Jesus like He is accustomed to doing (because it’s who He is) is once again modeling perfection in His life so that we can mirror it in our own. Now He didn’t do it know ing it would be recording but He did it out of reverence and obedience. This story is found at the end of Luke 2.
As I have grown into my early twenties I have gone through stages of bitterness and resentment towards my parents, but now as a youth pastor I am dealing with students that are right now at this moment struggling with honoring and respecting their parents.
Growing up there would be times that I didn’t understand why it was the way it was so I would ever so obnoxiously utter the word parents can’t stand, “why?” The responses to that question had a very diverse range of responses but the one that was used most frequently was, “because I said so.” I don’t know about you but that didn’t really encourage me to blindly accept the rules of my parents, (Looking back I wish I had) but it led me to figuring the answers out on my own, which often led to trouble.
In this passage you see the progression of a young Jesus going to Jerusalem for the Passover with His family and friends. Now this is a young boy who is the son of God 100% yet the son of Mary and Joseph 100% also, and he demonstrates the submission and respect that earthly parents deserve.
Jesus is twelve and after the Passover is over his family sets back to Nazareth. Thinking He was with the party the group continued along all the way till a days journey from Jerusalem. Once the group stopped His parents discovered He was nowhere to be found. So they set back on that days journey back to Jerusalem to find their son. I’m not positive but considering they, and a large group went to Jerusalem from Nazareth I would guess that other people from surrounding cities would do the same causing Jerusalem to be a mad house, so the fact that their 12 yr. old son was left there must have caused quite the fear to run through their minds. They finally arrive in Jerusalem and after 3 days of searching find Him in the temple asking questions and provided answers, and it says that those who were with Him “were amazed.”
When Mary asked Him, what on earth He was doing He gave this genuine, twelve year old answer, but one only the Son of God fully understood. He said, “didn’t you know I had to be in my father’s house?” At this His parents were confused, I’m sure thinking things like, “um no, your fathers house is in Nazareth, so let’s get a move on.” But what He was doing they didn’t quite grasp. He didn’t say He wanted to be, or that He just went, but that He had to be in His father’s house.
Here is twelve year old son of God Jesus spending time in the house of His father. He understood the importance of spending quality time with His father not only that but He was teaching and learning with others far above His age, but all through His life it says He continued growing in wisdom. Not only was wisdom given to Jesus but He sought it on His own.
So there are two ways that Jesus life points us to better understand following Him, 1) We must see spending intimate time alone with God as important, and 2) We must seek wisdom and knowledge, and growth on our own, as well as through prayer and thirdly Jesus at the end of this story exemplifies humble obedience to His earthly parents. In verse 51 it says He went with them to Nazareth and was “obedient to them”, or that He was “submissive” unto them. He is the ruler of the universe (even at twelve). He was just in heaven at the right hand of God twelve years prior, so all authority is still His, yet He lays down His crown and accepts the role of humility and obedience to His earthly parents.
Take these three characteristics shown by Jesus and implement them into your life this week.
1: Spend intimate time alone with God.
2: Seek wisdom through The Bible, others, and prayer.
3: Respect your parents.