41 Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Passover Feast. 42 When Jesus was 12 years old, they went up to the feast as usual. 43 After the feast was over, his parents left to go back home. The boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. But they were not aware of it. 44 They thought he was somewhere in their group. So they traveled on for a day. Then they began to look for him among their relatives and friends. 45 They did not find him. So they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple courtyard. He was sitting with the teachers. He was listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at how much he understood. They also were amazed at his answers. 48 When his parents saw him, they were amazed. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been worried about you. We have been looking for you everywhere.” 49 “Why were you looking for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” 50 But they did not understand what he meant by that. 51 Then he went back to Nazareth with them, and he obeyed them. But his mother kept all these things like a secret treasure in her heart. 52 Jesus became wiser and stronger. He also became more and more pleasing to God and to people.
This is the only account of Jesus’ boyhood we have in the Bible. It speaks of Jesus’ wisdom but more noteworthy is Jesus’ reference to God as “my Father”. This is the first instance of Jesus speaking in this manner about God and that therefore He had some understanding He was the Son of God. Luke vividly describes His parents’ emotions and expresses some surprise at Mary & Joseph who should have known more than anyone else His mission.
For me all this is good to note but I love the last verse (52). Jesus “grew in wisdom” meaning he developed knowledge normally, He grew in maturity. He enjoyed a growing good reputation with God and men. All this to say Jesus was like you and I – He truly was God on earth, God with skin on. Yet He had to grow up and develop a good reputation by His lifestyle with those around Him and with God. This shouts at me – if it was good enough for Jesus then it’s good enough for me – to ensure that I pay attention to my growth!
Father help me to grow up in You this year – lead me, enable my obedience as I commit to following You in all You ask of me!
Written by Ps. Richard Botta