My Pondering from Luke 4:16-21
16When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures.17The scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where this was written:
18“The Spirit of the Lordis upon me,
for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released,
that the blind will see,
that the oppressed will be set free,
19and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come]”
20He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. All eyes in the synagogue looked at him intently.21Then he began to speak to them.“The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!” (Luke 4:16-21 NLT) We’ll know God has really done something remarkable in us when we long for his freedom for others, even for those whose bondage has splattered all over us.
The first “sermon” from Jesus in the book of Luke is straight and to the point, he simply reads the scriptures, those words from Isaiah that offer freedom to EVERYONE. I’ve been pondering what everyone means these last few days.
Jesus is speaking here of freedom from bondage. That’s what he came to do, set people free. I want that, for me and for those I love. The problem is Jesus took it a step further; he left out a few words from his reading of Isaiah. When he quoted Isaiah 61 he left out the part that speaks of vengeance taken on evildoers.
I’m not sure I like his omission so much.
Jesus’ offer for freedom is for everyone. I’ve been pondering that a lot. Objectively I accept it but the reality of it is harder.
– A woman is freed from the bondage of her sexual abuse. But do I want that freedom extended to her perpetrator?
– A friend betrays. I want freedom from the bondage of bitterness but do I want that freedom for the betrayer?
– A man flies a plane into the World Trade Center. I want freedom from the bondage of pain for the victims and their families but do I want that freedom for the person behind the airplanes controls?
I am so overwhelmingly grateful for freedom from those things keeping me in bondage but I don’t’ want Jesus’ astonishingly, overwhelming, generous grace handed so freely to those I don’t like.
Lord make me a woman who extends your freedom to all people, even those I can’t stand