“The Rejection of Jesus in Nazareth”
Luke 4:16-30 Key word: “Freedom” Rev. Dr. Scott T. Arnold
3/01/2020 at First Baptist Church of Los Angeles, CA
Week 9: “Sojourning with King Jesus“
Introduction: Overcoming rejection and disappointments.
A. Jesus the Prophet returns to His hometown. Luke 4:16-17. 16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
B. Jesus reads from the Prophet Isaiah (Luke 4:18-20a)
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down.
C. Jesus identifies their lack of faith (Luke 4:20b-23)
- They were slow to make the connection to Jesus. (20b-22) 7 The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”
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.
- They were doubtful without proof (23) 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.’”
D. Jesus the Prophet confronts the Hometown (Lk 4:24-27) 14 “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.”
E. The hometown rejects Jesus being Messiah (Lk 4:28-30) 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.
Key Point: There is new life, born of the Holy Spirit of God for all who believe in Jesus Christ. The truth of who Jesus is and what He would accomplish through His ministry is not accepted by all people as Jesus was rejected by His own people. Without faith in Jesus as the Savior and Messiah, even Jesus’ own hometown could not boast in their own prophet, but needed to repent of their sins too for atonement:
(Romans 3:21-25) 21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood —to be received by faith.
- What experiences of rejection from family or friends have been difficult to navigate or overcome in your life?
- How did Jesus deal with false assumptions and the rejection of His own hometown? Why was He so controversial to His fellow Jews?
- What do we learn from Jesus about understanding our worth before God, and of standing upon the truth of God?
- How can we overcome rejection to stay true to God? What is the role of walking together in the faith and staying on the path of truth?