Today’s scripture lessons all point to the truth that our Christian faith calls us to make a choice to live by a different and higher standard than the rest of the world. In Luke’s Gospel, immediately before his Sermon on the Plain, Jesus had chosen the 12 he wanted to be his disciples. He gave this teaching to them – to his inner circle – about the choice they would need to make. It was an age-old choice.
Jesus knew that the people of Nazareth would not accept the idea of him teaching and healing anywhere except to the Israelites. They were very comfortable with their heritage as children of Abraham and the people of God. They were offended by the idea that this was not an exclusive status with God. Jesus was declaring that he would speak about God to anybody who would listen.