Today’s Reading: Luke 2:41-52
And he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was submissive to them. (Luke 2:51)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Stunning. The One who gave the Law places Himself under the Law, even under the Fourth Commandment. Why? For you, “to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive the adoption as sons” (Galatians 4:5). That’s the promise you received in your Baptism (Galatians 3:27).
Stunning. Jesus places Himself under the Law to do for us what we cannot, and will not, do for ourselves (Romans 8:7). He will honor His father and mother. He will obey them. He will be submissive to them. He will keep the Fourth Commandment, and all the other commandments, perfectly. He will live His life in such a way that His own Law could never accuse or condemn Him.
And yet, it did. For you. Stunning. For 12-year-old Jesus would one day take His life and sacrifice it for you on the Cross. It’s where the Passover sacrifices in the temple were all pointing–to Jesus, to His Cross, to the sacrifice by which you at age 12, and every age before and every age after, are reconciled to God, and promised your spot in the Father’s house. In the place of sacrifice at age 12, Jesus was already thinking about you.
And Jesus still is thinking about you. In Baptism, Jesus washes you every day with the promise of His Cross. In the Absolution and sermons you hear from your pastor, He is still speaking His sacrifice over you. And at the Supper, with His Body and Blood, Jesus still makes sure that when His Father looks at you, all He sees is another Law keeper: “for you, for the forgiveness of sins.” Stunning.
And while you may feel like beating yourself up for the times you have been the cause of your parents’ distress, take comfort in knowing even Jesus’ parents were once distressed over Him. If Jesus could be so misunderstood, don’t be surprised that you can be, too. Remember that God has already declared you holy and His, because of Jesus. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Within the Father’s house The Son has found His home, And to His temple suddenly The Lord of life has come. Lord, visit Thou our souls And teach us by Thy grace Each dim revealing of Thyself With loving awe to trace Till we behold Thy face And know as we are known Thee Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, Coequal Three in One. (“Within the Father’s House” LSB 410, st.1, 5-6)
-Rev. Bradley Drew is pastor of Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Metairie, LA.
Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Duane Bamsch