He shall be called a Nazorean


Jesus was known to be “Jesus of Nazareth” during the course of his public ministry. He grew up in Nazareth. After his family’s sojourn in Egypt, Joseph decided to settle down in this obscure village in Galilee. Matthew describes the event as the fulfillment of what the prophets foretold. However, the town of Nazareth is never mentioned in the Old Testament. What Matthew must have put in his description is the one found in Isaiah: “a bud shall blossom,” referring to the future Davidic king (11:1). The Hebrew root n-ts-r means “bud” or “branch.” Nonetheless, more than Jesus’ identification as a Nazorean, is his being situated in the context of a family, together with Mary and Joseph. The family is where one grows. And if the branch has “to bear fruit” (yipreh), the family has a crucial role to play.

Gospel • Matthew 2:13-15, 19-23
When the magi had departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.” Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt. He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, Out of Egypt I called my son. When Herod had died, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead.” He rose, took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go back there. And because he had been warned in a dream, he departed for the region of Galilee. He went and dwelt in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, He shall be called a Nazorean.

Source: “365 Days with the Lord 2022,” St. Paul's, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 632-895-9701; Fax 632-895-7328; E-mail: publishing@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.