"THE GOSPEL OF MARK" When Familiarity Breeds Contempt (6:1-6) INTRODUCTION 1. You have likely heard the saying "familiarity breeds contempt", which means... a. The better we know people, the more likely we are to find fault with them. - The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy b. If you know someone very well or experience something a lot, you stop respecting them. - The Free Dictionary c. The more you know something or someone, the more you start to find faults and dislike things about it or them. - UsingEnglish.com 2. We find an example of this in our text... a. When Jesus returned to His hometown - Mk 6:1-6 b. The town of Nazareth, where He had been brought up - cf. Lk 4:16-24 [As illustrated in our text, allowing familiarity to breed contempt can be to one's disadvantage. For example, "When Familiarity Breeds Contempt"...] I. THE MESSAGE IS NOT RECEIVED A. JESUS' COUNTRYMEN TOOK OFFENSE... 1. At first they were impressed by His teaching - Mk 6:2; cf. Lk4:22 2. The people of Nazareth knew Jesus as: a. A carpenter and the son of a carpenter - Mk 6:3; cf. Mt13:55 b. The son of Mary, with brothers and sisters - Mk 6:3 3. But the moment He spoke critically, they took offense - Mk 6:3 a. They became angry - cf. Lk 4:23-28 b. They attempted to kill Him - cf. Lk 4:29-30 4. Which led Jesus say: "A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household." - Mk 6:4 -- Because of familiarity, they did not respect Him as a prophet B. JESUS LIMITED HIS TEACHING... 1. Their offense led to His leaving and returning to Capernaum - cf. Lk 4:31 2. Thus depriving themselves of further teaching by the Son of God! 3. Remember what Jesus had told His disciples earlier?
- cf. Mk 4:23-25 -- Because of their contempt, they lost access to more learning of God's will! C. MIGHT WE BE GUILTY OF THE SAME...? 1. We can easily develop familiarity today a. With those teaching the Word of God ("He no longer impresses me") b. With the message of the Word itself ("I've heard that many times before") 2. Do we allow our familiarity to breed contempt? a. No longer respecting those we know well, taking them for granted? b. No longer appreciating the significance of the Word of God? -- If so, then we will cut ourselves off from its powerful message! [Which leads to another disadvantage experienced "When Familiarity Breeds Contempt"...] II. THE BLESSINGS ARE NOT RECEIVED A. JESUS' COUNTRYMEN DID NOT BELIEVE... 1. Which caused Jesus to marvel - Mk 6:6 2. Remember, they even tried to kill Him - cf. Lk 4:28-30 -- Because of familiarity they were unwilling to believe in Him B. JESUS LIMITED HIS MIRACLES... 1. Mark states that "He could do no mighty work there..." - Mk 6:5 2. Matthew says it was "because of their unbelief" - cf. Mt 13:58 3. It wasn't that Jesus could not do miracles, for He healed a few - Mk 6:5 4. Where people would not believe, He could not do a great work for them 5. "Such unbelief as this has immense consequences for evil. It closes the channels of grace and mercy, so that only a trickle gets through to human lives in need." - J. G. Miller -- Because of their contempt, they lost access to receiving more blessings! C. MIGHT WE EXPERIENCE THE SAME...? 1. We can easily develop familiarity and contempt toward such things as: a. Baptism, the Lord's Supper, the Word of God, prayer, assembling b. Even the blood of Christ, counting it as "a common thing" - cf. He 10:29 2. Such contempt will "close the channels of grace and mercy", for we will not: a. Emphasize the importance of baptism for the remission of sins - Ac 2:38; 22:16 b. Value the observance of the Lord Supper as a communion with Christ - 1Co 10:16 c. Feed on the Word of God that we might grow thereby - 1Pe 2:2 d. Utilize prayer in order to receive mercy, grace, peace
- He 4:14-16; Php 4:6-7 e. Assemble as often as we can, to stir up love and good works - He 10:24-25 -- Could contempt bred by familiarity explain our dull spiritual lives? CONCLUSION 1. When the people of Nazareth allowed their familiarity with Jesus to breed contempt... a. They deprived themselves of a great opportunity b. Jesus chose to take His message and His blessings elsewhere - Mk6:6 2. A similar tragedy can befall us... a. We can judge ourselves unworthy of eternal life b. And thus deprive ourselves of blessings we would otherwise receive - cf. Ac 13:46 The secret is to pay close attention to the words of Jesus and His apostles, and any familiarity will produce only greater blessings and not contempt (and prayer will certainly help)... Then He said to them, "Take heed what you hear. With the same measure you use, it will be measured to you; and to you who hear, more will be given." - Mk 4:24 Open my eyes, that I may see Wondrous things from Your law. - Psa 119:18