“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost”(Luke 19:10)
“But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law”(Galatians 4:4).
When the fullness time has came, God gave us his son. It was the plan that He had made when He created this world with His Son. If human beings would sin, he will send His Son to this world to save the humanity. This was the plan of Salvation. Finally, according to plan, Jesus was born in Bethlehem, Judah, which was the center of the whole world. The Prophet Micah predicted, “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are in form of old, from ancient times”(Micah 5:2). And was for the beginning of Savior’s ministry, we can see the exact timing of it in Daniel (Cf. Daniel 9:25-27). Therefore, Jesus, our Savior was born in the expected place, at the expected time, in the most humble of circumstances.
Immediately following their visit, doctors went back to their country; and Joseph went to Egypt not to this own home following God’s command.
This was because Herod was trying to find the baby who came as a King of Judah. He was afraid of losing his crown. After he died, Joseph and his family returned to Nazareth.
“And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him. And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men”(Luke 2:40, 52).
This is all that was recorded of young Jesus by Luke. It is simple but it is a good description of how he grew up in the glory of God. As Jesus grew up with wisdom and stature, his character was also very gentle and beautiful. His physical and mental abilities were well balanced and developed. He liked to serve and to be kind to everyone.
Moreover, he had earnestness and patience. His mother was always watching him with care and always prayed that she could rear him as God desired. Young Jesus was taught the stories of the Bible at her knees. So Jesus knew the Bible very well although he didn’t go to the school of the rabbis. The year he became 12 years old, he went to Jerusalem with his parents to attend the Passover Feast. Although His parents were returning home afterwards, He remained there and discussed philosophy and many things with the rabbis in Jerusalem.
“After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers”(Luke 2:46,47).
The 12-year old Jesus surprised all the intellectual rabbis with his wise questions and marvelous answers.
Until he became thirty, Jesus worked with his own hands like his father, Joseph. His parents were poor, so he experienced pain and poverty. He had to work every day but he took the burdens of the household with joy. He never spent the days gaining pleasure or meaningless things.
By the way, Nazareth, the city where Jesus grew up, was a very sinful village. People even asked; Can any good thing come out of Nazareth? However Jesus stayed far away from sin while he was living there. He carefully guarded his purity, so he never did anything wrong. He had so much love and sympathy that he helped the poor, cheers the discouraged, comfort the suffering, and cared for the weak women and children.
Therefore Bible said; “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are-yet was without sin“(Hebrew 4:15).
Jesus lived a sinless life to be our example even in His humble life in Nazareth.
The people of Judah entered society at the age of 30. Therefore, Jesus was also baptized to begin His mission at this pivotal age. When he came to be baptized, John recognized in Him purity. The very atmosphere of His presence was holy and awe-inspiring. John knew and felt it. Among the people that had gathered about him at the Jordan River, only Jesus had this holy atmosphere.
When John thought he was the promised one the Jews had been waiting for, the Holy Spirit confirmed it. Jesus didn’t have to receive baptism on his account, because he was sinless.
Baptism is a ceremony that symbolizes a confession of guilt. But Jesus came to this world to be an example, so he had to be baptized.
John baptized him at the Jordan River, by putting his whole body into the water. When he was coming up out of the water, the Holy spirit descended on him in the form of a dove, they heard a holy voice from Heaven, “This is my son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased”(Matthew 3:17). For this John could confirm that Jesus was a Messiah in certain. So he told the multitude, “Look, the Lamb of God”(John 1:36).
After being baptized, Jesus went to the wilderness to receive power and contemplate his work and plan. He fasted and prayed for forty days and nights there. Satan, who made Adam and Eve fall into sin before, thought it was the best time to tempt Jesus. So Satan used the appetite as the first temptation for Jesus. “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread”(Matthew 4:3). It meant that Satan wanted Jesus to use his divine power from God to fulfill his own selfish desire. But Jesus answered with the scripture from Deuteronomy 8:3, It is written; “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God”(Matthew 4:4).
Satan’s second attempt was to flatter his self-importance. “He led him to a high place and told him to fall down. He said, it is written: He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone”(Matthew 4:6), Jesus answered him, “it is also written: Do not put the Lord your God to the test”(Matthew 4:7).
The devil tried again and took him to a very high place and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor, “all this I will give you if you bow down and worship me”(Matthew 4:9).
Through those words, Jesus realized what Satan wanted and said to him, it is written: “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only”(Matthew 4:10).
When Satan wants to approach us, there are three enticements-appetite, honor, earthly wealth and power. Through these three things, Satan will bring temptation upon us. The only thing that we can rely on is the word of God. Keeping God’s words in our hearts is a proven method to overcome temptation and to live in this world safely.
After being baptized, and defeating temptation, Jesus went back to Nazareth to start his ministry. One Sabbath day, He read from the book of the prophet Isaiah in a synagogue, which mentioned his work. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to free the oppressed, and to proclaim the year of the Savior.” (Luke 4:18,19, Cf Isaiah 61:1,2) After that, He said, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing”(Luke 4:21). It meant that He would complete the prophecy of Isaiah.
“Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.” (Matthew 9:35)
He taught people the word of life in the synagogues and healed the sick. He was a helper of the poor, a friend of sinners, and protector of widows and orphans. Everyone who got in trouble was seeking for solutions from Him and He comforted everyone who was heart-broken and discouraged. Jesus was the Great Healer for everyone. Jesus performed a lot of miracles that we can never understand. He healed the brokenhearted, preached deliverance to the captives and gave sight to the blind. Moreover, He miraculously fed thousands of people with five loaves of bread and two fishes, walked upon the waves, and spoke peace to the stormy sea.
He did what man can’t do; which shows his divinity. His birth showed us the combination of humanity and divinity; His life also showed us his life filled with divinity and not only humanity. He was the Creator who made this whole world, and the ability of creation was in Him.
He was a 100% man but He was 100% God. He was the bridge that connected the earth to Heaven and a medium of communication between God and man.
“Jesus said; I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”(John 14:6).
He liked to flash His divinity through His humanity and to be called as the Son of Man. He said about his mission, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost“(Luke 19:10). “just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many”(Matthew 20:28). And when Mary had Jesus, an Angel said to Joseph, “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins”(Matthew 1:21). His mission was to find the lost people, to save the sinners from their sin with his life. “And He also said, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him might have eternal life”(John 3:14, 15). It refers to the fact that he would die on the cross.
When the Israelites were in the wilderness, they were cursed by their disobedience to be bitten to die by the venomous snakes. “When Moses prayed for the people of Israel, God replied, make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live”(Numbers 21: 8).
So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole, and everyone who looked at it, could live. He reminded them of the story that symbolized His crucifixion for them. By this, He foretold that he would die on the cross and asked us to believe that he would be crucified for our sin. The cross is the memorial of Jesus’ sacrifice and His infinite love.