My one word for the year is “Audacious“ with one of the definitions being “extremely bold or daring” (from dictionary.com). My eyes and ears are becoming more attuned to when God stops me in His Word to teach me more about my word.
After healing a young girl thought to be dead, Jesus returns to His hometown and began teaching in the synagogue only to find Himself mocked and rejected by many. The Gospel of Mark tells us:
“They were deeply offended and refused to believe in him.” (Mark 6:3, NLT)
They were rejecting Him and they were offended? Should it not have been Jesus who was the one offended?
They were questioning the source of Jesus’ wisdom and power as He had not studied with the learned rabbis of the day and surely did not hold credentials. The crowd viewed Him as one of them, and merely by His humble occupation of a carpenter. Their familiarity with Jesus blinded them to His greatness.
We must look beyond the ordinary to see the extraordinary.
Jesus’ response to their unbelief?
“And he was amazed at their unbelief.” (verse 6, NLT)
We can find Jesus amazed another time in Scripture.
A Roman officer comes to Jesus to ask for healing for his slave who is “sick and near death” (Luke 7:2). Before Jesus even arrives at the house, the Roman officer sends the message that he is unworthy to even have Jesus in his home and suggests that Jesus “just say the word from where you are and my servant will be healed” (Luke 7:7).
Jesus’ response to his belief?
“When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to the crowd that was following him, he said, “I tell you, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel!” (Luke 7:9, NLT)
Jesus was amazed at the Roman officer’s faith. We find that Jesus is amazed by both the lack of faith and the abundance of faith.
In His hometown response, while Jesus was amazed, it was a negative response which caused Him to limit His activity. While He could do anything, He chose to withhold the doing of miracles. He was not there to impress them but to bless them.
With the Roman officer, He was moved to respond with a miracle as He had not seen faith like this in Israel.
Faith – when lacking or in abundance, amazes Jesus.
May we err on the side of abundant faith, believing that our Savior is able to do all things. And may we trust Him, in all things, with His response.