Year 2 Day 128
Read — Mark 6:1-6 (focus v2b-4)
Message Alan Burke
As Jesus went to Nazareth, teaching in the synagogue the people were amazed at his teaching, yet their amazement soon turned to offence. Look at what they said to him, “where did this man get these things”, notice they didn’t even call him by his name. Then “What’s this wisdom that has been given to him, that he even does miracles”. They had all likely heard the wonders that he was doing but they remain unconvinced, after all his family had and had tried to shut him up (Mk 3:20-21). Then “isn’t this the carpenter”, it’s like saying sure he’s only a labourer, he never went to university. There remarks are mockery but they are not to bad, it’s like saying sarcastically; “aww great teacher isn’t he”, then “ooo I wonder where he gets this wisdom from” and “he’s a miracle worker don’t you know”. As they continue they exclaim, “Isn’t this Mary’s son”
Remember the culture at that time, sons were always identified by their fathers, not their mothers. Even when their fathers were dead your were still identified by your father, like in a similar many of us have the surnames of our Fathers. The point that they are making is, sure isn’t he the illegitimate child of Mary! Added with the other children of Mary, his brothers and sisters, they are making the point that Jesus is an illegitimate child, ordinary lad, thinking too much off himself! Jesus was one of them and he’d come back, hearing his claims it was too much for them. Finally it is clear as verse three ends, they took offence at him.
All of this is because they know him, among those listening there in the crowd would have been ladies who nursed him, changed his nappy or what ever they had back then, there were also those who grew up with him, those who Jesus had done a bit of work for, whom he had fixed their roof, sorted out their plough, it wasn’t that long ago that he was doing these things. They took offence not because they did not know him, rather they took offence because they knew him.
They knew him not as Jesus the teacher, the miracle worker, the Son of God the long awaited Messiah, but they knew him as the local boy, they can’t wrap their heads around it. Not only is Jesus rejected by the people of the town and the wider circle of relatives there, but also by His own family. Just like other prophets before him, (2 Chr 36:16; Jer 11:21; Mk 6:17; 12:1–12), Jesus is not honoured by his own family and his hometown. He makes that clear in verse 4 in what he says. Yet this rejection by his own foreshadows the ultimate rejection he would face in Jerusalem by the whole of the people of God.
There is a sense at some level we know this is how people work. Spiritual apathy makes the message of Jesus hard to hear, the condition of our hearts by nature is such that people don’t want to know. Yet we must tell others of the good news, those whom we know and love, knowing that God will work according to his time and purposes. At times it’s easier not to share the gospel with others because they know about us, they know our past, our indiscretions, or weaknesses, and it can hold us back. But the grace of God that forgives sinners like us covers all those things and we are to tell others of the good news of the Christ, Crucified Risen and ascended, and the grace of God.
Q19 What is the misery of that estate whereinto man fell?
All mankind by their fall lost communion with God, (Gen. 3:8,10,24) are under his wrath and curse, (Eph. 2:2–3, Gal. 3:10) and so made liable to all miseries in this life, to death itself, and to the pains of hell for ever. (Lam. 3:39, Rom. 6:23, Matt. 25:41,46)