Historic Jesus

The city of Capernaum was located on the northwest shore of Lake Galilee. The name means "village of Nahum," but there is no indication that this has any reference to the prophet Nahum.

During the time of Jesus, Capernaum was a city large enough to be a military post. The presence of a centurion in the city meant that at least a century of the Roman army was stationed there. In those days the synagogue in Capernaum was given to the community by the centurion

Capernaum was- also important enough to be a major tax collecting station. Matthew was the tax collector there before he joined Jesus' disciples. It was also a fishing center.

Jesus made Capernaum his main teaching center during the period of his Galilean ministry. He performed many miracles there and taught many people along the nearby lake shore. Before he left the city for Jerusalem, he condemned the people of Capernaum for failing to respond to his teachings, even though they had seen many great miracles. The city has disappeared. The most probable site includes the ruins of a second-century synagogue, which would have been built over the location of the synagogue built by the centurion.