“When they heard this, everyone in the synagogue was enraged. They got up, drove Him out of town, and brought Him to the end of the hill that their town was built on, intending to hurl Him over the cliff.” (Luke 4:28-29)
Think your way through this.
Jesus went to His hometown of Nazareth, His disciples with Him. His brothers and sisters were there, along with his mother, Mary. We don’t know whether Joseph was still alive, but many assume he had died by this time. Jesus had at least four brothers who were named in the New Testament and two sisters. No doubt Jesus had numerous aunts, uncles and cousins there in Nazareth. Both Joseph’s and Mary’s families resided there. Childhood friends Jesus grew up with were there, and then there were the elders and the rabbis.
On the Sabbath Jesus was invited to read from Isaiah and speak. The men of the synagogue were all amazed at His speaking ability, at the graciousness of His words. They were with Him – until two things occurred: 1) they realized that this was the son of Joseph the carpenter, and 2) Jesus spoke positively about Gentiles and negatively toward the Jews. That so enraged them that they intended to execute Him (a portent of what was to come), but Jesus escaped from them miraculously.
Now, imagine the hurt of this rejection. These were people Jesus had grown up respecting and loving. This was His community, His home on earth. His family members lived among them. For these folks to take these actions had to have struck deep into the heart of Jesus.
We are not told the extent of the hurt He endured, but what we are told is that this was not a deterrent to His ministry and His direction. Jesus bore His pain, but was undeterred.
Following Jesus and carrying out the will of God calls for the commitment of a disciple, one who is willing to pay the price that comes with walking with the Lord.
Lord, Help us to understand that there is a cost to discipleship, and help us to be willing to pay that cost as we follow You. Amen.