Explore the Bible Study: Rejected

9:55 AM


Every day we are asked to make choices. While most choices are trivial, many other choices can be life or death decisions. While we try to choose wisely, I’m sure most of you can look back and regret some of the choices you have made. The people in Jesus’ hometown of Nazareth were faced with a choice. This choice was regarding the hometown boy--Jesus. Would they choose to accept or reject Him? What can we learn from their choices? This is the focus of LifeWay's Explore the Bible Study: Rejected.

Luke 4:14 tells us that, after a time of testing, Jesus “returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread throughout the entire vicinity. He was teaching in their synagogues, being acclaimed by everyone.” It is at this time that Jesus stops by for a visit in His hometown. The people of Nazareth had a choice. They knew Jesus as the hometown boy, the son of Mary and Joseph. What they didn’t know is who this hometown boy really was and the message He was going to share with them. They had no idea that the Son of God, the Messiah, Emmanuel (God with Us) had been in their presence while He was growing up. Let’s look at their choice when they were standing face-to-face with the Messiah. Let’s learn from Jesus about speaking the truth of the gospel, even when people choose to reject it.

Luke 4:16-30 begins with Jesus getting ready to read a passage of Scripture from Isaiah in the local Nazareth synagogue during Sabbath worship. Knowing what we know about Jesus—that He is the Son of God, He and the Father are One, He is God—I want you to imagine this unfolding. The Author of the Bible, the One who gave Isaiah the words to write, the One whom Isaiah was writing about, was reading the passage. He was telling the people what He had given Isaiah to write about Himself. 

This is where the narrative begins! As you continue your study through the entire passage you will discover the true scope of the gospel as Jesus explains that the gospel is for everyone and anyone who will respond. He uses the examples of two who would be viewed by His hometown and by most Jews of His day as unworthy candidates--two Gentiles.

He reveals the true nature of the gospel and the choices people have when they are confronted with the truth of the gospel. Then, Luke describes to us the rejection Jesus experienced in His own hometown when sharing the truth of the gospel.

We all make choices everyday regarding how we are going to live out our faith in Christ. Here are two choices we must make each day:
  1. Don’t avoid speaking and living the truth of the gospel. If you feel like a failure when your witness is rejected or when you are criticized for speaking truth about your faith in Christ, people aren’t rejecting you; they are rejecting Christ. He can handle it, so let Him! Jesus could have remained popular in His hometown by simply doing a few miracles, taking care of some of the poor, and remaining silent about the good news, but He didn’t avoid speaking the truth. We must never avoid speaking the truth about the good news of Jesus.
  2. Don’t think some are more deserving of the gospel than others. We are reminded in Romans 10:13 that “everyone who calls on the of the Lord will be saved.”
As you study this passage, you might be brought you face-to-face with Christ and realize you have never trusted in Him as the true Messiah, the one who died to pay for your sins. I want to encourage you to talk to God and receive Christ and then talk with someone who can help you further. 

You can talk to Christ using words like these: “My life is broken by sin and I need You, Jesus. I believe You came to live, die, and be raised from the dead to recuse me from my sin. Forgive me. I turn from my selfish ways and put my trust in You. I know that You, Jesus, are Lord of all, and I will follow You.”

Romans 10:9 promises that, “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” 

I pray that you will make the right choice today. Don’t be like the people of Nazareth. Choose to follow Jesus and not reject Him!

The Bible study helps have been modified in order to provide opportunities for both online and face-to-face teaching venues. Ideas in boxes will be provided for engaging groups more when meeting in person. The boxed items could also be modified and used for online discussion as well. 


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