12 Year Old Jesus in the Temple

12 Year Old Jesus in the Temple

This story begins with a law.The law of God..

During the time of Jesus, every Jewish male was required to visit Jerusalem three times every year. Jesus was no exception.

The 12 year old boy sat among some of the greatest Rabbis of the day — and amazed them! So, let’s follow His path to the temple courts.

12 Year Old Jesus in the Temple (His Father’s House)

Jesus Visits Jerusalem and Speaks with Religious Teachers

“His parents went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover.

And when He was twelve years old, they went up there according to the custom of the feast; and as they were returning, after spending the full number of days required, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but His parents were unaware of it.

Instead, they thought that He was somewhere in the caravan, and they went a day’s journey; and then they began looking for Him among their relatives and acquaintances.

And when they did not find Him, they returned to Jerusalem, looking for Him.

Then, after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions.

And all who heard Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers.

When Joseph and Mary saw Him, they were bewildered; and His mother said to Him, “Son, why have You treated us this way? Behold, Your father and I have been anxiously looking for You!”

And He said to them, “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s house?”

And yet they on their part did not understand the statement which He had made to them.

And He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and He continued to be subject to them; and His mother treasured all these things in her heart.

And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and people.” – Luke 2:41-52

The Passover Celebration

According to Deuteronomy 16:16, the males of Jewish decent were required to make a trek to Jerusalem 3 times per year for the festivals.

The most important of these celebrations was Passover.

Remember? This was the day God passed over the first born of Israel which led to the Exodus. In a sense, Jesus appeared to be “just another Jewish lad” headed for the celebration – but we know the rest of the story.

The Temple

During Passover, the temple halls were filled with some of the most distinguished religious teachers — and Jesus was drawn to them.

So, this is where his family found him; asking and answering questions.

According to this Bible passage, his infinite wisdom astounded the experienced teachers.

And, this trend would continue throughout Jesus’ ministry as the leaders would soon try to trap him — to no avail.

Mary’s Dilemma

Fact: Children grow up. Even baby Jesus grew and matured.

Mary and Joseph still thought of Jesus as a child although they both were aware of his miraculous birth. And, maybe they even knew a small bit about his destiny as God’s Son.

But, Mary the mother had problems letting go of the child she had nurtured and taught for 12 years.

Letting Go

12 year old Jesus

If you are a parent, you will understand this.

If not, someday you will if you ever have children of your own.

We have trouble “giving wings” to the one we raised from time of birth.

In truth, they become adults with their own thinking and their own will, many times in conflict with the will we want for them.

Yes, it’s painful to go through. But,  it’s best to…

  • teach them all we can,
  • support them in any way we can,
  • and then, let them live the life God has planned for them.

Paul said (paraphrasing), that if we teach a child in the right way, he (she) will not depart from it.

This means, no matter where life takes them, our hope is that we provided them with a good foundation.

If they fall, they’ll fall back to the foundation – not below it.

So, teach your children well, show them the love of Christ, support them – then watch them fly!

Love in Christ,

– Bob

If you have never made the commitment to receive the love and life-changing experience of Jesus Christ, please take a moment to Read John 3:16 for more information.