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Jesus had been baptized, as God desired.  God had wrapped Him in His Arms through the Holy Spirit.  God had joyously proclaimed Jesus was His much Loved Son.  Jesus had been both enfolded by the Spirit and led by The Spirit into His Exam.

Jesus had passed His Exam with flying colors.  He came back from the desert ready to roll.  Luke 4:14 records that 

Jesus returned to Galilee

 in The Power of The Spirit 

and news about Him spread through the whole countryside.  

He was teaching in their synagogue, 

and everyone praised Him!

 

Going Home …

Jesus then turned toward home.  He went to Nazareth, where He had grown up.  Here is where the story really gets interesting.  Mary, Elizabeth and John had all been able to make the shift from seeing Jesus as an ordinary human to seeing Jesus as the Messiah.  However, it was not so easy for those in the synagogue to make the switch.

Many of us get trapped in our spiritual comfort zone.  When we seek and we find, we are so happy that we often stop with what we have found.  We stop looking or expecting anything more.  Not only that, but we may become threatened by anyone who claims to have additional light.  Sometimes we want to shut out that intruding light immediately, so we can go on living comfortably with the way we always thought things were.

Even though Jesus would offer Love, Peace, Joy and genuine Comfort, Jesus did not come as the sugar plum fairy, dishing out things that would only reinforce what people thought was comfort.  He came to shake things up!  He said it plainly, as recorded in Matthew10: 34-36,

Do not suppose that 

I have come to bring peace to the earth.  

I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.  

For I have come to turn a man against his father, 

a daughter against her mother, 

a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 

A man’s enemies will be the members of his own household!

What kind of man was this?    One Who knew Who He was, What His Mission was, and One Who knew His Message would not set well with everyone.  He had faced satan up close and personal, and He was ready to meet whatever conflict lay ahead.

 

 

Jesus’ Proclaims His Mission!

Jesus’ desert experience with satan had allowed Him to flex His Spiritual Muscles.  He absolutely knew Who He was and He was about to proclaim it, in the same way He had in the desert — through The Word!  Remember The Sword of The Spirit is The Word of God!

Jesus went to the synagogue, “as was His Custom.”  In other words, He had been there many times before.  But this time was different.  Luke 4:16-19, records,

He stood up to read 

and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him.  

Unrolling it, He found the place where it is written:

“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, 

to proclaim the year of the Lord’s Favor.”

Sound good so far, right?  Jesus dutifully fulfilled His Assignment as reader of The Word.  But …

Luke 4:20-21 records the beginning of the shaking of the earth.

Then He rolled up the Scroll, 

gave it back to the attendant and sat down.  

The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on Him.  

He began by saying to them,

 “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing!”

 

 

Are You Crazy???

Now things were different.  Jesus was no longer that 12 year old who had hung out at the Temple for five days.  He was a man, who should know better than to put Himself on the same level as God.  Those who thought they knew Him looked at each other and said, “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?”  But before they could just write Him off as a mad man, Jesus continued.

He addressed their unbelief, by telling them in advance that no prophet is accepted in his own hometown.  He also referenced Elijah and his limitations because of the people’s unbelief.  By the time Jesus finished talking, they knew He was beyond mad.  He was a blasphemer, Who was claiming to be God!

The people ran Him out of town and were going to throw Him off a cliff.  But He walked right through the crowd and went on His Way!

 

 

Who Are You?

Who are you?  What if you made the outrageous claim that you are a son or daughter of God?  How do you think people would react?  Are you a son or daughter of God?  Before you answer too quickly, review these statements from God’s Word.

But to all who did receive Him, 

who believed in His Name, 

He gave the Right to become Children of God! 

 John 2:12

For in Christ Jesus, 

you are all Sons of God, 

through faith!  

Galatians 3:26

See what kind of Love 

The Father has given to us, 

that we should be called Children of God;

 and so we are!  

1st John 3:1

The Spirit Itself bears witness 

with our Spirit

 that we are Children of God! 

 Romans 8:16

And there are other scriptures that testify joyfully to the fact that we are indeed Children of God!  Not only do most of us not believe it of each other, but we do not believe it of ourselves.  If we were indeed a Child of God, then it would mean that we would not be able to give ourselves so many breaks.  We could no longer toss things aside, with the comment, “Hey, I can’t do that.  I’m not God!”

No, you are not God!  But you are indeed His Child.  Jesus was later to make another amazing statement that His Followers would do even greater things than the things they saw Him doing.  But, before that, we all have some growing to do.

Where do we start?  Believe you are a Child of God.  Get to know God, your Dad.  Learn how He thinks.  Stay in constant contact.  Obey everything He tells you to do and don’t do the things He tells you not to do.  Praise and thank Him that He is your Father.  You are legitimately His!

And now, go back and re-read what Jesus read in the synagogue that day.  This time, read it out loud, as He did, but realizing that you are speaking it of yourself as a Child of God.  You will find that God is breathing into you His Mission for you … and it’s exactly the same Mission as was Jesus’ Mission!

The Spirit of The Lord is on me,

because He has appointed me

to proclaim good news to the poor.

He has sent me

 to proclaim freedom to the prisoners 

and recovery of sight for the blind,

to set the oppressed free,

to proclaim the year of The Lord’s Favor!

 

Points to Ponder

Who are you?  Are you a Child of God?

If you have difficulty acknowledging you are a Child of God, spend some time with God, discussing what causes you to hesitate.

If your Mission is the same as Jesus’ Mission, what adjustments do you need to make in your present life to be able to move forward in The Power of The Spirit to proclaim the Good News?

 

Jesus

 

 

 

About carolynpriesterjones

Follower of Jesus, Seeker of Truth, Commentator on Life, Light Bearer, Water Carrier, one of God's Creations still under construction

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