Apr 26, 2020 | Lee Becknell

“Committed to our Father’s work.”

     

    Text: Luke 2:41-52
    Last year Lynn and I attended my grandson Ryan’s graduation from Kindergarten. It was very important black tie affair and Lynn was not going to let me miss that. His teachers had asked each child a series of questions and at the ceremony, they introduced the child and shared the answers to these question. What is your favorite color? What is your favorite food? What do you want to be when you grow up? For this message, I only want to focus on the third question. Many wanted to be firefighters, police officers, mermaids and princesses. When it was Ryan’s turn to be introduce and they came to the third question the whole room was rocked. What do you want to be when you grow up? Ryan responded, “I want to be like my dad!”
    Title: “Committed to our Father’s work.”
    Theme: “Jesus statement ‘I must be about my Father’s business’ or as we read in some translations ‘I must be in my Father’s house’, has to cause us to ask the same question. Are we about our Father’s business? Am I where I should be with the Lord? Are the lost learning about the free gift of salvation from me?”
    * Last Sunday, I shared a portion of Scripture about the Feast of Tabernacles. Today, we will be studying a section of Scripture that takes place during the Feast of Passover.
    * May is Mission Month at FBCR. Each year we set aside this time to devote our self’s to financially to be about our Father’s business.
    * Did you know that we personal have 35 missionaries we support through Faith Promise? The money you give to Faith Promise is above your tithe and offerings. If you are not giving, then you really need to ask yourself why not?
    * Throughout this month you will have an opportunity to pledge your yearly support to our Father’s business. The pledge card is already on our Website ready for you.
    * This morning, I would like to share with you three important questions.
    1. Why waste time looking in the wrong places?
    Luke 2:41-46, “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.”
    * I don’t know what a perfect first-century family looked like, but I’m certain that Joseph and Mary didn’t fit the ideal. Joseph had no money. He had no safe place for his wife to give birth and no plausible explanation for her pregnancy. Their family was turned upside down before it even began.
    * By the way there is not perfect family so why not just admit we could all use some help in this area.
    It’s no coincidence that Christ was born into a shaky, uncertain family situation. God goes places where He’s needed. When society is in chaos, you will find God working for His purpose.
    * No matter what the family situation may be, someone has noted that there are only 940 Sundays between the day your child is born and the time he or she turns 18. That’s a good reminder to cherish the time that parents and children have with each other and to use it wisely with God’s inspiration and grace.
    * Beloved, I don’t think there is a parent alive that a one time or another had a temporary lapse of knowledge about where one or more of their children where. If you are contemplating marriage and family, this will be something you will have to face and with some children it may be very often.
    * Most parents would ask themselves, ‘where would so and so like to be?’ they would begin their search in the places that their child had an interest.
    * To search for Jesus anywhere besides His Father’s house was foolishness. He had work to attend to, and clearly, it was His Father’s work
    * Do we know what it’s like to be about our Father’s work?
    2. Who was Jesus with?
    Luke 2:46-47, “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.”
    * We are all familiar with Luke 19:10 where Jesus says, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
    * But in our story today, we find Jesus speaking with the religious leaders of the day. Verse 46! Jesus, loves being with others that love His Father.
    * We can also say that Jesus also came into the world to correct wrong teaching and turn the hearts of people back to His Father.
    * The question we must ask ourselves as we examine our relationship with our church is: ‘what do I see to accomplish with my presence here?’ ‘Why do you come to church?’
    * Answering these type of questions helps us understand the business of God.
    Matthew 6:33, “33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
    2 Corinthians 5:9-10, 17-20; “9 So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
    3. Where did Jesus want to be?
    Luke 2:48-50, “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.”
    * In the answer to His mother, Jesus showed for the first time that He understood His relation to God.
    Luke 1:32-33, “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
    * These words Mary had pondered in her heart; yet while she believed that her child was to be Israel’s Messiah, she did not comprehend His mission.
    * Something very important is going on at the end of our text.
    Luke 2:52, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.”
    * This statement is nearly an exact parallel to 1 Samuel 2:26.
    1 Samuel 2:26, “Now the boy Samuel continued to grow both in stature and in favor with the Lord and also with man.”
    * Why is that important? Well, it’s where Hannah has just given her son away, dedicating him to the Lord. Jesus’ entire ministry was a kind of “donation” from God the Father, giving Jesus away for a season in order to sacrifice Him for our salvation.
    * In this sense, Jesus is a new Samuel, fulfilling the types set forth in the Old Testament and completing the redemptive work.
    * So the central message is that we must, all honor our Father in heaven, even before our earthly father and mother. We must love our Father in heaven more than our earthly father, mother, daughter, or son. We must put Him first before everything else, even very good things. This is a great challenge. But it is the challenge that Jesus Himself points us to.
    * But, it is important to also point out that Jesus did submit to His earthly parents. The text says, “He was subject to them” (vs. 51). This is a great example of voluntary submission; even on the part of One Who was naturally superior.
    * Beloved, if you are a child of God you are responsible for the work of the Father.
    John 9:3-4; “Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. 4 We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work.
    A young man went to seek an important position at a large printing company. He passed the initial interview and went to meet the director for the final interview. The director looked at his resume, and asked, “Have you ever received a scholarship for school?” “No,” the man replied. “It was your father who paid for your studies?” “Yes.” “Where does your father work?” “My father is a blacksmith.” Then, the director asked the young man to show him his hands. They were soft and perfect. “Have you ever helped your parents at their job?” the director continued. “Never. My parents always wanted me to study and read more books. Besides, he can do the job better than I can.” “I have a request for you,” said the director. “When you go home today, go and wash the hands of your father, and then come see me tomorrow morning.” he young man left feeling good about the interview. That night, when he returned home, he asked his father if he would allow him to wash his hands. His father felt rather strange about the request, but agreed. The young man washed his father’s hands, little by little. It was the first time that he noticed all the wrinkles and scars on his father’s hands. Some bruises on his hands were so painful that his skin shuddered upon being touched. It was the first time that the young man recognized what it meant for this pair of hands to have worked every day to be able to pay for his studies. The bruises on his father’s hands were the price that he paid for his child’s education and future. After cleaning his father’s hands, the young man stood in silence, then began to tidy up his father’s workshop. That night, the father and son talked for a long time. The next morning, the young man returned to the director’s office. The director noticed the tears in his eyes. “Can you tell me what you did, and what you learned yesterday?” he asked the young man. “I washed my father’s hands. When I finished, I stayed and cleaned his workshop.” He continued, “Now I know what it is to appreciate and recognize that, without my parents, I would not be who I am today. By helping my father, I now realize how difficult it is to do something on my own. I have come to appreciate the importance and the value of my Father’s work.” The director looked at him with an earnest expression. “You are hired!”

     

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