Home >> The Importance of Nazareth
 



 


 


 
 




Nazareth is located between the open space of the Jezreel valley and the mountainous regions of the Galilee.The valley and its history were well known to the Jews of Nazareth in the time of Jesus.During the first 20 years of his life spent in Nazareth, Jesus had many an opportunity to walk on the mountain ranges, to look over and think about the history of his people. The great battles that had taken place in the valley, together with the great hopes that were dashed with their losses, must have affected and shaped his view on life.


 


The valley of Jezreel, as it is seen from Nazareth, is a natural battlefield. This fact must have influenced the idea of "all the holders of swords shall fall by the sword," (Matthew 28:52).Another geographical area adjacent to Nazareth was the lower Galilee and the Beti Netofa valley.In this region there were many small Jewish villages and towns settled by Hellenized Syrians. The largest of these towns was Tzippori, the capital of the Galilee until the year IS BC. Even though Tzippori is a 45 minute - walk from Nazareth, the town is not mentioned in the New Testament


 


The main events in Jesus's life, as described in the New Testament, are the annunciation of his birth (Luke 1: 26-3 8), his childhood and early manhood (Luke 2:39-52, Matthew 2:19-23), and the clash with his fellow citizens (Matthew 13:5458, Luke 4:17-30).From the very first events relating to the life of Jesus in Nazareth, we learn that the people of his village did not approve of his thinking and behavior.To them he was Jesus, one of the sons of Joseph the carpenter (the other brothers were James, Joseph, Simeon and Judah Matthew 13:55).Luke describes with great drama how Jesus was rejected by the people of Nazareth.


 


Nazareth is also holy to Christians because it throws light on the holy family, especially Mary, the mother of Jesus.This is the place where a Christian believer can consider Mary's qualities, Her character as a noble woman, a woman of purity, simplicity, sensitivity and pureness of heart.Mary is portrayed as a mother who devotes herself to the education of her son and remains devoted to him in the most tiring of circumstances (she was present at his crucifixion - John 19:25 - and recognized him as the messiah - Acts 2:36).For Catholics, Mary has a special significance - and her special place in the New Testament is hinted at in the verses "Blessed art though of women" (Luke 1:41) and "Peace unto thee woman of grace, God be with you" (Luke 1:28).