Tuesday, April 23: Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing
We return to our occasional reading from beginning to end through the Gospel of Luke, which emphasizes the way God acts among people and across history through Christ.
Read Luke 4:14-21
Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.
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, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
"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,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."
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. He began by saying to them, "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing."
Back in his hometown of Nazareth on a Sabbath, Jesus is invited to take part in leading worship in the synagogue by reading a passage from Isaiah that was recognized as a description of the coming Messiah. We can only imagine the silence and anticipation of the people eager to hear Jesus teach. But what they don't expect is for him to identify himself as the promised one Isaiah had written of.
How do you think you might have responded to Jesus' words? Could you have processed their significance and been able to recognize that prophecy was being fulfilled in real time before your eyes? Take a few minutes to imagine what you might have felt that day.