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  • Writer's pictureEast Martin CRC

Are We There Yet?

Luke 2:42

Verse 42  When He was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom.

 

    When Jesus and His family came back from Egypt they went back to Joseph and Mary’s hometown of Nazareth instead of going back to Bethlehem.  It is a 60 mile journey from Nazareth to Jerusalem and would have taken them anywhere from 3-5 days, at least, to make the journey when walking with a caravan which is likely how they were traveling since it would have been dangerous to travel as just a small family.

 

    There were likely many friends and extended family members in this caravan as Passover was one of the three festivals they were required to go to Jerusalem for.  In this caravan it was common for the woman and young children be in the front and the men bringing up the rear of the group.  There had been many of these journeys over the years.  Jesus probably started learning the route, excitedly spotting various landmarks marking the familiar path.

 

    The caravan would also have had times of singing as there were certain songs (Psalms 120-134) which were written for the journey up to Jerusalem.  Singing songs which had been sung over the generations, binding generation after generation with timeless songs of praise.  The songs would have helped them prepare their hearts for the festival they were on their way to celebrate.

 

    The year Jesus was 12 may have been a very special one for Him as a Jewish boy was to start going to festival in a more intentional way a year or two before they turned thirteen which is when they would go through the ceremony of becoming an adult.  This may have been the year Jesus was to join the men in the traveling instead of having to be with the women and young children.  He could have felt excitement at not having to be with His mom and younger siblings, hearing the deeper voices on the songs instead of the higher voices of the women.

 

    The anticipation must have been building with each step.  Joseph may have been hearing, “How much longer?” more times than he cared to.  After multiple days and many steps the walls of the great city rose appeared in front of the caravan.  The time to celebrate the memorial festival had finally come and Jesus was going to come into His own more than Mary or Joseph could imagine.

 

Making It Personal

    When have you been excited to go to something?  What is your excitement level for Sunday worship?  Why could you lack excitement for worshiping with other believers?

 

Making It Personal Kids

    Do you have a place you are always excited to go to?  Why do you like going to that place?  Do you get excited about going to church?

 

Closing Prayer

    Father, it is kind of fun to think of a young Jesus going to celebrate the festival which was a foreshadowing of His loving sacrifice.  Help us grow in our excitement of celebrating You, may we always eagerly anticipate time spent with You.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

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