All the wisdom of the world is childish foolishness in comparison with the acknowledgment of Christ. For what is more wonderful than the unspeakable mystery, that the Son of God, the image of the eternal Father, took upon him the nature of man. Doubtless, he helped his supposed father, Joseph, to build houses; for Joseph was a carpenter. What will they of Nazareth think at the day of judgment, when they shall see Christ sitting in his divine majesty; surely they will be astonished, and say: “Lord, thou helpest build my house, how comest thou now to this high honor?”

When Jesus was born, doubtless, he cried and wept like other children, and his mother tended him as other mothers tend their children. As he grew up, he was submissive to his parents, and waited on them, and carried his supposed father’s dinner to him, and when he came back, Mary, no doubt, often said: “My dear little Jesus, where hast thou been?” He that takes not offence at the simple, lowly, and mean course of the life of Christ, is endued with high divine art and wisdom; yea, has a special gift of God in the Holy Ghost. Let us ever bear in mind, that our blessed Saviour thus humbled and abased himself, yielding even to the contumelious death of the cross, for the comfort of us poor, miserable and damned creatures.

Me: I love Luther’s comment about what the people of Nazareth will say on the Day of Judgment. This reminds me of Anne Rice’s (the author of all those Vampire books-she has since become a Christian) last book was called Christ The Lord: Out of Egypt: A Novel.

The book is a fictional account of what might have happened as Joseph and Mary moved back to Judea after Christ’s formative years were spent in Egypt. The Bible is, of course, silent on this part of Jesus’ life. Rice’s novel is pure speculation but it is faithful speculation. There is an element of a super-hero origin story as the young Christ discovers that he is no mere mortal. Not sure if that is proper, but still, it is interesting to think about this period of Christ’s life.

It brings home the reality of the Incarnation. Christ did not have a mere human shell. He was every bit as human as you and me. He had human emotions. He had human weaknesses. He had human temptations. He died a human death. Incredibly, he did not do this for a wife, a child, or a close loved one (i.e., the likely limited universe we might make a similar sacrifice for). He did this for his enemies, people that hate him. He did it for us.