Year 2 Day 126
Read — Mark 6:1-6 (focus v1-2a)
Message Alan Burke
Today we live in a world that is more interdependent than at any other time in human history. That’s not all down to the technological revolution that has happened in our lifetimes, yes it has had a profound impact supply chains, production patterns, outsourcing but from the industrial revolution onwards we have been becoming more and more interdependent. Before the industrial revolution most peoples lives were failure insular. This meant that you would have been reliant on your neighbours, nearly everything would have been made, produced and sourced locally. Needed new sandals well it’s your man down the street, your fella two doors down he’s your man to build you a new shed, everyone was reliant on everyone else, everyone knew everyone else.
That’s how it was in Jesus day and Nazareth where he came from Nazareth wasn’t a big place. Your talking population of about 500 people, with dwellings made of earth, flat roofs, and in town land terms its around sixty acres of rocky hillside off the beaten track. Like there would have been fairly insular, there were no cars to jump into to head to the nearest supermarket or hardware store, no amazon man arriving with your brown box of goodies, not even a general store.
As Jesus arrives to Nazareth, there is no mention of the crowds who were coming out to Jesus, he isn’t welcomed by a ticker-tape-parade, there are no welcome home banners adorning buildings, nobody lining the streets in expectation. Rather it’s Jesus accompanied by his disciples, those who he had called to himself, the twelve with maybe a few dozen others.
His arrival though wouldn’t have gone unnoticed, it’s not a big place after all, but what is significant is that in the year or so that Jesus has been away, likely leaving there alone, maybe unnoticed, he returns with disciples. He returns with those who had seen and heard, who had witnessed amazing things, who were learning more and more about the wonder of the word incarnate Jesus Christ. The disciples may have expected that Jesus would be welcomed as a hero, that he would do many wonders among them, there in home town, but the reality of spiritual apathy is clear. Here reality bites and rejection comes.
Were told that when the Sabbath came, Jesus began to teach in the Synagogue. There is nothing striking about this, after all Jesus had taught many times in the synagogue throughout his ministry, and had taught the people where ever he was as the crowds came out to him. But they were not coming so much to hear the message that he proclaimed, to hear what he had to say, rather they came in their droves, to see what he was doing, how he was healing many and casting out demons.
Look what we are told that in his own town “many who heard him were amazed” (2a). They were full of wonder, they are taken aback by his teaching but their amazement ends up in offence. Just like the family of Jesus, these people were those in a sense who were closest to him, they had seen Jesus grow up but their proximity meant nothing. Familiarity to Jesus, knowing about him, knowing who he was and is, knowing the claims that he makes, does not make one a disciple, we must respond in faith. To those who receive him, those whom believe in him, he gave the right to become children of God.
Q17 Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?
The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery. (Rom. 5:12)