Summary: Moments in Jesus life where the wittnesses were amazed.
Are You amazed?
Sometimes I think it is hard to amaze me any more. I wonder if it is the same for you. We can see so much on TV and movies. Magical things and places and they look pretty real.
I am seeing the commercial for Ghost rider on TV and whenever the star cranks his motorcycle he looks like he burst into flames…It looks strangely real.
As a kid, I always watched the magician’s hands. Occasionally, I caught them reaching in a pocket or flipping the platter over before the audience could see the bowl was glued to the surface. And once I got the chance to learn that the levitating lady was actually connected to a firm platform supported behind the curtain.
As a kid I always wanted to know the trick.
To be honest though was fooled by most magicians. I never figured out the trick.
In a way I wanted magic to be real. I wanted to be amazed. I wanted to be surprised and wow-ed.
This week, I decided to look on the internet and see if I could find any pictures that raised a since of amazement in me.
I have a few pictures to show you of things that caught my attention.
Today I am asking the question, Are You Amazed?
Not by the pictures I showed.
But are you really amazed by anything anymore?
I did some more research, this time in the Bible, and looked at the passages where the people were amazed or astonished in meetings with Jesus. There are 41 events in the Gospels where those words are used to describe people’s responses to Jesus.
I tried my best to fit all of them into today’s message…..you may be relieved to know that I failed to be able to find a way to make that process amazing. I decided to choose just a few. And offer some brief observations about the situations.
We will start with:
Slide - Boy Jesus - Luke 2:47-52
Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.
When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”
"Why were you searching for me?" he asked. "Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?" But they did not understand what he was saying to them.
Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
According to Luke, the boy Jesus ends up in the temple instead of heading home with his family after the Passover. For us this is the one boyhood story about Jesus.
In this snapshot of Jesus Life we hear how the scribes, the teachers and other the people present were AMAZED at his understanding of scripture.
I don’t think that we can automatically assume that He was there teaching an interpretation of the scriptures. I don’t think the was expanding the understanding of the educated men of the temple. As highly educated men they would never have been amazed at the teaching of a child. But, they could have been impressed at how much this boy from a distant village, with a high mixture of Jew and Gentile residents knew of the Law and Prophets. Perhaps, he was able to quote blocks of scripture in response to the teachers questions about what Isaiah said or details about Solomon’s wisdom.
For the teachers in the temple to be ASTONISHED, I do wonder if His answers to their questions were too good. Too grownup. Too well thought out for a boy of 12.
I wonder if he was able to explain the meanings and usage of words like atonement, or maybe how animal sacrifices worked to cover sins and/or other difficult concepts.
It is easy for us to think about Jesus growing physically, from a child to a young man but, it is difficult for us to imagine Jesus growing spiritually. The idea that he would learn the existing understanding of God and the Law as regular people did.
Doesn’t it seem likely that the son of God needed to experience a human existence and limitations if he were to understand the human condition?
Perhaps the reason he stayed in the temple was to learn things in the scriptures about himself. Maybe, He needs teachers, who were objective and who would not avoid interpreting the text for him to explain about the teaching of the prophet’s description of the suffering messiah.
I would suspect that Jesus could not get a clear description about that kind of scriptures at home.