May 23


"God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and... he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him" (Acts 10:38, NIV).

The title, "Jesus of Nazareth" identifies Jesus with the obscure Galilean town in which He grew up and worked as a carpenter. The obscurity and unimportance of the little town is evident from Nathanael's contemptuous remark, "Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?" (John 1:46, NIV). However, Jesus' association with Nazareth changed its identity forever.

This title, "Jesus of Nazareth," occurs seventeen times in the four Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles. In his discourse in the house of Cornelius, Peter wanted to establish that Jesus was indeed the promised Messiah. He declared that Jesus' disciples were all eyewitnesses of His messiahship (see Acts 10:39-43).

In His discourse, Peter cited four specifics of Christ's ministry that identify Him as the Messiah. Peter began with Jesus' historical identity by referring to Him as "Jesus of Nazareth" (verse 38). He further informed his hearers that this Jesus of Nazareth officially became the Messiah by the anointing of the Holy Spirit at His baptism in Jordan (see Matthew 3:16, 17). He also reminded them that this Jesus of Nazareth "went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil" (Acts 10:38, NIV). Finally, Peter declared that the mighty works of Jesus were "because God was with Him" (verse 38).

With the apostle, we too are eye witnesses that Jesus of Nazareth is indeed the promised Messiah and the Saviour of the world. Referring to this title, Ellen G. White wrote: "Jesus of Nazareth did not dazzle the senses with a display of outward glory... He came as a humble man to be the Teacher and Exemplar as well as the Redeemer of the race."--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, p. 253.

My Prayer Today: Lord, I recognize You as Jesus of Nazareth who went about doing good. Help me to join You in Your good-will mission. Amen.