Jesus - A Nazorean?

When Jesus was still a baby, Mary and Joseph decided to move to the tiny Galilean farm town of Nazareth. Why? This village had no illustrious Biblical history, nor was it a rabbinic center of study. The Gospel of Matthew states that they “went to live in the town of Nazareth, so that what was spoken by the prophets might be fulfilled: that he would be called a Nazorean” (Mt 2:23). What is a Nazorean?

Triumph from Destruction

The key to answering these questions is in the Book of Isaiah, the greatest of the Hebrew prophets. Seven hundred years before Christ, Isaiah described the house of Judah as a great tree that would be chopped down to a stump, “A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit” (Isaiah 11:1). This refers to the Messiah.

Discover the Hebrew Roots of the Bible

In Biblical Hebrew, the word for “branch” is netzer נצר, which is also the root of Nazareth נצרת. When Matthew says that Jesus “would be called a Nazorean,” this does not refer to a Nazirite vow (Num 6), but to becoming the Messianic netzer. Only from Branch-town, could the Branch emerge. Enroll in our live online Biblical Hebrew courses and see the deep linguistic connections that forever tie together the Old and New Testaments