They rose up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill …to hurl him down headlong.
But Jesus passed through the midst of them and went away.
In today’s gospel we read how Jesus’ words turned the people against him so that they were ready to drive him out of town and throw him over a cliff. They took offence at Jesus. He was a carpenter, a construction worker, and they all knew his family. He was one of their own and he was lecturing to them. Who did he think he was? They were governed by in-group loyalties, by their own sense of entitlement. Their vision extended no further than taking care of their own; they expected no less from their hometown prophet. It is difficult to voice a challenging opinion to what is accepted as the norm.
We are afraid of the consequences if we dare to “speak truth to power.” Powerful people want to protect what they consider their prerogatives, and will sometimes go to great lengths to defend them whether they be religious groups or nations. We are afraid to speak God’s word openly. We are afraid that our words will offend people who have power to harm the messenger. Courage is only born of faith and conviction. We see this in our modern day prophets who speak as Jesus did and are thrown “over the cliff” either literally or by character assassination and exclusion.
Give me the courage to speak the truth in love.
Reflect on today’s gospel. Compare it with the present religious and political situation in our country.
They also asked, “Isn’t this the son of Joseph?” He said to them, “Surely you will quote me this proverb, ‘Physician, cure yourself,’ and say, ‘Do here in your native place the things that we heard were done in Capernaum.’” And he said, “Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place.
Luke 4:21 – 30
Men reject their prophets and slay them, but they love their martyrs and honor those they have slain.
Whenever you have truth it must be given with love, or the message and the messenger will be rejected.
When you’re following your inner voice, doors tend to eventually open for you, even if they mostly slam at first.
It takes a courageous fool to say things that have not been said and to do things that have not been done.
I really wish I was less of a thinking man and more of a fool not afraid of rejection.
Rejection is a challenge.