Nathanael said to him, “Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.”
Jesus and His movement originated some of the most foundational ideas of our western civilization. One ideal we hold true in western culture is taking care of the weak instead of exploiting the weak. This is not from Rome. It’s from Nazareth. In fact, in the world of Rome, children typically didn’t get named until the eighth day or so. Up until then there was as a chance that the infant would be killed or left to die of exposure, especially if it was deformed or of the unpreferred gender. But the legacy of this nobody from Nazareth is different.
On April 21, 2014, 36,000 runners ran the Boston Marathon. While many of the news stories highlighted the one-year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing, there was another story that also got a lot of play. It’s the story of Team Hoyt. Dick Hoyt and his son Rick ran their 32nd and final Boston Marathon. When Dick’s son Rick was born, the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck. He was brain-damaged. He’d never be able to walk or speak, much less run a marathon. In ancient Rome, he would have been discarded. But in the wake of the message of Jesus from Nazareth, as people watched the footage of Team Hoyt crossing the finish line for the 32nd and final time, tears streamed down the face of Christians and non-Christians alike. Rick’s life is worth something regardless of whether he was actually running or being pushed in a custom-made wheelchair. Friends, that doesn’t happen with the message from Rome. That only happens with the message from Nazareth.
Can anything good come from Nazareth? Come and see. Come and see.