Saturday, June 4, 2016

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Fear of the Lord is the Beginning of Wisdom
St. Luke. 2:41-52

Rev. Thomas Kurian

Oklahoma MTC

"Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”

In the English literature, the verb ‘must’ expresses necessity or insistence and, as a noun, it means something that should not be overlooked or missed. The verb ‘must’ in the Greek translation depicts ‘necessity’ brought on by circumstances or by the conduct of others toward us. Thus we see that the Savior, even as a child, expressing the necessity to be in His Father’s House. It is also admirable to note that the flow of responsibility in this incident is from the child to the parents.
Renowned theologian Jürgen Moltmann observes—between the statements ‘born of the virgin Mary’ and ‘suffered under Pontius Pilate’, there is only a comma! The parents, with a true sense of commitment never overlooked or missed a circumstance to give priority that was due to God. Every circumstance, even during crucial times, became an opportunity to reflect God’s goodness.
The word, ‘MUST’ can be expanded to bring out the matters that parents should not miss out when rearing and educating their children:
 M: Made from Above: Parents should always remember that their child is wonderfully and fearfully made (Ps 139: 14). Being given a child reveals the flow of unmerited blessings from God. This pre-knowledge is important prior to anything in their journey of shaping their child from nothing to something.
 U: Understanding of the Above: In the scripture portion, Jesus as a child is not being compelled to spiritual activities. The story reveals that He willfully sits with people, and even not minding any generation gaps. In Colossians 3:1, we read that ‘you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above’.
S: Signs of the Above and Below:  The incident of Jesus listening to the teachers, asking questions and answering them is a necessity then and now. Parents should create situations to explore and expose spiritual truths to ensure clarity amongst children, and thus dispel any confusion. If not done, this may lead to children making corrupt choices. Jesus points to the temple as His Father’s house that should be set apart with the true purpose of nourishing God’s values.
T: Truth of the Above Embraced: Jesus remains in the temple to embrace the truthful realities with immense necessity and interest, even when He is removed from his parents for days. Whether attached or detached, Jesus increases in wisdom and stature as He continues to establish the values of the Kingdom amongst the people.  
In present times, the concept of God is seen as an option, and the opportunity in knowing Him is a choice with compromises rather chance with commitment. Education is seen as a platform for selfish attainment and fulfillment, and many a time it misses out the imparting of the knowledge needed to propagate and maintain a better world.  In this context, as an individual who is part of a family and the church, one must seriously ponder upon the ‘the necessities of Above and Below”


Lord, .. Help us to be Christ-like at all times; seeing each one with Your eyes and valuing them with Your heart of love (Rupert Kaye)
MUST: Molded Under Savior’s Truth