Small Voice Calling > The Call > Moved to Tears > Trees
The Song: Trees
Then he thought about his mother
And the stories she had told him
Who’d filled his dreams with angels
Put voices in his head
Then the scent of pine trees
Made him think of dear old Joseph
And that’s why Jesus wept
The Bible: Jesus of Nazareth
The Gospel according to Matthew, Chapter 2, Verses 19 to 23 (Matthew 2: 19 – 23),
The Gospel according to John, Chapter 1, Verses 43 to 51 (John 1: 43 – 51), and
The Gospel according to Matthew, Chapter 13, Verses 53 to 58 (Matthew 13: 53 – 58).
Nazareth nestles in the southernmost foothills of Mount Lebanon, which in ancient times was covered in great forests of oak and pine. The Phoenicians built their ships with wood from these forests, and King Solomon his Temple. It was a good place to ply one’s trade as a woodworker. All the Bible tells us about Joseph is that he was a carpenter in Nazareth and was married to Mary, the mother of Jesus.
So Jesus was brought up in Nazareth, which seems to have been a bit of joke in some quarters. When Philip told Nathanael that Jesus, son of Joseph, was from Nazareth, Nathanael sneered, ‘Can anything good come from Nazareth?’ Undeterred, Philip said, ‘Come and see’. Which he did.
Some time later, Jesus returned to Nazareth after a spell on the road, and taught in the synagogue there. The locals were initially impressed, but the sceptics said ‘Isn’t he the carpenter’s son? Doesn’t his family still live here? Who does he think he is?’ And his own townsfolk rejected him.
Yet a Samaritan woman recognised Jesus of Nazareth as ‘the Messiah’; Peter called him ‘the son of the living God’; the Jerusalem crowd hailed him as their ‘King’; and he identified himself as ‘Yahweh’.
An ancient Jewish prayer starts with the words, “Blessed are you, Yahweh our God, King of the universe…”
OK, but did Jesus restore the kingdom to Israel?
I was coming to that.
If these Bible stories are true, they reveal Jesus to be the King, not of the Jews only, but of Samaritans too, and of all the world, and beyond. The charge sheet pinned to his execution stake should have read ‘Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Universe’.
And we find ourselves standing with Peter, staring into an empty tomb, wondering what just happened.