On one Sabbath Day at Nazareth, Lord Jesus claimed for Himself the fulfilment of the prophecy of Isaiah: "The spirit of the Lord is upon Me because he has anointed Me to preach, to heal and to set at liberty." This greatly enraged the congregation at the synagogue. Though the Lord had been recognised as the Son of God, as a Prophet, and as the Light of the World, by others, to the people of Nazareth, Jesus was but the son of a carpenter! These unfortunate people drove Jesus out of Nazareth. Said the Lord: "In his own country, a prophet has no honour."
Jesus then went over to Capernaum, along with His disciples. Crowds of people gathered around Him wherever He went; and He preached Real Religion to all of them. One day He saw Andrew and Peter cleaning their fishing nets. As usual a crowd had gathered around Him; and thus, sitting in Peter's boat, Lord Jesus preached His Gospel to the crowd. Then, He asked Peter to launch out into the deep and let down the nets. Peter had not much of a hope of catching any fish; but he obeyed the Lord. He caught such a lot of fish that he had to get the assistance of several other comrades, to drag the net up. Turning to them, Lord Jesus said: "Follow Me and I will make you fishers of men." They followed Him implicitly and became His chosen disciples.
His relatives had heard of His attitude and the strange gospel He preached, and also discovered that He was thus incurring the displeasure of the powers-that-be. They thought that He was beside Himself and wanted to persuade Him to give up this opposition to constituted authority. While He was preaching on the lake-side at Capernaum, His brothers and His mother went over there to meet Him. When He was told of their arrival there, He asked, "Who is my mother and my brethren?" and answered it Himself: "Behold my mother and my brethren," pointing to those who sat around him; "for, whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother and sister and mother,"thus granting the closest relationship with Him, to all mankind for all time to come.
Jesus's fame as the divine healer spread far and wide; and people came to Him from far and near to be healed of various ailments. One day, as He was preaching, at a synagogue in Capernaum, a man who had a fit of madness was brought to Him. Jesus rebuked the spirit of madness that possessed him and said, "silence! Come out of him." The man was healed.
Similarly Peter's mother-in-law was cured of a serious fever; and hundreds of others were healed by a mere touch of His Hand.
One day, seeing the vast multitude follow Him, He went up a hill and preached His famous "sermon on the Mount."
As He came down the mountain, a leper approached Him and prayed to Him for His Healing Grace. By a mere touch Lord Jesus cured him. A centurion approached Him and said that his servant was sick at home. Though, Lord Jesus promised to go to the centurion's house, the latter prayed sincerely, that He need not and that His mere wish would heal the ailing servant at home. Lord Jesus admired his faith and remarked: "I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel." He blessed the servant and, though he was physically far away, the servant was instantly healed.
Seeing the multitudes following Him wherever He went, Lord Jesus wanted to sail to the country of the Gergensenes. As he boarded the ship, a scribe wanted to go with Him. Lord Jesus turned to him and said: "The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man hath nowhere to lay his head." The Great Lord had no home of His own; but today every human heart is His Abodesuch is the glorious fruit of renunciation. He who would follow Him should similarly give up all attachment to the things of the world and renouncing all that is worldly, attain to Freedom.
Another, a disciple, wanted leave to bury his dead father. To him, the Lord said: "Follow me, let the dead bury their dead." That is His stirring call. "Follow Me," says He. Bestow no thought on the meaningless concerns of the world where people who are dead to an understanding of their real nature, weep over the death of and bury, those who are dead to the world. He who is alive to his real duty, will follow Him.
And, they got into the boat and sailed away. At night, a violent tempest raged over the sea and the boat was tossed over angry waves. The disciples were concerned lest the boat was tossed over angry waves. The disciples were concerned lest the boat should capsize. They went to the Lord and woke Him up. He smiled at their lack of faithhow could the boat with Him on board capsize?and commanded the tempest to stop. All was quiet immediately; and this greatly increased the faith of the disciples in Him"What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!" said they to one another.
When He returned to His own city once again, the people brought to him a man afflicted with palsy. The Lord pronounced His blessing upon him, saying: "son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee." "This is blasphemy," cried the scribes. But the Lord reaffirmed that He had the power on earth to forgive the sins of men and commanded the sick man to get up and walk home. Lo, the miracle happened and the man was healed.
Lord Jesus would frequently dine with the Pharisees and those whom the public regarded as sinners. The orthodox men of religion could not understand Him. He dispelled their doubts by His bold declaration: "They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. I will have mercy, and not sacrifice; for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
One day, a King came to the Lord and said to Him: "My daughter is dead; but I have the faith that if You come and touch her, she will live again." The Lord followed the ruler to his house; and another supreme miracle of faith took place on the way. A poor woman sorely afflicted with a disease which made her bleed profusely merely touched His garment as He walked along: and she was instantly healed. Later, when the Lord touched the King's daughter, she rose and came back to life.
Thus wherever He went, the Lord healed the sick, made the blind men see and deaf men hear again.
John the Baptist was assassinated. When Lord Jesus heard of it He boarded a ship and went to a desert. A crowd followed Him there, too. When evening came, the disciples found that they had only five loaves of bread and two fish; and there were about five thousand men and their families to partake of these! But, Lord Jesus offered a prayer to Heaven and broke the loaves and gave them all.
He asked His disciples to sail away from there and He Himself went into seclusion to pray. At the dead of night the disciples who were in the boat which had gone away from the shore watched with amazement Jesus walking over the water, towards them. They even thought it was a spirit. Peter said to the Lord: "If it is You, Lord, then make me also walk over the water." Jesus said: "Come," and Peter was able to walk over the sea. But on the way, Peter was frightened by the wind, and his faith shook; and he at once began to sink. Jesus held out His hand, saved him and said: "Oh ye of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?" He who had faith in the Lord could accomplish anything on earth.
A rich young ruler one day approached the Lord and asked: "Good Master, what should I do to inherit eternal life?" Lord Jesus replied: "You should keep the Commandments." "Oh yes," the young ruler replied: "and I have kept them since my childhood. What else should I do?" "There is one thing more," said Jesus, "and that is: sell all that you have and give to the poor. Then take up your Cross and follow me." At the very mention of this sacrifice and renunciation, the young ruler turned away and walked off. Lord Jesus remarked: "It is easier for a camel to enter the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God."