“Only in his home town and in his own house is a prophet without honor.” (Matthew 13:57)

When Jesus had finished these parables, he moved on from there. Coming to his home town he began teaching the people in their synagogue, and they were amazed. Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers? They asked. Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t this mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Aren’t all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?” And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor except in his own town and in his own home." (Matt. 13:53-57)

Who is the 'prophet without honor'?

Because of their familiarity with Jesus, those with close physical or familiar proximity to Jesus were thinking he was an ordinary person. They saw Jesus as a peer. They did not see Jesus in his exalted position as they should have.

While we each have a physical body, and the messenger of God may also have a physical body, to compare the messenger of God (essentially a Prophet) to a normal person does not elevate our consciousness. It is offensive. It would be like not respecting an ambassador when he is traveling to a foreign country. Such an offense would ultimately offend the ambassador's government.

Jesus describes the "prophet without honor," as someone who should be given great respect due to their relationship with God.

Was Jesus an ordinary person?

To consider Jesus as an ordinary person - as we also find among secular institutions and their teachers - is to commit a grave spiritual error.

Consider for a moment if you sent a friend to deliver something to someone, and the intended receiver refused to accept your friend, started calling him names and even abused him or harmed him. How would you feel? You would feel pretty offended that such a person did this to your friend, wouldn't you?

This is also portrayed in Jesus' parable about the vineyard owner.

This is how the Supreme Being feels when we offend Jesus or any of His loving servants - "a prophet" as Jesus mentions. Why? Because they are carrying out the Supreme Being's will. They are delivering a message on His behalf. As such, God's representative should be honored just as the Supreme Being would be honored - just as an ambassador is honored as a representative of his country.

To reduce or compare Jesus or a messenger of God to a common person can block and deter our spiritual progress.

Is this about envy?

Envy is often the root. Seeing God's representative as a normal person occurs when a person wants the respect and honor that is typically given to such a person. Such a person wants the attention of others, and they are jealous when they see others having that attention.

This might be compared to an elephant stomping around a garden, destroying the various vegetables in the garden. Envy has few bounds and it will easily encroach into the region where love for the Supreme Being is being practiced.

Spiritual growth might be compared to the fragile vegetables in a garden because growing spiritually is a fragile thing. We currently are full of self-centeredness, as this is our disease, and this is why we’ve fallen to the physical world and have taken on these temporary physical bodies within this hellish physical world.

Jesus' purpose was to save those around him. He came to teach others about the Supreme Being and how we can be saved from our self-centered consciousness. He came to teach us to love - to love God and love others.