Sermon Illustrations

And what about other examples from fictional stories: in Beauty and the Beast we find the Beauty having a preconceived notion of what the Beast is like…in the movie Shrek…which by the way is Anne’s nickname for me when I shave my head…. the princess in that movie…she had a preconceived notion of who her rescuer should be…and man was she surprised when it turned out to be an ogre! And here we are dealing with much the same thing…. Nathanael…he had a preconceived notion of who the Messiah was supposed to be…and he definitely wasn’t from Nazareth…and it seems that perhaps he had good reason for these expectations. You see, the Messiah, he was the subject of over 300 prophecies in scripture…and Jesus fulfilled every one of them…but there was no direct prophecy in scripture about Jesus being from Nazareth.

Now, those of you that know your Bible, you immediately think of what Matthew wrote in 2:23 of his Gospel…that the prophets’ statements that “he will be called a Nazarene” were fulfilled in Jesus. But, did you know…this is not stated anywhere in the Old Testament? Nowhere in Isaiah, Jeremiah, Micah, or any other prophets is there a statement that Jesus would be from Nazareth. Is this a contradiction? I don’t think so…the Holy Spirit inspired these gospel writers in ways that we will never be inspired. Also, don’t forget…there were such things as oral traditions that were not necessarily scripture…and it could have been one of these traditions Matthew was referring to…so, I don’t think there is a contradiction at all.