Lessons From a 12 Year Old
August 23rd, 2011
- The context: in the Jewish culture of that day, boys were treated as men when they reached the age of 13. Until then they were seen as “nothing”.
- Jesus is always surprising in the gospels – he acts differently to what we expect. Here we would expect Him to boast about being the Son of God and preach at everyone, but instead He sits and listens.
- We can learn a lot from the 12 year old Jesus about how to share our faith.
- Love like Jesus
- ‘sitting among the teachers’
- Jesus was simply spending time with others – not the obvious thing we think of when it comes to sharing our faith.
- We’re so consumed with communicating the message that we often forget to act like the messenger.
- Jesus told many parables about people leaving everything and going after the one seemingly insignificant thing (the lost sheep, the lost coin, etc). The parables Jesus told were not meant to be nice stories but were told to surprise us and make us question their seeming ridiculousness.
- We need to see people as each life that is precious to God. He treasures people – His love is for each person.
- Sometimes we don’t share Jesus because of fear – but most of the time it’s down to a lack of love.
- If you genuinely love people, even if you “fail”, God can still use you.
- Being a smart alec, a self-righteous know-it-all, won’t get you anywhere.
- Love people and help them.
- ‘listening to them and asking them questions’
- Jesus was the last person who needed to ask questions! But questions are the best way to start a conversation about the gospel.
- Find out about the person you’re with – be quick to listen and slow to speak.
- We think sharing the gospel is about talking about ourselves.
- People want to be listened to.
- Asking questions keeps the conversation going.
- If you give too much too fast – ramming stuff down people’s throats – they won’t be able to take it; they’ll “vomit” it back up. Prov. 25:16.
- Questions help you to find out where people are coming from and realise what it is they need to hear.
- You can’t have a one-size-fits-all message.
- Ask questions about what people care about.
- Questions help people realise they need answers.
- ‘Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers’
- This is where people then start to ask you questions back.
- The more you ask people about what they believe, the more they’ll ask you about your beliefs.
- You don’t attack a person – you talk about their beliefs and suggest they may be wrong.
- People need tour guides not Bible bashers. You see God where other people don’t and you point Him out.