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Thursday, June 30 2011

The Hill Of Nazareth

Nazareth is one of the oldest and most famous cities of Galilee. Located about half-way between the Mediterranean Sea to the west and the Sea of Galilee to the east, Nazareth is built along a hill (as shown in the photograph below) that extends upward from about 1,000 to 1,600 feet above sea level.

Galilee While Joseph and Mary were from Nazareth ("1:26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 1:27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary" Luke 1:26-27 KJV), their ancestry was in the south, in Bethlehem ("2:4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; because he was of the house and lineage of David: 2:5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child" Luke 2:4 KJV).

After the birth of the Messiah in Bethlehem, the family first fled to Egypt (see What Happened At Night?) to escape the attempt by Herod to murder the Christ. After the death of Herod (see Whatever Happened To Those Romans?), they returned to Nazareth, not merely by happenstance, but so "that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene."

"2:13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.

2:14 When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt: 2:15 And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.

2:16 Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men. 2:17 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying,

2:18 In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.

2:19 But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, 2:20 Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child's life.

2:21 And he arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel. 2:22 But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee: 2:23 And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene." (Matthew 3:13-23 KJV)

They "thrust Him out of the city, and led Him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast Him down headlong"

So it was that the Messiah lived in Nazareth from early childhood until about age 30, when His ministry began. Matthew records that the Christ left Nazareth and went to live in Capernaum, on the north shore of the Sea of Galilee, when He began to preach - which was immediately after His confrontation with the Devil.

Nazareth

"4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungered. 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

4:5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, 4:6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.

4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

4:12 Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee; 4:13 And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim: 4:14 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying,

4:15 The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; 4:16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.

4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." (Matthew 4:1-17 KJV)

Luke also recorded the same event, but includes the specific circumstances under which the Christ left Nazareth. "Filled with wrath" in response to what He spoke while reading the Holy Scriptures in the synagogue (see The By-The-Book Messiah and Was Jesus A 'New Testament' Christian?), they "thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong." As with Bethlehem, the city of His birth, the Messiah was forced to leave Nazareth because of people who sought to murder Him.

"4:13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.

4:14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about. 4:15 And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all.

4:16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. 4:17 And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,

4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, 4:19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.

4:20 And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him. 4:21 And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.

4:22 And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth. And they said, Is not this Joseph's son?

4:23 And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.

4:24 And he said, Verily, I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country. 4:25 But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land; 4:26 But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow. 4:27 And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian.

4:28 And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, 4:29 And rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong. 4:30 But he passing through the midst of them went his way,

4:31 And came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and taught them on the sabbath days. 4:32 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power." (Luke 4:13-32 KJV)

Fact Finder: Why was the Messiah known as "the prophet of Galilee"?
See The Prophet Of Galilee


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This Day In History, June 30

350: Nepotianus, of the Constantinian dynasty, was defeated and killed by the forces of Magnentius.

1097: The Crusaders defeated the Turks at Dorylaeum.

1422: The Battle of Arbedo between the forces of the duke of Milan and the Swiss cantons.

1520: Montezuma II, the last Aztec emperor, was killed during the Spanish conquest of Mexico.

1548: The Augsburg Interim, a temporary doctrinal agreement between German Catholics and Protestants, proclaimed in May 1548 at The Diet of Augsburg, became imperial law.

1643: The Battle of Adwalton Moor (also called Atherton Moor) in the English Civil War took place. The Royalists under the Earl of Newcastle defeated the Parliamentarians.

1690: In the War of the Grand Alliance, a combined British and Dutch fleet fought the French at the Battle of Beachy Head.

1859: Watched by 25,000 people, Charles Blondin walked across Niagara Falls from the United States to Canada on a tightrope.

1886: The first transcontinental train trip across Canada began from Montreal.

1894: London's Tower Bridge across the River Thames was officially opened.

1894: Korea declared independence from China.

1908: The "Tunguska Event" - an explosion equivalent to a 10 megaton hydrogen bomb erupted in the sky above the Tunguska River in central Siberia. With a great roar, the shock wave flattened trees over an area of several thousand square kilometers. No one was killed in the uninhabited area, although a man standing 40 miles away was knocked down unconscious by the shock wave. Seismometers around the world recorded it. The event is believed to have been caused by a comet or asteroid that shattered and exploded about 5 miles above the earth's surface.

1963: Cardinal Giovanni Battista Montini was enthroned as Pope Paul VI.

1971: The three crew members of the Soviet spacecraft Soyuz II died on re-entry due to a drop in air pressure. They had just set a space endurance record of 570 hours, 22 minutes.

1974: Mrs. Alberta King and a church deacon were slain by a gunman in Atlanta Ebenezer Baptist Church where her son, the assassinated civil rights leader Martin Luther King, once preached.

1984: John Turner was sworn in as Canada's 17th Prime Minister.

1990: East and West Germany merged their economies, with the East adopting the Deutschemark as its currency.

1994: Following months of negotiations to ensure protection for Jerusalem's Roman Catholic shrines, the decision was reached to exchange ambassadors between Israel and the Vatican.

1997: Britain ended 156 years of colonial rule in Hong Kong by turning control of the colony (it was the 68th colony that Britain relinquished in the 20th century alone) over to communist China. Six hours after the handover, China sent in 4,000 troops by ship, helicopter and armored vehicles.






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