Jesus acted with the power of the Spirit; and on his return to Galilee, the news about him spread throughout all that territory. He began teaching in the synagogues of the Jews and everyone praised him.
When Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, as he usually did. He stood up to read, and they handed him the book of the prophet Isaiah.
Jesus then unrolled the scroll and found the place where it is written: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me. He has anointed me to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives and new sight to the blind; to free the oppressed and to announce the Lord’s year of mercy.”
Jesus then rolled up the scroll, gave it to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Then he said to them, “Today these prophetic words come true, even as you listen.”
All agreed with him, and were lost in wonder, while he spoke of the grace of God. Nevertheless, they asked, “Who is is but Joseph’s Son?“
If we were to imagine the headline of a daily gazette in Nazareth at the time of Jesus’ return to Galilee, perhaps it would read this way: “Local Son Returns as a Successful Preacher.” Perhaps the mothers would be milling around Mary congratulating her for the success of her son. The townspeople would be beaming with pride that someone among them made it big. This scenario is no different these days when a famous person returns home. He or she becomes the toast of the town. Being in such a privileged position carries a great responsibility, for one can influence others for good or for bad. For instance, there are famous people who use their popularity to take up causes for the benefit of humankind or the environment. They become good role models especially to the young. However this is not always the case. There are stars and athletes idolized by their young fans who fail to capitalize on their fame to do good. Jesus, aware of the power of the Spirit in him, uses the occasion of his homecoming to promote the cause of God’s kingdom, the good news that God saves us from our impoverishment, blindness, and oppression.
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