What does Mark 6:4 mean?This is the first time Jesus is described as a prophet in Mark. "Prophet" comes from the Greek root word profetes and refers to someone who receives revelations from God for others. In the Old Testament, prophets gave messages to kings and nations. The messages would either lead people to salvation or explain why God was about to punish them.
The quote about a prophet being disrespected in his hometown is originally attributed to a Greek proverb regarding their philosophers. Sadly, it is true for Jewish prophets, as well. Evil Queen Jezebel killed several prophets (1 Kings 18:4) and tried to kill Elijah (1 Kings 19:1–2). Jeremiah was thrown into a cistern (Jeremiah 38:6).
Today, the claimed title of "prophet" has taken an unbiblical turn. Some "prophets" claim to know the future, such as when Jesus will return. Scripture clearly states this is impossible (Matthew 24:36–44). The Bible also says that if any prophet claims to have a message from God but the message does not come true, they are a false prophet (Deuteronomy 18:22). We should pay no mind to those who say they know the future but turn out to be wrong.
Some churches claim to have prophets that have direct messages from God for individuals or churches. It is possible that God may give insight about another's situation, but it is unlikely. The practice of asserting a church leader is a prophet with a message from God giving directions for specific people is not biblical. The office and spiritual gift of prophecy became obsolete when the Bible was completed.
The response of the Nazarenes should serve as a warning. Many today grow up with an image of Jesus developed through church, Sunday School, or family, which isn't quite complete. We need to see Jesus as He is, going deeper than comfortable Bible stories. He is our shepherd (John 10:11, 14), friend (John 15:15), and savior (Matthew 1:21), but He is also our judge (Acts 10:42), king (Revelation 19:16), and God (John 1:1; Hebrews 1:3). We lose integrity and consistency in our faith when we simplify who Jesus is.