He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. And he marveled because of their unbelief. And he went about among the villages teaching. | Mark 6:1-6
We’re big on hometowns, aren’t we? They hold a special place in our hearts. We have pride for our cities! What happens when a celebrity returns home? What happens when an artist mentions a city in their lyrics? The people of the city get excited! They’re proud of their city and proud of those who “started at the bottom” in their hometown and have now “made it to the top.” It gives them hope that it could happen for them too.
Well, Jesus was a famous Nazarene, visiting Nazareth, surrounded by His fellow Nazarenes, offering REAL hope, and none of them wanted anything to do with Him. In fact, we read that the people “took offense at Him.”
Is it possible that we do that today? Is it possible that we, instead of rejoicing in His presence, take offense at Him? That we’re embarrassed by Him? Annoyed of Him? That we’re offended by His demands and expectations of us as believers? Maybe you’re thinking that I’m reaching here… maybe you’re thinking, “We’re not Nazarenes, we’re not His relatives, and we’re not from His household.”
Well actually, we are. We may not be from Nazareth, but we do share a home in heaven. In fact, John 14:2-3 tells us that Jesus went to prepare a place for us. And technically, we are His relatives. Romans 8:15-17 calls us “fellow heirs with Christ” and testifies that we are the children of God! Now, would you be surprised if gave you evidence that we’re also of the same household of Jesus? Ephesians 2:19-21 ACTUALLY states, “you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.”
So… same hometown, same relatives, and same household of Jesus Christ. Yeah, I’m pretty sure Jesus wasn’t JUST talking about the Nazarenes. And I’m sure He wasn’t JUST talking about Joseph and Mary’s children. He was most certainly talking about us – the very ones whom He purchased with His blood.
And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” | Mark 6:4
Upon reading these words, I was left with this question: In my life, is Jesus without honor? In my church, in my school/work, in my relationships, in my “extracurricular activities,” in my day-to-day hustle and bustle, in my daily grind, is Jesus without honor?
Friends, how are we living? Are we serving, working, loving in a way that honors Christ, boasts Christ? If Jesus walked into our schools/workplace would we be SO excited to see Him? Would we be OVERJOYED at His presence? Would we be SO proud to be a part of His family that we’d make sure everyone knew it? Because that’s probably what we’d do if He was a famous person. That’s probably what we’d do if He was a celebrity or a world-changer or a peace-maker or a life-saver.
That’s exactly who He is.
And He’s actually with us everywhere we go.
Hmm. Well, that changes things, doesn’t it? If we’re truly followers of Christ, of the very household of God, we’d have the same desires as Him, wouldn’t we? We’d share the same hopes, the same burdens, the same mission. So do we? DO WE share the heart of Christ? And in having His desires, hopes, burdens, mission flow through us, are we honoring Him? Are we proud to be His? Are we excited to know Him and make Him known?
Is Jesus without honor in our lives? Because if He is, something needs to change. If He is, we’re no better than the Nazarenes of whom He spoke.
Because of their hardness of heart, because of their pride, because of their blindness, because of their unbelief, we read that “He could do no mighty work there” (v.5).
When we deny Him the honor He deserves, we cause our own destruction, our own suffering, our own sorrow. He can heal, He can restore, He can ease our burdens and remove our pain. He can. And He longs to. But until we move out of the way, until we give Him free reign in our hearts, until we honor Him as Lord over all, we won’t experience His mighty working in our lives.
We want transformation. We want change. We want miracles. But we are blind to what we need. And what we need is HIM. Let’s yield to Him. Let’s live for His glory, not ours. And may we never let a single second pass without Him being honored in our lives.