ENCOUNTERS WITH JESUS

THE TEACHERS IN THE TEMPLE COURTS

'After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone was amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished.'

We are not told what questions Jesus asked; we are not told what the Jewish teachers said to him, nor the answers he gave in response.

What we are told is the impact his words made on 'everyone who heard him' and on his parents: they were 'amazed' and 'astonished'.

These words translate two Greek words which literally mean 'they were beside themselves' and 'they were struck out.'

His understanding and his knowledge surprised and confounded them. They, not knowing his true identity, not knowing that he is God in human flesh, could not understand how this child could know and understand so deeply, so clearly, so exhaustively.

We, looking back from the perspective of what he said and did as a grown man, looking back from his statement that 'no one knows the Father except the Son', ought not to be so surprised.

Amazed, yes, amazed that God would condescend and come to us in human form; astonished, yes, by the immensity and awesomeness of this revelational incarnation.

And above all, grateful. Grateful that God has come to us, that he has shown us the truth about who he is in this flesh and blood Jesus Christ. No longer do we need to ask 'What is God like?' or 'Who is God?' To see this Jesus is to see God. To know this Jesus is to know God.

In awe filled adoration and wonder we look at this child, this man, this Jesus, and know that here, in perfect clarity, we see God.

Scriptures: Luke 2:41-50; Matthew 11:27; John 12:45; 2 Corinthians 4:6

Copyright Rosemary Bardsley 2008