1/2/15 Jesus: The Early Years

Jesus grows up in Nazareth with his mother and earthly father, and has half-siblings as well.  Every year the family, including extended family, goes to the Temple in Jerusalem to celebrate Passover.  When Jesus is 12 years old, they go to Jerusalem as usually and celebrate the festival, which lasts a week.  When it is over, they start back home, and after a day’s travel, Mary and Joseph can’t find Jesus.  “Have you seen Him?”  Mary asks her sister.  “I thought He was with the cousins, but I can’t find Him anywhere.”  “No,” she answers, “I haven’t seen Him since before we left Jerusalem.”  Panicking now, Mary and Joseph leave the group and hurry back to Jerusalem.  They search all over the city for 3 days, and when they are afraid all hope is lost, finally they find Him in the Temple.  He is sitting with the teachers, listening to them and debating with them about the Holy Scriptures.  They are amazed at His understanding of the Word of God, since He is only 12 years old and has had no formal teaching.  Mary and Joseph run up to Him and throw their arms around Him.  “Son!”  Mary exclaims, “We have been searching for You for days and were afraid You were lost to us!  How could You do this to us?  We have been so afraid, and so sad.”  Jesus replies in surprise, “Why were you searching for Me?  Don’t you know I have to be about My Father’s business?”  Mary and Joseph are also surprised, upon hearing His answer, but Jesus leaves the Temple and goes home to Nazareth with them, and is obedient to their wishes.  He grows to manhood in Nazareth, growing in strength and wisdom, and in knowledge of and favor with God.  Mary treasures all these things in her heart as He grows.

Luke 2:40-52


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