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Saturday, December 3 2011
The Messiah's Hometown Churches
The Hebrew word, pronounced moe-ade, means congregation or appointed time. The word is found over 200 times in the Hebrew Scriptures (i.e. the "Old Testament"), variously translated as congregation, appointed, time, feast, season, assembly, and once, in the King James Version, as synagogue:
"74:8 They said in their hearts, Let us destroy them together: they have burned up all the synagogues of God in the land. 74:9 We see not our signs: there is no more any prophet: neither is there among us any that knoweth how long." (Psalm 74:8-9 KJV)
In the New Testament, the Greek word, pronounced soon-ag-oh-gay, meaning an assembly of people, is translated as synagogue. Jesus Christ was an observant Jew (see also Who Were The First Jews?) - "observant" as in obeying God's Law in the way that God actually commanded, rather than merely in ways of man's traditions that came to replace the actual Law of God (see Did Jesus Break The Law?). As such, the Messiah attended His hometown synagogue in Nazareth, until His ministry began - when they violently rejected Him.
"4:14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee [see also The Prophet Of 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.
"The Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath Day"
The Messiah then moved from Nazareth, in the inland hill country, to Capernaum, a fishing town on the north shore of the Sea of Galilee. The Messiah's Ministry was just then beginning; the first apostles (who were fishermen on the nearby Sea of Galilee) were called not long after (see also The Ships Of Galilee).
"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.
The Messiah also preached in other synagogues, thereby making Him a popular Teacher throughout Galilee.
"9:35 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.
The Messiah healed people on the Sabbath, despite the protests of those who incorrectly regarded healings to be work (the Messiah never sinned - He never violated the Fourth Commandment; see The Way To Salvation: Step 4).
"12:8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.
So typical of petty human nature, people began to take offense at Him, while at the same time recognizing "hath this man this wisdom" and that He was doing "mighty works."
"13:54 And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works?
Fact Finder: Who built the first Christian Church?
This Day In History, December 3
1170: Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury, returned to Britain after six years of exile in France. He was killed on December 29 by soldiers sent by his former ally King Henry II.
1586: Sir Thomas Herriot introduced potatoes to England, from Columbia.
1621: Italian astronomer and mathematician Galileo Galilei (who the pope threatened to burn at the stake for correctly teaching that the earth orbits the sun, not the sun orbits the earth as the pope incorrectly proclaimed; see also No 'Flat Earth' In The Bible) perfected the telescope (see also Parabolic Prophecies).
1762: France transferred to Spain all territory west of the Mississippi - known as Upper Louisiana.
1800: During the War of The Second Coalition, 60,000 French under Moreau defeated 70,000 Austrians under Archduke John at the Battle of Hohenlinden in upper Bavaria.
1910: The neon lamp, developed by French physicist George Claude, was displayed for the first time at the Paris Motor show.
1912: An armistice was signed by Turkey, Bulgaria, Serbia and Montenegro, ending the First Balkan War.
1917: The United States declared war on Austria-Hungary during the First World War, 8 months after the U.S. declared war on Germany, and 3 years and 4 months after the war in Europe began (listen also to our Sermon The European World Wars).
1931: The Statute of Westminster was passed, under which British dominions gained complete legislative independence.
1967: A team of surgeons in Cape Town, South Africa, led by Dr. Christian Barnard, performed the first human heart transplant on Louis Washkansky, who lived for 18 days.
1970: British Trade Commissioner James Cross was released by the Front de Liberation du Quebec ("FLQ") terrorists in Montreal. Cross was kidnapped in October along with Quebec cabinet minister Pierre Laporte (Laporte was murdered). The FLQ sought to remove Quebec from Canada by means of violent revolution (see also Violence); the majority of the people of Quebec however democratically and peacefully chose for themselves to remain Canadian through repeated referendums in which Quebec voters, not criminals, decided the future of Quebec.
1984: Over 2,500 people were killed and thousands injured when deadly gas leaked from the Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India.