Summary: Jesus’ reply to his parents reveal to us 3 things: (1)He knows His identity; (1)His heart is with God; (3)He is concerned with His Father’s business. Learn from Him.
In those days, they travelled in caravans and relatives and whole villages often travel together and keep an eye on each other’s children. That explains why the parents lost Jesus. Joseph might have thought he was with Mary, Mary might have thought he was with one of their relatives.
After travelling for one day, then they realised he was not around. They went back to Jerusalem - that took another day. And then in Jerusalem, they spent another day looking for him. Finally they found him - after 3 days - in the temple. He was with the teachers, listening and asking questions. His mother asked, "Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you." (2:48)
2:49 "Why were you searching for me?" he asked. "Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?"
"Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?" NKJV
This reply revealed many important lessons for us today. We are going ponder these words of Jesus. It was truly amazing, that at 12 years of age, Jesus was able to comprehend the heart of God.
1. KNOW YOUR IDENTITY - Be Secured In Him
Speaking to his mother, probably in front of his father Joseph, Jesus tells them he is concerned with His Father’s business. No, he was not referring to Joseph. He was talking about Joseph’s business, which was most likely carpentry. Mark 6:3 mentioned Jesus worked as a carpenter before he started preaching.
Before his own father, he was talking about another Father - his heavenly Father, his God. He knows who he is. Jesus knows his identity, not just as a son of Joseph and Mary, but the Son of God. Verse 50 tells us the parents do not fully understand his unique relationship with God or His mission on earth.
Do you know your identity today? Do you know God, our heavenly Father? Do you know that He is the One who makes you and loves you?
You may know the plan of your father on earth, but do you know the will of your Father in heaven? Maybe some of us here do not know God. You’re drifting through life; not knowing where you’re going and life has no real purpose. You need to know your identity - You’re God’s precious creation. You need to come back and be reconciled with Him. That can happen only through Jesus Christ. Put your trust in Him as your Saviour. John 1:12-13 "Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God..." Gal 3:26 "You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus."
When you know you are His child, then you’ll know that you’re deeply loved. Know that you have a special place in His heart. You have a loving Father watching over your life. Rest secure in Him. I believe that’s why Jesus wasn’t afraid, even though he was left alone in Jerusalem for 3 days, without his parents. He knows, His Father is watching over him.
Do not fear. You’re precious to Him.
2. KNOW YOUR HEART - Be Motivated By Him
You have a special place in His heart. But does God have a special place in your heart?
Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business? I HAD TO BE....
These are strong words. He knows what he OUGHT to do.
We can see the heart of this 12-year old boy. He was totally unafraid, even though he was left alone for 3 days. We were not told how he managed those 3 days; probably he ate and stayed with one of the teachers. But His heart was with His Father’s business. That’s what he was really concerned. That’s why he was listening and asking questions. Verse 47 "Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers." He must have some knowledge and understanding of the Scriptures. He showed us here a desire to know the Scriptures and the purposes of God. That desire is so strong that he is willing to stay behind, all by himself.
What drives you? What motivates you in life? We are all driven by something, where you like it or not. As a boy at 12, we expect Jesus to be playing with children of his same age, in the fields, running around in the streets. Yet he was found among teachers, because some things are more important than others. Some has greater value than others. Some are eternal, while others are temporary.
Ultimately we have to ask, what am I going after, what am I living for? Jesus urges us to "seek first His kingdom and His righteousness..." (Matt 6:33a).