Jesus’ Mission on Earth
Key Verse: “He began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.”
AFTER DEPARTING FROM the wilderness where he abode following his baptism, Jesus, with the power of the Holy Spirit, commenced his public ministry, teaching in the synagogues regarding the kingdom of God. Later when he arrived in Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he also went into a synagogue on the Sabbath and read a portion of Scripture from the book of Isaiah the prophet.—Luke 4:14-17
“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, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.”—vss. 18,19
After Jesus read these words from Isaiah, the account says that he closed the book and sat down, with the eyes of all gathered there fastened on him. (vs. 20) Our Key Verse then states the Master affirmed the passage he read was fulfilled at that very time and in the hearing of those in the audience.
The initial reaction to our Lord’s words was that of admiration, as his hearers recognized his expressions were filled with grace. (vs. 22) However, as he continued to speak, his utterances rebuked their unrighteousness, and their former attitude of praise towards him turned to wrath, because he would not perform any of his miracles “in his own country.” (vss. 23,24) They then sought to throw him over a cliff, but he passed through them unharmed before departing for another location.—vss. 28-30
By the end of Jesus’ ministry, he had been fully consumed in the doing of God’s will. Although rejected by the scribes, Pharisees, and Sadducees, the Master was well received by the common people, who heard him gladly. He healed the sick, cast out demons, and fed the multitudes—on one occasion five thousand and in another instance four thousand. Nevertheless, despite all of this marvelous testimony, he knew that the time of his earthly departure was near. Our Lord began to give some truths that were extremely powerful, and which indicated that he was seeking only those who would desire to follow him at any cost, with the prospect of being associated with him in his Father’s kingdom.—John 6:56-68
As believers, we also have a mission to promote the kingdom message. (Matt. 24:14) Let us fulfill our commission as we witness to God’s plan, in the hope of being used as an instrument to locate the remaining members of the body of Christ. The following prophetic testimony might well be used as a guide for our actions at this time: “And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate.” (Isa. 6:9-11) What a blessed privilege is ours!