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Luke 2:41-52 The Passion Translation (TPT)

At Age Twelve Jesus Visits the Temple

41 Every year Jesus’ parents went to worship at Jerusalem during the Passover festival. 42 When Jesus turned twelve,[a] his parents took him to Jerusalem to observe the Passover, as was their custom. 43 A full day after they began their journey home, Joseph and Mary realized that Jesus was missing. 44 They had assumed he was somewhere in their entourage, but he was nowhere to be found. After a frantic search among relatives and friends, 45 Mary and Joseph returned to Jerusalem to search for him.

46 After being separated from him for three days, they finally found him in the temple, sitting among the Jewish teachers,[b] listening to them and asking probing questions. 47 All who heard Jesus speak were awestruck at his intelligent understanding of all that was being discussed and at his wise answers to their questions.

48 His parents were shocked to find him there, and Mary scolded him, saying, “Son, your father and I have searched for you everywhere! We have been worried sick over not finding you. Why would you do this to us?”

49 Jesus said to them, “Why would you need to search for me? Didn’t you know that it was necessary for me to be here in my Father’s house, consumed with him?”[c]

50 Mary and Joseph didn’t fully understand what Jesus meant.

51 Jesus went back home with them to Nazareth and was obedient to them. His mother[d] treasured Jesus’ words deeply in her heart. 52 As Jesus grew, so did his wisdom and maturity. The favor of men increased upon his life, for he was greatly loved by God.[e]


  1. 2:42 At the age of twelve, a boy was called by the Jews a “son of the law.” The number twelve is found often in the Bible and is linked to God’s perfect administration and our human alignment to it. God’s family of Israel was made up of twelve tribes, twelve sons of Jacob. Jesus chose twelve apostles, there are twelve months in the yearly cycle, and there are twenty-four elders around God’s throne (twelve times two). Jesus coming into the house of God at age twelve points to the perfect alignment he had with his Father as the Apostle of our faith. See Heb. 3:1.
  2. 2:46 Or “rabbis.”
  3. 2:49 The first recorded words of Jesus, when he was only twelve, are given to us here.
  4. 2:51 Mary was an amazing woman and should be honored as the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ. She was the only human being who was with Jesus all the way from his birth to his death. She is also mentioned in Acts 1:14.
  5. 2:52 We know virtually nothing about the eighteen years between ch. 2 and ch. 3, when Jesus went to the Jordan to be baptized by the prophet John. We knew he grew in favor with God and men. He served his earthly father in a carpenter’s shop. It is likely that Joseph, Jesus’ earthly father, died during this season of his life. This left Jesus with the responsibility as firstborn to provide for his family. Amazing mysteries surround this one who is too marvelous for words!
The Passion Translation (TPT)

The Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017, 2018, 2020 by Passion & Fire Ministries, Inc.
Used by permission. All rights reserved. thePassionTranslation.com

Luke 2:41-52 New International Version (NIV)

The Boy Jesus at the Temple

41 Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover. 42 When he was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom. 43 After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. 44 Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. 45 When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”

49 “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”[a] 50 But they did not understand what he was saying to them.

51 Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart. 52 And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.


  1. Luke 2:49 Or be about my Father’s business
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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