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Lesson # Luke 4:23-28
Study Material - Luke 4:23-28
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
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 home town as well.'' 24 And He said, 'Truly I say to you, no prophet is welcome in his home town. 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 Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27 'And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.' 28 And all in the synagogue were filled with rage as they heard these things;
Everyone is sitting around, perhaps glancing silently at each other. Expecting Jesus to do something miraculous as they had heard He had done in Capernaum. The circus has come to town and they expected a show. "Show us! Prove to us that you can do the things people say you can do.'
Jesus declined to give them a show, but instead told them straight out what they were thinking. And that was two things. First, heal thyself, and second, do miracles.
Jesus was the son of a carpenter. If he were God, surely He could fix His own financial difficulties. He could create a magnificent home and estate for Himself and His family. He could propel Himself to a high rank within the present government. But Jesus was not a genie, nor did He come to earth to create wealth for himself.
As for the miracles? They had heard the talk for many months, and expected to see miracles or something to make it worth their time for attending this synagogue. After all they probably had better things to do with their time. Right? But this promised to be a really good show. And as far as that goes, why not invite Jesus to set up His headquarters here. After all this was His home town. It would be good for the town. The advertising could read, 'Come to Nazareth to cure your ills!' Kind of catchy. Don't you think?
But as for a prophet? Well Jesus was just the son of a carpenter, you know. Just a nice kid with a talent.
And so their thinking went on and on. Ignoring the true reason for Jesus' visit there. Which was to show them the true fulfillment of scripture. To teach them that they needed to change their attitude, repent, change their minds regarding God and scripture. To give them the gospel, 'Believe on the Son of God and be saved.'
And so the ,oral of this story. Elijah and Elisha both had messages for the people of Israel, but they were negative. So God sent them both to foreigners who were positive. Elisha even went to a foreigner who was an enemy of Israel. These stories are in 1 Kings 17-18, and 2 Kings 7 respectively.
Where a prophet grows up, he is generally not welcome. People are too familiar with the person as he grows up. They never accept one of their own as being some kind of expert in some given field, and especially in the spiritual realm. Everyone is their own expert, or they accept total strangers from far off places. Ever given good advice to someone you know, and had them sort of shrug it off. But when they hear the same advice from a total stranger, they listen intently? Sort of mixed up, but that is the way that people are. Spouses often ignore each other, but listen to others. Office workers, or supervisors ignore each others advice, but when they go to some seminar and hear the same things, they listen intently as though hearing it for the first time.
So it is with Jesus. The people wanted things their way. Jesus had a talent for curing the sick, sure. And they would gladly capitalize on that good fortune. With a little emphasis on the fortune part. But Jesus said no. He gave them what they really needed, the gospel, and that they were so negative that even His miracles would not turn them to God. God helps those who are positive to Him. God rejects those who reject Him.
Their first reaction of praise, 'Such a good reader...', has now turned to rage, anger, hate. How fickle. Sinners are unstable, inconsistent, self centered. If things do not go their way, then they become angry and try to force things. They use words to hurt at first, then violence if words do not work. They rally each other with rage, yelling, screaming, pumping each other with their hate. They are a mob, disorganized, unruly, don't have any idea why they are angry, but need to take their anger out on someone, anyone.
How dare Jesus come into their town, into their synagogue (which they built with their own money and donated labor and material). How dare He refuse them a show of miracles. Who does He think He is after all - God??? Well we'll just show Him a thing or two.
So Jesus demonstrates their instability, their anger, their need for a change of heart, their refusal to change even in the presence of God. Jesus demonstrates to each one of us, that we are merely a blink away from being just like them. Do we listen to advice? Do we ponder all that we hear or read? Weighing it against Bible doctrine? Discerning whether it is correct or false? Do we make the right choices in life based on Gods truth or the worlds truth, popular opinion? Do we try to get our way in life by yelling louder than the other person, by intimidation or threat? If so then we are weak in our soul and in need of a change in our thinking process.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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