Bethlehem • Devotion #6: Rejected by Brothers

Even though the Messiah (Jesus) would be from the line of David and establish the throne of David forever, it was prophesied that He would be rejected by His brothers. 

Psalm 69:6-8 says that the Messiah would be treated like a “stranger” and an “alien” (foreigner, not family), “Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord God of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. For it is for your sake that I have borne reproach, that dishonor has covered my face. I have become a stranger to my brothers, an alien to my mother’s sons.”

John 7:1-5 shows that His brothers knew Jesus was special but did not yet believe in Him, “After this Jesus went about in Galilee. He would not go about in Judea, because the Jews were seeking to kill him. Now the Jews’ Feast of Booths was at hand. So his brothers said to him, ‘Leave here and go to Judea, that your disciples also may see the works you are doing. For no one works in secret if he seeks to be known openly. If you do these things, show yourself to the world.’ For not even his brothers believed in him.”

Mark 6:1-4 records that Jesus’ hometown (Nazareth) and relatives did not honor Him, “He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, ‘Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?’ And they took offense at him. And Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.’”

Jesus being rejected fulfilled prophecy.

It is horrible to realize that friends and relatives will reject us because we choose to follow Jesus. However, it is encouraging to know that James, the brother of Jesus, placed his faith in his brother (Jesus) after the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. There is hope.

They rejected Jesus. They may reject us because of Jesus.

Some of Jesus’ brothers repented later. There is hope.

Galatians 6:9 says, “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” 

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