Saturday, September 21, 2013

Called to the lost and not our own home towns

S - Luke 4
And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read. 17 And the [e]book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the [f]book and found the place where it was written,
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor.
He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives,
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set free those who are oppressed,
19 To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.”
20 And He closed the [g]book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your [h]hearing.” 22 And all were [i]speaking well of Him, and wondering at the [j]gracious words which [k]were falling from His lips; and they were saying, “Is this not Joseph’s son?” 23 And He said to them, “No doubt you will quote this proverb to Me, ‘Physician, heal yourself! Whatever we heard was done at Capernaum, do here in your hometown as well.’” 24 And He said, “Truly I say to you, no prophet is welcome in his hometown. 25 But I say to you in truth, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the sky was shut up for three years and six months, when a great famine came over all the land; 26 and yet Elijah was sent to none of them, but only to [l]Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow

O -   I am just enjoying the observation how with such calmness , Jesus reveals himself in person, but also in fullfillment of Isaiah's prophecy.   How interesting that must have been to be in the synagogoue and hear these words.  I can imagine many did not quite understand (as I am sure I would not have) the implications of what Jesus was saying.  He was here to set the captive free (that was them, that was them slaves to sin.)    He describes for those people of his hometown of Nazareth that God does not typically send a prophet to his hometown but somewhere else.   This may have two meanings.  One that He wasn't there for the people of Nazareth but for all of Jerusalem, and Israel.   Second it could mean that he wasn't there for those in Israel who were not seeking God but rather holding on to traditions and authorities , namely the Pharisee's and Sadducee's,  and that he came for those who were not being led by good shepherds.

A -  The application for me is to remember that Jesus came for the lost and misled.  God loves his people but has specific compassion on those who have not be shown the Gospel in a manner that should receive it. Therefore we must always be sure that  we the church,  Christ's body on earth, must always represent God to the lost and under represented, to whom he is calling us to reach.   In many cases that won't be to our hometown, though our hearts are connected to them.

P - Dear Heavenly Father, thank you Lord for today's devotion, and your spirit inspired word.  Thank you for sending your son, to testify to your glory, and reconcile my sin, so that I who was once lost,  could be found and connected to the body of Christ.

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