So all those in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, and rose up and thrust Him out of the city; and they led Him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw Him down over the cliff. Then passing through the midst of them, He went His way. (Luke 4:28-30)
Throw Jesus Over The Cliff
Nazareth was the hometown of Jesus where He grew up with his brothers and sisters in a village known for its carpenters. The family of Joseph and Mary was well-known among the tight-knit community. Beginning His Galilean ministry, Jesus returned to Nazareth where he had been brought up, and as His custom was, went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day. He had often read from the scriptures, and when he was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah, Jesus read from the section of the text describing the coming Messiah and how the Spirit of the Lord would be upon Him. Closing the book and handing it back to the attendant, Jesus sat down, and the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him.
No one in the synagogue could have expected what happened next. Following the reading from Isaiah, Jesus told the crowd the He was the fulfillment of the passage from Isaiah. Jesus spoke graciously to the crowd, but they became angry when He suggested they were hard-hearted and unwilling to hear His teaching. The only thing the people of Nazareth could see was a lowly carpenter’s son. They refused to accept Jesus was anything but common. As Jesus spoke, the fury of the people increased to murderous anger. Grabbing Jesus roughly, the crowd shoved their fellow citizen out of the town to throw Him headlong over the cliff in the hopes of killing Him. Jesus did not fight back or resist. Tussled along the road and out of the city, the men held Jesus firmly with rough hands, screaming at him and threatening His life. As they neared the place at the top of the hill, Jesus passed through them and went His way.
A miracle was done in their presence, and no one seemed to take note. As the men carried Jesus to the hill, He disappeared. Were they so intent on their murderous plot, they could not see the miracle before their eyes? Jesus went to Capernaum, about 30 miles, and began teaching in the synagogue. He healed many people in the area and spent time preaching throughout the synagogues of Galilee, but no one from Nazareth came and acknowledged what happened in their city. How did they explain what happened to Jesus when they returned to the city? Throughout His early ministry, Jesus would visit the area around Nazareth, and again, the people of the city made no special effort to acknowledge what Jesus had said and done.
God has always made Himself visible to the world. His Son came in the flesh and through teaching and miracles showed Himself to be the Son of God. The spirit of the people of Nazareth pervades the hearts of men who shut their ears to the teaching of Christ and would rather throw Him over the hill headlong to kill Him than to accept His message. Many opportunities are given for the people to see the power of Jesus, but they refuse. The Bible is the mind of God revealed to help man find peace and truth, and like the people of Nazareth, men squander the opportunities until it is too late. Their disbelief did not change the fact that Jesus was the fulfillment of Isaiah. He died to bear the sins of humanity and to open a pathway to the grace of the Father. Pardon cannot be given to a man who refuses to accept it.
Jesus came to show men He was the only begotten Son of God, and through Him, salvation is found. Everything man needs is provided in the Bible to direct him to God. The words of Jesus are true, and He is the light of the world. Sadly, none of this will matter to hearts that are stopped up. Men would rather throw Jesus over the hill than listen to Him. When the miracle of the final day comes, there will be no more hope. As Jesus disappeared from the crowd the day they wanted to kill Him, so will the opportunities for salvation fade away. What will you do with Jesus?