This Week's Story

The former neighbors of Jesus argue about who he is.

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

He's only the carpenter.

“I heard that Jesus arrived yesterday! He’s home in Nazareth and he’s at the synagogue. I want to see him. Come with me.”

As the two young men entered the synagogue service, they saw an audience of eyes staring curiously at Jesus. He stood in front of his hometown people, looking calm and comfortable.

“He must have just finished reading from the Prophets or the Torah.”

“Let’s listen to him explain what he read.”

As Jesus taught, faces throughout the room began changing. Wrinkles became question marks, jaws dropped, and mouths opened with no words.

When he stopped, words shot from many mouths. Some of his former neighbors and friends attacked him with questions.

“How can you explain the Torah? You have no special training

from the teachers.”

“Where do you get your wisdom?”

“You’re one of us. For sure, you’re no better!”

“We hear you healed a man with leprosy.”

“I grew up next door to you. I know you. You can’t fool me.”

A soft voice said, “Maybe you don’t know him.”

“His father Joseph trained him to be a carpenter in Nazareth. That’s what he is. He has no other skills.”

“Why he doesn’t stay home? He travels throughout Judea and Galilee and crowds follow him.”

“I’ve known his family all my life. His sisters live here in Nazareth.”

“Maybe we’re judging him wrongly. Let’s talk to the men who came with him. They say that they saw him stop the storm on the Sea of Galilee. Three of them claim he raised the daughter of a synagogue leader from the dead.”

A voice began ranting.

“He offends me. Get him out of here! Get him out of here!!”

Jesus spoke to them. “A prophet is respected and given honor everywhere except in his hometown and among his family and relatives.

Something struggled on his face. Was it surprise and sadness?

A few days passed. Nothing much happened in Nazareth. Jesus healed a few sick people. The town was gripped with its unbelief. Because of it, Jesus did not do mighty miracles among his own people.

When he left Nazareth, he continued travelling and teaching. He told his disciples to go two by two to towns. He gave them strange and specific orders. “Take no food, suitcase, or money with you. Wear shoes, but don’t take an extra pair with you. When you are in a town, stay overnight in only one home. If people will not welcome you or listen to you, leave them to their fate.”

The disciples went to many people. They took a message: Turn from your sins. They cast out demons and healed many people. When they returned from their work tour, they reported to Jesus what they had done and taught.

He said, “Let’s get away from the crowds for a while. We need time to rest.” They got into a boat to cross the Sea of Galilee. Immediately people ran along the shore. Two hours later when Jesus and his disciples landed on the far shore, a vast crowd was waiting. Jesus looked at the people with concern and compassion. He began teaching them.

This is Barbara Steiner with a biblical record of belief and skepticism as recorded in Mark.

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