. Why Did Jesus Choose to Live in Capernaum?

Why Did Jesus Choose to Live in Capernaum?

Magdala was not by the Jordan River.

Nazareth was not by the Sea of Galilee.

Bethsaida was not in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali.

Only Capernaum met Isaiah’s criteria. Jesus brought a message of grace, love, and repentance—“light” to those who sat in spiritual darkness, including Matthew himself.

The message resounded from quiet Capernaum.

As is God’s habit, Jesus chose what is small for great things.


Understanding the geography of Israel enhances our understanding of the narrative of the Bible. For more information on the geographical, cultural, and historical settings in the Bible, I recommend the Holman Bible Atlas: A Complete Guide to the Expansive Geography of Biblical History and the award-winning Lexham Geographic Commentary on the Gospels.

Karen Engle received her MA in Biblical Studies and Theology from Western Seminary. She is an editor for Faithlife and regularly takes groups to Israel.

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Written by
Karen Engle

Karen Engle is a copy editor for Faithlife. She has a master's in biblical studies and theology from Western Seminary and frequently takes groups to Israel.

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1 comment
  • Are we to understand that Matthew abandoned his post as a Roman official, placing himself at odds with the Roman government? Or Herod’s? And if so, would it have been miraculous that he his breech went unnoticed?

    Mat 9:9 KJV – 9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.

Written by Karen Engle