Summary: Nazareth – a synagogue visit - Luke chapter 4 verses 14-30 – sermon by Gordon Curley. PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


Jesus began in Galilee (vs 14-15)

Jesus began in the synagogue (vs 16)

Jesus began with Isiah (vs 16)

Jesus began to disclose himself (vs 16)



• One day Albert Einstein had an idea:

• What would a light wave look like to someone keeping pace with it?

• In exploring this possibility, Einstein came up with his Special Theory of Relativity.

• Bill Bowerman (inventor of Nike training shoes) had an idea:

• What happens if I pour rubber into my waffle iron? The result was a sports shoe.

• Today Nike is the world's leading supplier of athletic shoes and apparel.

• Fred Smith (founder of Federal Express) had an idea:

• Why can’t there be reliable overnight mail service?

• Today FedEx Express is one of the world's largest express transportation companies,

• It provides fast and reliable delivery to every U.S. address;

• And to more than 220 countries and territories.

• Godfrey Hounsfield had an idea:

• Why can’t we see in three dimensions what is inside a human body without cutting it open?

• The result of his idea was CAT scanner.

• (An x-ray is a two-dimensional picture and a CAT-scan is three-dimensional.)

• Masaru Ibuka (honorary chairman, Sony) had an idea:

• Why don’t we remove the recording function and speakers;

• And put headphones in the recorder? (Result: the Sony Walkman.)

• Without out it, the 160 million or so owners of an Apple iPod MP3 players;

• Would not have one to use!

• Many of these questions are deemed ridiculous at first.

• Other shoe companies thought Bowerman’s waffle shoe was a "really stupid idea."

• Godfrey Hounsfield was told the CAT scan was "impractical."

• Fred Smith proposed the idea of Federal Express in a paper at Yale and got a C.

• Masaru Ibuka got comments like:

• "A recorder with no speaker and no recorder -- are you crazy?"

• TRANSITION: 2,000 years ago a preacher stood up to speak in a synagogue,

• What he said was considered ‘crazy, senseless, irrational’.

• By those who heard him.

• But in time his words would be vindicated;

• And many would come to see the genius who was in that synagogue that day!

This morning we are continuing our series of studies called ‘Travelling with Jesus to…’

• This morning our destination is Nazareth in Galilee.

• Today Nazareth is home to more than 60,000 Israeli Arabs,

• Nazareth is the largest Arab city in Israel.

• And Upper Nazareth is home to thousands more Jewish residents.

(1). Jesus Began in Galilee (vs 14)

“Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside”

Nazareth is famous for one thing, and one thing alone, it was the home town of Jesus:

• It was in Nazareth that Jesus spent his boyhood,

• Living with his mother and step-father and his half-brothers & sisters.

• It was in Nazareth that Jesus trained to be a carpenter;

• It was in Nazareth that Jesus spent his teenage years,

• It was in Nazareth that Jesus lived in obscurity until he was 30 years old.

Nazareth is famous for one thing, and one thing alone, it was the home town of Jesus.

• (a). In 1st century Palestine, the village of Nazareth;

• Was a nondescript dot on the map with not much to offer,

• (b).It was overshadowed by nearby Sepphoris (Seph-or-is) or Zippori

• The luxurious Greek-style capital of Herod Antipas.


• Question: Does anyone here know where the exact centre of England is?

• Answer: Meridian.

• In the village is an ancient, listed monument dating back more than 500 years;

• That proudly stands on the green in this West Midland village.

• TRANSITION: Now Meridian is lost in the shadow of its neighbour;

• The more important city of Coventry (the city of three spires)

• And while tourists come from all over the world to visit the Old and New Cathedrals;

• No-one notices little Meridian and its claim to fame!

• At the time of Jesus Nazareth was overshadowed by nearby Sepphoris (Seph-or-is);

• The luxurious Greek-style capital of Herod Antipas.

• (c).At the time of Jesus:

• And its population was about 20,000 inhabitants.

• Scholar William Barclay,

• Says it was not a village but a ‘polis’ (meaning town or city),

• And its population was about 20,000 inhabitants.

• (d). Nazareth is in the north, Galilee,

• The name Galilee means a circle (Hebrew word, ‘Galil’)

• It was so called because it was circled by non-Jewish nations.


• You do realise of course that Jesus was a northerner!

• That he spoke with a northern accent!

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Scott Borman

commented on Apr 23, 2017

Thank you for your insights. I found them helpful in my study of the is passage. Blessings

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