received neither the prophet nor his message. It’s not surprising that his hearers get upset (28). It’s easy to approve Jesus’ beautiful expressions of hope. It’s far less comfortable when he addresses us personally and expects a response.

 

APPLY

Which aspects of Jesus’ teaching make you uncomfortable? Talk honestly with God about them.

 

CLOSING PRAYER

Tender Father, help me find the place of safety under the shelter of Your wings.

 

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