Jesus' Final Visit to Capernaum
(Late Dec. 29 A.D. to Feb. 30 A.D.)

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Topics covered: Jesus and the disciples travel to Jerusalem for Hanukkah, the Jews attempt to stone Christ for claiming He is God, the Lord travels through Perea and makes a final visit to his hometown of Capernaum where the Jews try to entrap him

Jesus gives several parables like the lost sheep, the prodigal son and others, ten lepers are healed at the same time, the parable of the unjust judge and the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector are also given.

Primary scriptures: Luke 14:1 - 35, 15:1 - 32, 16:1 - 31, 17:1 - 37, 18:1 - 14, John 10:39 - 42.

Festival of Lights
December 18 - 26, 29 A.D.

Claiming to be God

Jesus and the disciples are in Jerusalem for Hanukkah (Festival of Lights) which runs from sunset December 18 to sunset on the 26th (John 10:22 - 39). During the celebration, after stating he and God the Father were "one," the Jews take up stones to kill him for blasphemy.

Then the Jews again (see John 8:59) picked up stones so that they might stone Him. Jesus answered them, "Many good works I have showed you from My Father. For which of them are you about to stone Me?"

The Jews answered Him, saying, "We will not stone You for a good work, but for blasphemy, and because You, being a man, are making Yourself God." (John 10:31 - 33).

The Jews fully understand that any individual claiming they were "one" with God, or stating that He was their Father (see John 5:18), meant that they were making themselves equal with the Eternal. Such declarations, in their minds, was the highest blasphemy and worthy of the death penalty. This is one of the rare times the Jews acted on their hatred of Jesus to the point of attempting to immediately kill him (see Luke 4:25 - 30).

Jesus, not wanting to be arrested by the Jews, escapes Jerusalem and travels to the eastern side of the Jordan River (John 10:39 - 40). He then travels north, through Perea, to where John the Baptist first began to baptize.

Then they (Jews attending the Festival of Lights in Jerusalem) again sought to take Him; but He escaped out of their hands, and departed again beyond Jordan to the place where John was first baptizing; and He remained there (John 10:39 - 40).

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January to
February 30 A.D.

Entrapment at Capernaum

Jesus, after staying a short time in Bethabara, crosses over to the western side of the Jordan River and journeys to Capernaum. This will be his last visit to his adopted hometown before the crucifixion.

On the weekly Sabbath day Jesus is invited to eat at the house of a Pharisee where other religious leaders are also in attendance. The invitation, however, is not what it seems. It is the perfect setting in which to entrap Christ, to see if he, among witnesses, does anything worthy of condemnation.

Now it came to pass, when He went into a house of one of the rulers of the Pharisees on the Sabbath to eat bread, that they were watching Him (Luke 14:1).

A man with dropsy appears and stands in front of Christ while everyone is finding their place to sit. Those in attendance are then asked the following rhetorical question.

Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath? (Luke 14:3).

No one answers the Lord's question. He then heals the man with dropsy (Luke 4:1 - 6).

Jesus then notices how those in attendance scrambled to claim the places of honor, nearest the host, in which to sit. He then informs the guests it is far better to be humble and have others exalt you than seeking to exalt yourself (Luke 14:7 - 11). He then admonishes the host of the meal to pursue true glory by inviting the poor, the sick and the handicapped for meals.

When you make a dinner or supper, do not call your friends, nor your brethren, nor your relatives, nor rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return, and a recompense be made to you.

But when you make a feast, call the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind; And you shall be blessed, for they do not have the means to repay you. But you shall be recompensed at the resurrection of the just (Luke 14:12 - 14).

Jesus' admonishment stated above is followed up by the parable of the great supper (Luke 14:16 - 24).

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More Parables

Luke 14:25 is possibly the point in the timeline of Jesus' life and ministry where he leaves Capernaum for the last time. The verses states that "great multitudes were going with Him . . ." This could only happen if he were traveling and not at home.

The Lord teaches the huge crowd following him that those who follow him must place a relationship with him as their highest priority (Luke 14:25 - 35). He also gives several well-known parables such as those concerning lost sheep (15:1 - 7), a lost coin (verses 8 - 10), a prodigal son (11 - 32), and an unjust steward (Luke 16:1 - 9).

Christ then boldly proclaims that no one can fully serve both God and mammon (money, possessions).

No servant is able to serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and he will love the other; or he will hold to the one and will despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (Luke 16:13).

He reiterates his point by offering the parable of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:14 - 31). He then continues his discourse by warning against offending new believers (17:1 - 2), admonishing his disciples to seek to forgive (verses 3 - 4), and answering a question regarding how faith can be increased (Luke 17:5 - 6). He then closes by encouraging his disciples to go above and beyond what is expected of them (verses 7 to 10).

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Heading South

Jesus and his disciples leave Galilee, pass near Nazareth, and then continue their journey by going south through the middle of Samaria (Luke 17:11). They soon arrive in an unnamed village where ten men with leprosy cry out to be healed.

The Lord, hearing the pleas of the lepers, commands the group show themselves to the priests. The lepers, as they are walking way, are surprised to find they are miraculously cured! Sadly, only one of them, a Samaritan (a non-Israelite), returns to thank him for aleviating his suffering.

And they (the ten leprous men) lifted up their voices, saying, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!" And when He saw them, He said to them, "Go show yourselves to the priests." And it came to pass that while they were going, they were cleansed.

Then one of them, seeing that he was healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice. . . Jesus said, "Were not ten cleansed? But where are the other nine? Are not any found returning to give glory to God except this stranger?" (Luke 17:13 - 15, 17 - 18).

Jesus, as his continues his journey, warns that his Second Coming will come suddenly upon the world (Luke 17:24 - 25). He states that before his arrival people will be living their normal lives just as they did before the Flood and before the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (verses 26 - 33). His discourse ends with the parables of the unjust judge and the Pharisee and the tax collector (Luke 18:1 - 14).

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Previous    -    Next

Timeline of Jesus' Life and Ministry
Conception and Birth of Jesus
Christ's Early Life
Baptism and Temptation
The First Miracle at Cana
Jesus Reveals He Is the Messiah
The Sermon on the Mount
Confronting Religious Leaders
Preaching, Parables and Miracles
Miraculously Feeding the Masses
The Transfiguration
Training the Disciples for Evangelism
A Final Visit to Capernaum
The Last Trips Before Crucifixion
Jesus' Last Days, Death, Resurrection
Christ's Ministry after His Resurrection