THE 4 GOSPELS PARALLELED (Part 7 (1) – (4))

 (Study Outline sourced from “The System Bible Study” – “The Book of Life” {Zondervan])
(1) Jesus’ Message At Galilee   
“From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is near.”
Jesus begins His ministry proclaiming the same message as John the Baptist – “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is near.” , Mark in his account records Jesus’ words as “The time has come” ; this was the theme of His ministry until it was evident that He would be rejected by the Jews. The phrase in reference to the kingdom of heaven – “is near” or “has come” – did not refer to an immediate establishment of His earthly reign, but that the kingdom was being offered in the person of the King that would one day reign over the nation; and that the time of the establishment of the kingdom was now nearer than it was when John the Baptist presented his message
(2) The Second Visit To Cana   
“Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.”
“…a certain royal official” – probably an official in Herod’s service – no doubt had heard of the miracles that Jesus had performed both at Cana and in Judea, pleaded with Jesus to heal his son who was dying in Capernaum a fair distance away from Cana. The statement of Jesus was probably directed to the crowds that were following Him and to the general attitude of the population of Galileans – “Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders….you will never believe” – these signs and wonders were testimony to the fact that the messenger (Jesus) was genuinely sent by God . “So he and all his household believed” – they believed that Jesus was the Prophet that Moses and all the O.T. prophets had spoken about, because Jesus’ proclamation that his son would live was fulfilled
(3) Jesus’ First Rejection At Nazareth 
“I tell you the truth,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in his hometown. All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. 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 down the cliff.” 
Jesus returns to the town where He was brought up as a child, and went to the Synagogue on the Sabbath day, as was His custom. Being the guest reader, the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. Luke does not specify if the passage was assigned or whether Jesus chose it Himself, but He reads from Isaiah 61:1-2although Isaiah was speaking to the restoration of the nation after the then future Babylonian captivity, the prophecy also was pointing to the work of the Messiah at a still future time period, but Jesus stops at a very significant place in the reading – “to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour” , and continues to say – “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing” . The message Jesus was attempting to deliver was that Messiah had come to fulfil the first part of the prophecy – that of the subject of sin – the liberation from sin and all of its consequences. Sin had brought bondage and oppression by Satan, and blindness to the word of God in the lives of all mankind, and Jesus was now preaching the good news of deliverance from these consequences, not only for Israel but for all mankind; “All…were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips” – they were amazed because His words were: IMPERISHABLE ; MIGHTY ; SPIRIT ; LIFE-GIVING ; INCOMPARABLE ; JUDGMENT ; DIVINE . Jesus in His divinity knew that He would be rejected not only by the citizens of His hometown Nazareth, but by the entire nation of Israel, thus His statement – “no prophet is accepted in his hometown.” , and His further reference to Israel in “Elijah’s time…And in the time of Elisha” , indicating that because the Jews had rejected the message, the prophets were sent to Gentile members of the communities, and this unfortunate situation was about to be repeated by Israel if they would not accept the message that Jesus was trying to deliver, and indeed it was repeated by their rejection of Jesus <c.f. Lk. 10: 13-16; “….. he who rejects me rejects him who sent me.” . For this the people drove Him out of their city because He insinuated that the Gentiles would be partakers of God’s blessings .
(4) Jesus’ New Home In Capernaum   
“Leaving Nazareth, he went and lived in Capernaum, which was by the lake in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali– to fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah: “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, along the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles- the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”
Matthew’s account includes another Messianic prophecy to show that Jesus was indeed the promised King of Israel : “people living in darkness…. those living in the…. shadow of death..” – not only described the spiritual condition of the people in the “Galilee of the Gentiles” but all people who have not submitted to the claims of the gospel, sin has blinded the eyes and hardened the heart to God’s ways and as a result they live in the shadow of eternal death. “..a light has dawned.” – Jesus the light of the world to the good news of salvation had come into their midst, and into our world, but how many have made His light shine into their lives? The nation of Israel, under God’s curse for their unbelief, was blinded to the fact that Messiah had come and that He was the One to open their blinded eyes and their deaf ears .

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