In verse 40, when Jesus was still very young, Luke said, “And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.” Then in the last verse of our text, verse 52, Luke wrote, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.” These two statements essentially say that Jesus matured physically, spiritually, and intellectually, and sandwiched between verses 40 and 52 is the account of Jesus in the temple at the age of 12.
ADVENT: MARY AND THE PATH TO PURPOSE
Studying this passage, the first step I see in the path to purpose is “be prepared.” The Prophet Isaiah said the Messiah would be born to a virgin (Is 7:14), and Mary had maintained her purity. If she had compromised her purity for a moment of pleasure, she would have forfeited the honor that was to be hers. Once we embrace the idea that we have a God-given purpose, we need to prepare.
Christmas: Luke’s Musical
Luke includes four songs in the birth narratives, each following a powerful moment in the narrative. The early church gave each of these songs a title in Latin, which as the language of Rome, became the main language of the early church. Today I want to look at these four songs in the order they appear and explore the main message of each of them as an outline for the Christmas story.
It’s A Family Resemblance
The ministry of Jesus in saving, healing, and delivering people is a powerful attraction when it is the real deal. Too many churches have more hype than hope, more music than ministry, and more preaching than power. However, when Jesus is in the house, when He is lifted up, when the authority of His Word breaks the yoke and sets the captives free, people will show up, business will pick up, and prayers will go up.
Mary, the Model of Motherhood
As Christians, we try to model our life after the example of Christ and other people in the Bible who exemplified true Christian character. When it comes to a model for motherhood, two of the most powerful examples would be Jochebed, the mother of Moses, and Mary, the mother of Jesus. However, Mary would have to get the top spot because from the beginning she had to overcome obstacles, endure sorrow, and realize that she would never be the authoritative voice directing the destiny of her Son’s life.