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Wednesday July 11 – No prophet is acceptable in his hometown

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 Isaiah was given to Him… – Luke 4:16-17

Scripture reading: Luke 4:16-30

Jesus had been working, preaching and healing for some time already when He appears on the Sabbath in the synagogue of His native town of Nazareth. Luke places this event right after the account of the temptations of Jesus and following a few verses in which he sums up Jesus’ first work and glorious reception elsewhere. In this way, Luke, the storyteller, increases our suspense as we wonder about His reception in His hometown. So far He had manifested Himself in His victory over Satan, in His work of redemption from sin and sickness. These and other events signal the beginning of the Year of Jubilee! That’s what He reads about now in the synagogue of Nazareth.

Although the people of Nazareth appreciated His preaching, they were more eager to see His miracles. The Lord Jesus, however, knew their thoughts and negative sentiments, their reservations about this son of Joseph, the carpenter. His preaching was not received with faith in the hearers; rather, they were waiting for the miracles of their town’s magician. They were not interested in redemption from poverty, slavery, oppression by Satan, or any of the promises that would be fulfilled in the Year of Jubilee. They refused to see Him as the Messiah, the Saviour who would deliver them from sin and Satan, from sin and death! The Lord Jesus exposed them in their unbelief and foretold that this gospel of redemption would be believed in the world! Nazareth rejected it and so the light was extinguished there, but He will be the Light of the world!

Suggestions for prayer 

Ask God for a believing heart, for the enlightening of our mind, and for a response of faith to the hearing of His Word.

This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Rev. William den Hollander (Sr.) is minister-emeritus of the Bethel Canadian Reformed Church of Toronto.

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