Sermons

Summary: A MESSAGE FOR FATHER'S DAY

BE ABOUT GOD’S BUSINESS

LUKE 2:40-52

A THING THAT USUALLY EXCITES ANY FATHER, IS WHEN A SON COMES UP AND TELLS HIM THAT HE WANTS TO LEARN THE FAMILY BUSINESS. IT MAKES A FATHER PROUD TO CHANGE THE NAME OF THE FAMILY BUSINESS TO INCLUDE “AND SON”.

TWICE IN THE SCRIPTURES WRITERS RECORD THE WORDS OF THE FATHER AS SAYING:

MATTHEW 3:27: AND A VOICE FROM HEAVEN SAID, “THIS IS MY SON, WHOM I LOVE; WITH HIM I AM WELL PLEASED.”

IT WOULD NOT BE A STRETCH TO THINK THAT JESUS KNEW HE WAS THE MESSIAH FROM A VERY EARLY AGE AND THAT HE WAS ALWAYS DOING HIS FATHER’S BUSINESS, WHICH WAS BUILDING THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, AND LEADING PEOPLE TO A SAVING RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD.

I WANT TO BEGIN A SERIES OF MESSAGES, WHERE WE LOOK AT EVENTS AND SAYINGS OF JESUS THAT OCCURED EARLY IN HIS MINISTRY, AND TODAY WE ARE GOING TO LOOK AT JESUS’ FIRST RECORDED STATEMENT. IT IS ALSO INTERESTING IN THAT IT IS THE LAST ACCOUNT WHERE JOSEPH, MARY’S HUSBAND IS MENTIONED.

PART OF GOD’S DIVINE PLAN, INCLUDES THE FACT THAT HE HAS CHOSEN TO REVEAL VERY LITTLE ABOUT THE CHILDHOOD AND EARLY YEARS OF JESUS. BASICALLY WE GO FROM BIRTH TO TWO, TWO TO TWELVE, TWELVE TO THIRTY, WITH NOTHING KNOWN IN BETWEEN. IT CAN LEAVE US SCRATCHING OUR HEADS AND ASKING, “WHAT’S SO IMPORTANT ABOUT THIS ACCOUNT?” THAT’S WHAT THIS MESSAGE IS ABOUT.

JESUS STATEMENT “I MUST BE ABOUT MY FATHER’S BUSINESS” OR AS IT IS IN SOME TRANSLATIONS “I MUST BE IN MY FATHER’S HOUSE.”, HAS TO LEAVE US OPEN TO ASK THE SAME QUESTION. AM I ABOUT MY FATHER’S BUSINESS? AM I WHERE I SHOULD BE WITH THE LORD? AM I PRESENTING THE GOOD NEWS OF THE GOSPEL TO THOSE AROUND US?

CONTEXT:

THE GEOGRAPHIC CONTEXT FOR THIS ACCOUNT IS IN THE TEMPLE IN JERUSALEM AT THE TIME OF THE PASSOVER FEAST. ALL MEN WERE REQUIRED TO APPEAR IN JERUSALEM FOR THE THREE MAIN FEASTS EACH YEAR. THEY WERE:

1. THE PASSOVER AND UNLEAVENED BREAD

2. THE FEAST OF FIRST FRUITS

3. THE FEAST OF INGATHERING OR PENTECOST

THIS PARTICULAR PASSOVER WAS SIGNIFICANT FOR JESUS AS DR. LUKE REMINDS US THAT HE IS 12 YEARS OLD. AT THIS AGE HE WOULD HAVE HAD HIS BAR MITZVAH AND BECAME A SON OF THE LAW. HE WAS NOW A MAN, AND HAD THE DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF A MAN. ONE OF WHICH WAS ATTENDING THE FEASTS. ANOTHER WAS THE PRIVILEGE TO SIT AND INTERACT WITH THE MEN.

NOW I WANT TO TAKE A LITTLE DETOUR FOR A MOMENT AND TALK ABOUT THE AGE OF 12. THERE IS NO SIGNIFICANCE TO THE AGE OF 12 IN THE CHURCH. THERE ARE SOME WHO BELIEVE THAT 12 IS THE AGE OF UNDERSTANDING “SIN” AND UNTIL THEN ALL CHILDREN ARE COVERED BY THE BLOOD OF CHRIST AND SHOULD THEY DIE WILL GO TO HEAVEN.

THIS IS NOT A BIBLICAL CONCEPT. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS AN ABSOLUTE AGE OF UNDERSTANDING. SOME CHILDREN UNDERSTAND AT A VERY EARLY AGE THAT THEY WANT JESUS TO BE THEIR FRIEND. JESUS DID TEACH:

MATTHEW 19:14: JESUS SAID, “LET THE LITTLE CHILDREN COME TO ME, AND DO NOT HINDER THEM, FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN BELONGS TO SUCH AS THESE.”

THERE ARE SOME ADULTS WHO WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND THE FULL MEANING OF REDEMPTION. IS IT TOO LATE FOR THEM BECAUSE THEY ARE PAST THE AGE OF 12?

IT IS WRONG TO STRESS SPIRITUAL REALITIES AND BASE THEM ON AGE. JESUS LOVES THE LITTLE CHILDREN OF THE WORLD AND SHOULD THEY DIE WILL TAKE THEM TO HEAVEN OUT OF HIS LOVE FOR THEM, NOT THEIR AGE.

ONE OF THE BENEFITS OF BEING A “SON OF THE LAW” IS THAT JESUS DID NOT HAVE TO STAY WITH HIS PARENTS. FAMILIES OFTEN TRAVELLED IN GROUPS, OR CARAVANS, FOR SAFETY AND FELLOWSHIP. IT WOULD BE VERY COMMON FOR SONS TO TRAVEL WITH THEIR FRIENDS AND NOT BE SEEN ALL DAY BY THEIR PARENTS. IT WAS ALSO CUSTOMARY FOR MEN AND WOMEN TO TRAVEL IN SEPARATE GROUPS.

THESE FACTS MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR JESUS’ ABSENCE NOT TO BE DISCOVERED UNTIL THE END OF THE DAY. I CAN JUST HEAR THE CONVERSATION, “MARY, HAVE YOU SEEN JESUS”, MARY’S REPLY, “NO I THOUGHT HE WAS WITH YOU.”

MARY AND JOSEPH WOULD BEGIN THEIR SEARCH BY ASKING EVERYONE WITH THEM IF THEY HAD SEEN JESUS. THEN THEY WOULD RETRACE THEIR STEPS BACK TO JERUSALEM.

CAN YOU IMAGINE WHAT WAS GOING THROUGH THEIR MIND. ALL PARENTS WOULD BE FRANTIC TO FIND THEIR CHILDREN, MOST LIKELY BLAMING THEMSELVES FOR NOT BEING VIGILENT. MARY AND JOSEPH WERE UNDER THE ADDED PRESSURE OF NOT JUST LOSING THEIR SON, BUT LOSING THE SON OF GOD.

DESPERATE, THEY FIND HIM THREE DAYS LATER SITTING WITH THE RELIGIOUS LEADERS OF THE DAY. THE CUSTOM WAS TO SIT IN A CIRCLE TALKING AND DISCUSSING IDEAS. THEY WERE AMAZED AT THE DEPTH OF JESUS’ UNDERSTANDING AND THE QUESTIONS HE WOULD ASK.

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