A New Adam

Jesus travelled throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom. Mathew 4, 23

All the people in the synagogue (of Nazareth) became very angry when they heard what he told them. They got up and pushed Jesus out of town. They were leading  him to the edge of the hill on which their town was built in order to push him down the cliff. But Jesus walked right through the crowd and went his way. Luke 4, 28 - 30

Dear readers,

Jesus proclaims the kingdom of God also in his hometown of Nazareth. At the service in the synagogue, he tells the audience that the prophet Isaiah´s promises are now fulfilled! What Jesus does is the fulfillment of the Scriptures. Jesus serves people, he cares about the poor and the oppressed. His ministry is a service to all people. Included are gentiles. They should also know the gospel. <Gentiles, too, are God-loved people!

With this proclamation Jesus does not make friends in Nazareth. Isn´t he the son of Josef, the carpenter?  And he claims to be the Messiah? That makes people angry! They push the Messiah out. They want to kill him. They even want to push him off the cliff.

But Jesus eludes the attackers. Nobody has the right to kill him. Only he himself decides when the hour of his death will be there. After his prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane he says: „Now you see, the hour has come, and the Son of Man is delivered into the hands of sinners” (Mathew 26,45). Now Jesus is going to the cross voluntarily. He sacrifices himself at the hour in which the mission of the heavenly Father is fulfilled. It has been accomplished, he says at the cross (John 19:30).

Jesus will not be the victim of lynch justice. Religious people bring him to trial. As in Nazareth and later in Jerusalem, the central question even today is: Who is Jesus? Is he really the Messiah? Is he really the son of God? The high priest in Jerusalem wanted clarity. He asks the man from Nazareth: “I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.” “You have said so,” Jesus replied (Mathew 26, 63/64). That was  his death sentence!

When Jesus died at the cross, a Roman centurion recognized from moment to another, that this man was Christ, the son of God. It was a pagan soldier who testified: “Surely he was the Son of God!“ (Mathew 27, 54)

On the cliff of Nazareth, Jesus left his enemies aside. He left them behind and continued  his mission. At Easter, Jesus Christ passes through death. He leaves death, the enemy of God, behind and goes on. He goes to the women who were mourning at grave. He goes to the disciples. He is also on the way to people today. He is looking for people who trust in him. He opens the way to heaven to those who trust in him. However, those who want to “push Jesus off the cliff”, or condemn him, throw themselves into misfortune.

Those who trust the Lord Jesus Christ have a future with God! A future that leaves death behind. The apostle Paul talks in his letters about what we as Christians can expect. He writes: “So it is written: »The first man, Adam, became only a living being, however the last Adam – Jesus Christ – was  fulfilled with a life-providing spirit. This spirit did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. Adam, the first man was created out of dust of the earth; however the new man, Jesus Christ comes from heaven.  As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the heavenly man, so are those who are of heaven. And just as we are descendants of Adam, we are created similar to his image. But one day we will bear the image of the heavenly man.”(1 Corinthians 15, 45  - 49).

In looking forward to this, I ask you to rejoice with me! 

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© 2020 Hans-Peter Nann, Frankfurt am Main