All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove (Jesus) out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way. Luke 4:29-30
The gospel of Luke has an intriguing passage about Jesus. He had just finished reading these words from the scroll of Isaiah:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Luke 4:18-19
At that moment everyone was praising him, thinking of how the hometown boy was making good. Then Jesus said something about other people getting miracles, not the people of Israel. They are incensed and try to kill him.
The text makes me think about the much maligned Anthony Fauci, Doctor, scientist, and healer. He has been the nation’s authority on Covid 19. Thrust into the spotlight with the arrival of Covid in 2020, he has offered his professional guidance. At the age of Eighty-one, he continues to actively promote messages to bring healing to the nation. But, in the past year, he has become the person that some people love to hate. He is publicly reprimanded when he meets with Congress, by Rand Paul. He is mocked on Social media and demonized by Fox news opinion hosts. There are those who blame him as the sources of the pandemic, and not the one who is doing all in his power to stop it. Death threats follow not only him, but his family.
I think of what that must do to a person, who has given his life for the healing of a nation. How painful it must be, after a career in public service, to become the scapegoat of so many people. I think how hard is has to be to forgive those who taunt him and put his life in jeopardy. I think of what kind of grace it takes, to speak kindly to politicians who have no kind words for him. I think of how tired he must be of speaking truth to those who do not want to hear it.
Then, I think of Jesus, whose ratings went from 100 percent to zero, after speaking truth at the synagogue in Nazareth. I remember how Jesus was able to walk through the mob, set on killing him that day. I pray that Dr. Fauci is able to continue to walk through today’s mob, to safety and his own place of healing.