“Can anything good come from Nazareth?” (John 1:46)
It is easy to disparage somebody else’s hometown or neighborhood. It is a way to knock people down and not take them seriously without attacking them directly. People believe highly in their heritage, pedigree and credentials. We tend to rely on these things as a way of proving our worth or bolstering ourselves ahead of others. Rather than look to the content of people’s character or cultivate our own, we find it much easier to be destructive.
Jesus shows up on the scene…from Nazareth of all places. Why would anyone take him seriously? Nazareth was a small overlooked town in the backwater of the empire. It was a place no one would expect to produce anything significant or worthwhile. Nothing was expected to come from Nazareth, at least nothing good.
Yet there he is: Jesus of Nazareth.
What will people do when they encounter him? Listen? Follow? Ignore? Dismiss?
What might it take for people to take this Jesus seriously in their lives?
What might it take for us to take him seriously in ours?