Today’s Reading: Mark 6-7
Today’s Reflection: Mark 6:4-6a
4) And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” 5) And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6a) And he marveled because of their unbelief.
I’m not sure where the saying ‘you can’t go home again’ comes from, but perhaps it is from this Gospel story. Jesus returns to the town He grew up in: Nazareth. After having begun His powerful ministry, having preached with authority and performed incredible miracles, what would you expect for Jesus return? Cheering crowds? Long lines of people waiting to be healed? People bringing their children to be blessed? Repentance and spiritual revival among the people? Instead, what Jesus found were people who refused to believe that the man who had grown up among them could be the Messiah. They word even says ‘they took offence at him’ (Mark 6:3). As Jesus contemplated their reactions, ‘He marveled because of their unbelief.’
Imagine that. What does it take to amaze God? Something quite remarkable, I would imagine. And Jesus was amazed. By their unbelief. They had seen Him grow up. They must have known He was no ordinary child. They must have heard the reports from that trip to Jerusalem, the questions and answers that astounded the priests. They must have seen that this young man was fulfilling the prophesies of the Messiah. Everything pointed to Jesus being the Christ.
And yet, they still refused to believe, preferring to take offence at the very thought instead. Amazing.
I wonder, if sometimes our unbelief causes God to wonder, or to marvel, or to be amazed? After everything He’s done for us, everything He has revealed, all of the promises made and kept, there are still times we refuse to believe, aren’t there? Maybe when we don’t get what we want, or when we’re asked to do something we really don’t want to, or to give up something we think we have a right to. We decide then that we’re not going to believe, going to question, going to let our faith fail. When it suits us to do so. But God knows we know better. And that’s why He marvels.
Galatians 6:7 – Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.