Summary: PENTECOST 6(B) - June 30, 2002 - God’s good news is amazing as people are amazed at Jesus’ words but Jesus is amazed at their lack of faith.
GOD’S GOOD NEWS IS AMAZING
Mark 6:1-16 - June 30, 2002
1Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples. 2When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.
"Where did this man get these things?" they asked. "What’s this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles! 3Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?" And they took offense at him.
4Jesus said to them, "Only in his hometown, among his relatives and in his own house is a prophet without honor." 5He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. 6And he was amazed at their lack of faith. Then Jesus went around teaching from village to village.
Dearest Fellow-Redeemed and Saints in the Lord:
There are many amazing things in our life for each one of us. Sometimes the simplest things amaze us. Certainly, if you have lived a few years in this life, you have seen many amazing things in the world around you. For me one of the most amazing things is faith itself, because faith is just that--it is sure of the things we hope for and certain of the things that we do not see. Sometimes faith doesn’t fit into all the rules of science. It certainly doesn’t fit into all the rules of reason, but it fits into our hearts for eternity. For example, Jesus was teaching His disciples when He said to them that it would be easier for the camel to go through the eye of the needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. They were all taken aback and said, "Jesus, who is going to be saved then? How can anyone be saved?" They were right that no one by themselves with their own doing could ever possibly be saved, to being even close to step into the gates of heaven. Jesus was right in saying that it would be easier for the camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for anyone on his own goodness to get into the kingdom of heaven.
God’s good news to them was amazing. "Jesus looked at them and said, ’with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible’"(MATTHEW 19:26). You and I who possibly do not deserve anything at all but the punishment of hell are given the impossible--heaven itself. God’s good news is amazing! This is our theme for today. As we look at these words of our text, which God has placed before us, God’s good news is amazing; and we see that I. people are amazed at Jesus’ words; and sadly, II. Jesus was amazed at their lack of faith.
I. People were amazed at Jesus? words
Our text opens by saying, "Jesus left there and went to His hometown, accompanied by His disciples." He went back home. He went to the town of Nazareth where He grew up, not Bethlehem where He was born. He went there to see His family and His friends and His relatives, went there to visit with those that He knew and those that knew Him. We aren’t told much at all about Jesus growing up in Scripture. We know that He went to the Temple when He was age 12, and we hear again about Jesus when He begins His earthly ministry about the age of 30. In between we are not told anything at all except that, as Jesus lived in Nazareth, He grew in wisdom and stature and favor with God and among men.
Now, He went back to Nazareth to be among those men that He grew in wisdom and favor and stature. We are told His disciples went with Him. As His disciples were with Him and as His friends and family surrounded him, Jesus continues to teach not just by His words, but also by His actions. When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue. So when the time came for worship, He could have easily stayed at home with His family and friends and say, "Let’s just visit." When the day of worship came, He was in the House of Worship in order to worship God. As our text says, as the custom of the day, He was able to teach. The church leaders asked those who wanted to, to come forward and teach and preach.
Now we find the reaction: "When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard Him were amazed." Many saw Jesus as He was growing up, and they were amazed as He came teaching as one with authority. "’Where did this man get these things,’ they asked. ’What’s this wisdom that has been given Him, that He even does miracles?’" It would be nice to think that they were amazed at the power and the Word of God as they heard it. (We are going to talk about what they really were amazed at later in the sermon.) But if we would stop right there, it would seem that they were amazed at the power that Jesus had. For Jesus came as one who had wisdom now, one who came with such power that He was able to do miracles because of the power of God’s Word. It was not just that He was God’s Son, but through the power of God’s Word Jesus was able to perform miracles. The people were amazed at this. They were amazed at the wisdom of God’s Word. They were amazed at the power of God’s Word. They were amazed at the miracles that God’s Word was able to perform.