“He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him. 16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: 18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”[f] 20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke 4.15-21
It was understood in Judaism and in the Old Testament, that Isaiah 58 and 61 contained statements describing the Messiah. Things the Messiah would do, promises he would make. For example, the Messiah would be filled with God’s Spirit, he would proclaim good news to the poor, freedom for prisoners, sight to the blind, freedom for the oppressed. For much of their existence the Jews had been in captivity, or as slaves or displaced from the Promised Land for one reason or another.
Jesus was reading this Messianic prophecy and said, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in our hearing.” In other words he was saying, “Hey folks, listening up, this is about me!” Hearing this for us is important but we aren’t shaken by it. But for the Jews — mind blowing!
Imagine if I came up to you and said, “I am a big deal.” And then proceeded to tell you all the things that make me special. You would think I was crazy because you might know me and you know that I am “special,” but not a big deal! (Maybe to my momma!) Well Jesus was not just saying he was important by making a self-proclamation of this scroll, he was saying he was the biggest deal. He was saying he was the Messiah, the Savior, God.
I would have loved to be in the synagogue that day or maybe even be the attendant who handed him the Isaiah scroll. That would be incredible. But the most amazing thing is Jesus among us. God coming in the flesh to save and sanctify all who call upon his name.
Will you trust in Jesus as the Messiah today? Why or why not?
“O Lord God, you are good. I thank you for loving me. I thank you for saving your people, for coming to earth, and living among us. Come now, Holy Spirit, fill us with your power and love. Help us be your hands and feet to a world in of your care. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen