Be About the Father’s Business (Luke 2:40-50)

Today’s Reading: Luke 2:40-50


40 And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon him. 41 Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover. 42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom. 43 And when the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, 44 but supposing him to be in the group they went a day’s journey, but then they began to search for him among their relatives and acquaintances, 45 and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, searching for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 And when his parents saw him, they were astonished. And his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.” 49 And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” 50 And they did not understand the saying that he spoke to them.


The first words of Jesus recorded in Luke’s Good News account were during Jesus’ first Passover in Jerusalem. In Jesus, just a boy, — a fully human boy — was also the fulness of Deity, and with it omniscience. Entering into Jerusalem, he knew that looking after His Father’s affairs meant someday dying outside the walls of that beautiful, bustling city. Perhaps he marked the dark spot in his mind as his parent’s caravan approached the city gate.

Immediately, Jesus was consumed by a sense of mission and moved by the weight of His Messianic identity and calling. There was nowhere else that Jesus wanted to be except in His Father’s house.

Astounding! A boy of his age discoursing with teachers of the law! For awhile, Mary’s motherly instincts blinded her from the gravity of the whole thing. Jesus was sincerely surprised when she and Joseph struggled to understand. He was doing exactly what His Abba, Father wanted Him to do. These were His people. This was His Father’s temple. Before this point in His life, Jesus had never felt more alive or fulfilled. What else could He do?

More than any other thing, Christ’s life was characterized by submission to the Father’s will and administration of that will on the earth. “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me” (Jn. 6:38).

If God foreknew you, He also predestined you to be conformed to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29). We are called to be about our Father’s business.

Are we consumed by a sense of mission? The Father has made his business clear: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15). Are we faithful to the Father’s foreordained purpose? The Father has created us in Christ for “good works…that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).

“Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is” (Ephesians 5:17). The center of Christlikeness, true holiness, is conformity to the will of the Father. Here is adventure, purpose, security, and abundance. Here is deep joy!

Today’s Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father, make me like Jesus. Help me to be about your business. I am bored, exhausted, and exceedingly dissatisfied with my own affairs. I refuse to waste my life on a bigger home, bigger car, bigger bank account, or better retirement. Help my dull eyes and slow heart to see the weight of my calling and identity as an ambassador for the Great God, the Great King, the Only Wise Ruler. Help me to do good always, spread Good News, and be a good steward.

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