1. Exposition

Why could Jesus not do any miracles in Nazareth?

Mark 6:5 (ESV)

5 And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them.

It was not because he did not have power. We have already seen in Mark 4:35–5:43 that Jesus has the power to control creation, to cast out demons, to heal the sick and even to bring someone back from the dead. Jesus being God incarnate is able to bring about any mighty work. Indeed, the text indicates that some of the people were indeed healed.

The description of Jesus being unable to do mighty works is definitely prominent in comparison with the parallel accounts in the other Gospels (see Matthew 13:58).

The key to this verse lies not in the seeming lack of power in Jesus but rather the lack of faith in those who listened to him (see Mark 6:6). The parallel account in Matthew also states that this was the reason that Jesus did not do the mighty works. Furthermore, it is a general theme especially throughout the Gospel of Mark that faith and miracles are closely connected with one another (see Mark 2:5, Mark 5:34–36, Mark 9:23–24, Mark 10:52, Mark 11:22–24).

The main reason Jesus is not able to do many miracles in Nazareth is because the people ignore him. In other towns, the people brought all their sick and demon-possessed to Jesus or they came to him themselves for help (e.g., Mark 1:32–34, Mark 1:40; Mark 2:3–4; Mark 3:8–11; Mark 5:6, Mark 5:22–23, Mark 5:27–28). If someone does not have faith to come to Jesus for help, then they are not helped by Jesus. In Nazareth, only a very few sick people are brought to him to be healed. If people ignore Jesus and stay away from him, they are not helped by him.