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Mary and Joseph lose Jesus in Jerusalem at the feast of Passover when he is twelve
years old. On the third day searching, they find him in the temple, sitting
with the teachers, listening and asking questions. All who hear him are amazed at his
understanding and his answers.
When his parents saw him they were astonished, and his mother said to him: "Son why have you done this to us? You see that your father and I have been searching for you in sorrow." His parents did not understand when Jesus asks them why they did not know that he would be in his Father's house? Jesus returns with his parents and is obedient to them.
Two more writers, Mark and John start their gospels at this point. MARK,
Not one of the twelve apostles but a disciple and interpreter of Peter, wrote down what had
been preached by Peter, one of the twelve apostles. This is the shortest of the four
JOHN was one of the twelve apostles and writer of the gospel of John.
The first thing John says in his gospel is that Jesus is the only Son of God. Jesus was there in the Father's presence from the beginning as "the Word of God" and through him all things came into being.
The Father sent him into the world as a man, made of flesh and bone, but the world who was made through him did not know him. Even his own people rejected him, but anyone who received him and believed that the Father sent him, he gave them the right to become God's children.
The law was given to us by Moses; but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, but Jesus who is at the Father's side, has made him known to us.
John the baptist came to the desert of Judea and started preaching: "Turn away from your sins because the reign of God is at hand!" John was the man the prophet Isaiah was speaking about when he said:
"A voice of one calling in the desert,
Prepare the way for the Lord,
make a straight path for him to travel."
John was clothed in a garment made of camel hair, wore a leather belt around his waste and
his food was grasshoppers and wild honey. People from Jerusalem, Judea and the area
surrounding the Jordan River came to see him. All who confessed their sins were baptized
with water by him.
When John saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming to him to be baptized, he called them snakes and said, "First do those things that show that you have turned from your sins and don't think you can escape from the punishment God is about to send by saying that Abraham is your ancestor." God can take these rocks and make descendants for Abraham!
Then the people asked him, "What are we to do?" John tells them, "Share your food and clothing with those that have none", and to the tax collectors he said, "Don't collect more than is legal!" and to the soldiers he said, "Be content with your pay and don't take money from anyone by force or accuse anyone falsely."
The Jewish authorities sent some priests and Levites to question John about his identity.
After questioning him they asked, "If you are not the Messiah nor Elijah nor the Prophet,
why do you baptize?
John answered, "The ax is ready to cut down the trees at the roots: every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown in the fire.
I baptize you with water to show that you have repented, but the one who will come after me will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
He is much greater than I am; and I am not good enough even to carry his sandals. He has his winnowing shovel with him to thresh out all the grain. He will gather his wheat into his barn, but he will burn the chaff in a fire that never goes out."
Jesus makes his appearance before John to be baptized, and after Jesus is baptized, he comes up out of the water, the sky opens and John sees the Spirit of God descend like a dove and hover over him. Then, a voice from the heavens says,
"You are my beloved Son, On you my favor rests."
John told his disciples the next day when he saw Jesus coming toward him, "Look there is the lamb
of God who takes away the sin of the world!
This is the one I was talking about when I said, 'A man is coming after me, but he is greater than I am, because he existed before I was born'. I confess I did not recognize him, though the very reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel." But I did not recognize him. The one who sent me to baptize with water told me, 'When you see the Spirit descend and rest on someone, it is he who is to baptize with the Holy Spirit.' Now I have seen for myself and have testified, 'This is God's chosen One.'"
After his baptism, Jesus is lead by the Holy Spirit into the desert where he remains for forty days and is tempted by the devil. The devil proposes three temptations: "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to turn to bread."
and Jesus answered him,
"The scripture says, 'Man cannot live on bread alone but needs every word that God speaks.'"
Then the devil takes Jesus to the highest point of the temple in the Holy City and says, "If you are God's son, throw yourself off this point for the scripture says, 'God will give orders to his angels about you: they will hold you up with their hands, so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones.'"
"But the scripture also says, 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'"
Finally the devil took Jesus to a very high mountain and showed all the kingdoms of the world in all their greatness. The devil said, "All this I will give you if you kneel down and worship me."
Then Jesus answered,
"Go away, Satan! The scripture says, 'Worship the Lord your God and serve only him!'"
Then the devil left Jesus and the angels came and tended to his needs.
After Jesus returns from the desert, he learns that Herod has John the Baptist arrested and thrown into prison because John claimed it was wrong of Herod to marry his brother's wife. Jesus decides to leave Nazareth and go to Galilee and live in Capernaum by the sea near the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali. In this way what was written by the prophet Isaiah was fulfilled:
"Land of Zebulun, land of Naphtali, on the road to the sea, on the other side of the Jordan, Galilee, land of the Gentiles! The people who live in darkness will see a great light. On those who live in the dark land of death the light will shine."
From that time Jesus began to preach his message:
"Turn away from your sins, because the Kingdom of heaven is near!"
Jesus starts his ministry; preaching the good news, healing the sick, comforting the poor
in spirit, performing many great miracles, and even bringing the dead back to life.
Jesus gains popularity throughout Galilee and Judea, and his healing and teachings command respect wherever he goes except Nazareth, the town in which Jesus was raised and grew up. Jesus did not perform any miracles there and he angered the people so much that they dragged him to a cliff to throw him over, but Luke in Chapter 4, verse 30 says '...they were intending to throw him over the cliff, but he walked through the middle of the crowd and went his way.'
Jesus ministry lasted anywhere from two and a half to three and a half years. All four gospels are filled with the stories of Jesus ministry like the time he and his disciples were crossing the sea in a storm and the boat started to be swamped with water, but Jesus calmed the storm and the waves. Another story where Jesus fed 5000 people who came to see him in a remote area having only five loaves of bread and two fish.
These stories are easy to find, but I will be concerned here with the highlights of Jesus' life so that the storyline can be presented clearly.
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January---------Lazarus And The Rich Man
February-------The Greatest Commandment ("about love")
March-----------The Lost Sheep / The Lost Son
April-------------Meaning Of Easter / 3 Examples From Jesus
May--------------The Worry Of Daily Life
June-------------The Ten Lepers
July--------------The Good Samaritan
August----------How To Give and How To Pray
September-----The Un-believing Towns
October---------Signs Revealing Christ's Return To Earth
November------The Last Supper
December------Why We Should Celebrate Christmas
January--------The Things That Make A Person Unclean
February-------Marriage, Adultery, and Divorce
March-----------Jesus Chooses The Apostles
April-------------The Coming Persecutions For The Believers
May--------------Jesus Feeds 5000 Men ( part 1 )
June-------------Jesus Walks On The Water ( part 2 )
July--------------The Bread Of Life ( part 3 )
August----------The Meaning Of The Cross
September-----Jonah And The Whale
October---------Jesus And The Devil ( Satan )
November------Jesus And The Sabbath ( The Day Of Rest )
December------The Christmas Story ( The Birth Of Jesus )
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