Let’s assume, because of Luke 2:52 and Isaiah 7:15, that Jesus was born not knowing that he was fully God, the Messiah, not knowing everything from day one, and that he then grew and matured basically as children do, in speech and clarity of thinking, etc. He grew in wisdom and learned right from wrong (always choosing right of course, he just learned what was wrong). One day, at some point in his young life, he started a conversation with God that might have gone something like this:
“God, why am I so different? Why can’t I fit in? How is it that the Scriptures are so real to me, so fascinating, so alive, and yet to others they seem dry, rote? Why do I see the Scriptures in different ways and with different revelations, and others seem to only see them the exact same way they’ve always seen them? How is it that I experience you so close and real, so clear and touchable, yet others perceive you as distant, judgmental, and dangerous? I’m different, why?
What is it about me that causes me to be consumed by you? Your words in the Scriptures dance before me in living color, as if I’ve lived them all before. I feel drowned in your words—like they’re bone and marrow in me. I am fascinated by your voice, mesmerized by seeing your face across every scroll. As I read them light and knowledge flow through me in revelation after revelation.
And you, God, Spirit of My Spirit, Life of My Life, Essence of My Essence—how can I be so all-consumed by you? As if I could reach out and touch you—as if turning quick enough I’d see you there—even more, as if your very life itself, your very Being filles me inside. Words are unnecessary; our communion is Spirit to Spirit. As you sense my every thought and feeling, so I sense yours, your heart, your desires, your will. I feel a unity, a Oneness with you – so that whatever I say or do, it’s as if you are in me.
God—how can this be … Is this right? Why me? I seem to be the only one … what is this? I don’t understand … unless … oh God, oh God … surely not me? Oh no … it can’t be me, not me! … out of Bethlehem … of the lineage of David …
There’s no way, how? The Messiah, God? The Messiah? But they say he’ll come to rescue us from the Romans, that he’ll …
No, I’ve always known it wouldn’t be like that. That wasn’t what you had in mind, but I never thought … that is, me? But what do I do? How do I be the Messiah?
… I see, nothing right now. Well, I think I can handle that. Just be a carpenter? What kind of Messiah is that?
You’re right, not the one they’re all looking for. Boy are they going to be surprised! I’m not exactly what I was looking for either.
Oh yeah, what about this ‘born of a virgin’ thing, I do have a father you know. You? But Joseph … okay, I’ll ask mother.
Wow, this is incredible! No wonder I’m different, that I never fit in. I knew we were close, but … Dad? Wow! There are a lot of prophecies about the Messi … I mean me … this isn’t going to be any fun, is it?”
From then until he was thirty Jesus simply experienced life on planet earth. On the physical side, he lived as a human in a fallen body: mosquito bites that itched, hands that got calluses, and bone-weary nights on a hard ground. He learned to deal with bitterness, temptation, relatives and friends, love and hate, frustration and impatience, sin, sickness, and death. At the same time, he learned of life’s pleasures, like joy and laughter, good food and fellowship, holding babies, and what money can do for you and your life. Spiritually he learned to be the Messiah, to understand God and to obey, follow, and trust him. He was taught knowledge of God and his Scriptures, and to receive revelation after revelation until he lived, breathed, and moved in tune with God. He gained confidence in himself, his messiahship, and in what his Father wanted. And then the day came when, at thirty, he headed for the Jordan.
It had begun – a visible God.