I’ve got Vacation Bible School (VBS) on my mind all this week. As I’ve prepared to teach about twenty 6th graders, I’ve come to answer this question for the first time—when did Jesus know He was the Son of God?
Every Christmas we celebrate His birth. We remember Mary’s story, Joseph’s story, the angel’s announcement, and the joy of the shepherds when they arrive at the stable to find things just as the angels said. Luke tells us that…
Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19
Sure enough, God’s Son was born. But when did Jesus know He was the Son of God? A baby cannot reason that out. At age one or two, He might have been fascinated with the wise men, but knowing He was the Promised One? Even a four or five-year-old would have trouble with that concept.
When Jesus was in his yeshiva school, He would have studied the Torah. He likely studied some of the prophecies as well, but could he figure out that He was the fulfillment of these prophecies?
Fast forward to the next time we see Jesus. He is on His way to Jerusalem with Mary and Joseph plus most of the neighbors from their Nazareth village. They’re headed to the Feast of the Passover.
Now, we are not told this, but if Mary has yet to tell Jesus about all the miracles of His birth, I think it’s highly probable that she might have decided it was high time she told Him. After all, He is now twelve years old. (Just the age of my 6th graders!)
After their week of festivities and celebration, the families gather their belongings and head back home. You know the story—one day out, Mary and Joseph have the parental dialogue. “I thought he was with you.” “Well, I thought he was with you.” And it’s back to Jerusalem they go for day two!
Meanwhile, where do we find Jesus? At the Temple, speaking with the religious leaders. We’re talking teachers of the law, scribes, rabbis, Pharisees. You know, the most learned of the learned. What would it take for them to even bother with a twelve-year-old? Smart questions. Deep answers. That’s what.
Everyone who heard him was amazed at his answers. Luke 2:47
Once his parents finally find him on the third day, they get past their fear that he’s bleeding in a ditch. Then the other emotion takes hold.
“Son, why have you treated us like this?” Luke 2:48
Here it comes. Jesus said,
“Why were you searching for me? Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house? Luke 2:49
It’s only the beginning. He has much to learn, but He obediently goes home with his parents. And once again,
…his mother treasured all these things in her heart. Luke 2:51
That was day one of VBS.
If you read this by 9:00 AM on Thursday, it will be day four. I will be giving the plan of salvation. Please pray for the right words and the Spirit to move in these 6th graders’ hearts.
~ Joyce ~