Jesus was a teenage rebel, and it had to be painful! In Jesus The Teenage Rebel, we have been looking at the fact that Jesus grew up in a normal home. Jesus lived without sin, but his parents and his siblings did not. There was surely conflict in His house. Sibling rivalry, parenting issues and other kinds of conflict. Jesus was a pretty normal 12 year old when he chose to go to the temple and ask the Rabi’s questions. But His parents didn’t think so. They were worried! Jesus rebelled against the teen tendency to view adults as irrelevant, boring, stodgy, out of touch old people. Instead, He saw how much He could learn from them and maximized His opportunity to learn.
We are looking at Jesus’ life as a teenager. In the first two parts, the lesson was mainly for the teenagers, but parents got some encouragement too. There are not a lot of writings about this time of His life. However, we can find the best one in Luke 2:41-52. And you know what it shows us? It shows us that; Jesus was a teenage rebel!
Luke 2:41-45 Every year Jesus’ parents traveled to Jerusalem for the Feast of Passover. When he was twelve years old, they went up as they always did for the Feast. When it was over and they left for home, the child Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents didn’t know it. Thinking he was somewhere in the company of pilgrims, they journeyed for a whole day and then began looking for him among relatives and neighbors. When they didn’t find him, they went back to Jerusalem looking for him.
Luke 2:46-48 The next day they found him in the Temple seated among the teachers, listening to them and asking questions. The teachers were all quite taken with him, impressed with the sharpness of his answers. But his parents were not impressed; they were upset and hurt.His mother said, “Young man, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been half out of our minds looking for you.”
There is a third thing I notice in this passage. A very interesting one, especially for parents. Do you want to know what it is? Of course you do, who wouldn’t want to know more about what goes on in the mind of a teenager? Especially if knowing this “top secret” information keeps us from all the “drama” and “heartache” typically associated with raising teens. So pay attention to this amazing detail that many miss when reading this passage.
Jesus’ obedience to God caused some anxiety.
Jesus’ growth produced some tension. By choosing to maximize His opportunity for growth Jesus made His mom and dad anxious. That is often true for us also. As we grow, and change, it is often uncomfortable. It’s difficult of parents and for teens.
We all suffer growing pains. You often hear teenagers and pre-teens complaining about their legs, their arms and just about every extremity in their body. Growing is very uncomfortable!
Let’s not forget the whole issue around weight and height! As pre-teens turn into teenagers and young adults, they first put on some weight. Then they gave growth spurts. Their bodies are ever changing and getting ready for adulthood!
Let me tell you that the same is true spiritually. As we grow in obedience to God, it often creates tension with others around us! These are “spiritual growing pains” and they can be just as uncomfortable as physical growing pains.
I can think of several examples of this spiritual principle. Take for instance when one spouse decides they want to be more giving and another would rather make the next big purchase. That has to add tension to any relationship.
What would happen if one family member suddenly wants to become a world Christian and wants the family to give up a meal each week and send the saved money to the hungry in Africa? Tension!! Especially for those les “spiritual in their growth”.
As we mature as Christians, we may come face to face with this other issue causing tension at work. The partner at work doesn’t understand why you “suddenly” have a moral problem with the way income is reported for tax purposes.
That is just how it goes. Growth produces change and change sometimes creates tensions and anxiety. Expect that! Embrace that as part of the process! Above all, don’t let it stop you from making steps in your spiritual life. It is part of being a rebel!
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