Luke Lesson 5
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While the circumstances of Jesus’ birth were unique (i.e. angelic announcements and a miraculous conception), his infancy and childhood were fairly normal. He was raised up within the culture of Nazareth and within the religious structure of 1st century Judaism. His parents were faithful to the rituals prescribed by the ceremonial law and God used their faithfulness to establish Jesus’ self-awareness of his identity and destiny. Through the covenant of circumcision and subsequent instruction from Torah, Jesus would grow up with the knowledge of God’s Law, which forecast a Messianic figure that would restore the fortunes of Israel. In addition to this basic religious framework, he would eventually become aware of some prophetic words that were spoken about him by holy people in the Jerusalem Temple. These words of affirmation concerning his Messianic calling included an understanding that his ministry would extend beyond the Jews and make salvation available to all people. We must assume that the combination of his parents faithfulness, along with the prophetic instruction of God’s covenant people were the primary shapers of Jesus’ worldview. As the community of faith took a new shape in the birth and development of the church, we will see Timothy growing up in a similar fashion, attaining an authentic faith from his family and finding clarity of God’s purposes for him from the church. In this story we can see how God has ordained a partnership between family and church to raise up a generation of faithful followers of Jesus. Will we do our part?

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