Jesus’ teenage and early adult life

Does anybody have an idea why there is no written account of Jesus’ teenage and early adult life in the Bible? Appreciate your thoughts on this. Thank you.


Hi, @Sherilyn!
The basic response to your inquiry is that the details not inserted in the Bible are either things to be revealed in its due time (especially the prohetic ones), or those that do not essentially affect the Gospel message in general on the subject of Man’s salvation.
There are other resources that supply additional information about Jesus’s younger years but these are unreliable and spurious.

John 20:30,31
And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

John 21:25
And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.


I would add that, except for His 12 year old incident in the temple, what happened between His birth and His baptism was largely irrelevant. That may sound horrible to say, but is there any other way to take the fact that it’s almost all been left out? Of course, He was sinless throughout all that time, but that’s dramatically covered right after His baptism.

What was relevant was the fulfillment of various prophecies surrounding His birth, which Matthew and Luke take care to record.

And almost everything else relevant to His earthly mission was pending His baptism.

Because for Jesus to be an example that we mortals could actually follow, He could not do life with all the advantages of His divinity as the Son of God. That would have been “cheating” (as the devil tempted Him to do after He fasted 40 days in the wilderness).

Instead, He did life in the power of the Holy Spirit - the same as all the rest of us would have to do. Every miracle He performed, every sermon He preached, every place He went, every breath He drew was all in the power, wisdom, guidance and grace of the Holy Spirit as the Father directed.

And then He said to us - Go thou and do likewise! He said to us - Greater deeds than I’ve done shall ye do!

And that’s only possible because the same Holy Spirit Who filled and empowered Him can also fill and empower us.

So until the Spirit came upon Him at His baptism, there’s not that much that a Spirit-filled believer could look to as an example to follow.

I hope this makes sense to you.


Hello @jlyons, I don’t know if I’m taking this out of context, but I didn’t quite understand the “bookends” of your explanation. If you don’t mind clarifying for me:

I know this observation has brought some to the conclusion that Jesus did not become God in the sense of the Word becoming flesh, until His baptism when the Spirit of God descended upon Him in the form of a dove. How would you explain His complete divinity throughout His whole life, when the Spirit was not given to Him until His baptism?

And if He was God His whole earthly life — as we believe Him to be — then why was it so important that He be baptized and receive the Holy Spirit Himself?


Good question, @AnnaLinzey!

Of course, there has never been a moment when Jesus was not fully God - nor could there ever be. From everlasting to everlasting, He is God - Psalm 90:2.

But one of His purposes in coming to this world was to give us mortals an example to follow (I Peter 2:21; John 13:15; I Corinthians 11:1).

Now, if He went through life using all of His omniscience and omnipotence to deal with the challenges of life in this world, and then told us to do what He did - well, we don’t have those divine attributes. We couldn’t follow His example if He’d done all of those miracles in His own power as the Son of God.

So while He was on earth, He deliberately refrained from exercising His own divine powers - tied His hands behind His back, so to speak. Although He was anything but an ordinary mortal, He was willing to do life as an ordinary mortal. When human life got hard, He refused to use His omnipotence to make it easier on Himself.

In the carpenter’s shop, He could have zapped perfectly formed chairs into existence in an instant instead of making them the hard way as Joseph had to do. When confronted by enemies, He could have blasted them all away with a whisper instead of allowing them to insult and abuse him. When fasting in the desert, He could have transformed stones into bread instead of suffering hunger. But if He was going to “cheat” when living like the rest of us became too hard, then He would not have been an example that we could actually follow. That purpose in His coming to earth would have failed.

So to be an example His disciples could actually follow, He would need to do life as a common mortal Who depended upon the Spirit of God to accomplish what the Father wanted from Him in this world. And so, although He never quit being fully God, He refrained from using His own omnipotence and omniscience, and relied fully on the indwelling Holy Spirit and prayer, just as His followers would have to do, to fulfill all that God ordained for Him.

But at no point did He ever cease to really be God. He accepted worship as God, He claimed to be the Son of God, the claimed to be one with the Father, He said He would someday judge the world as God.

John 1 records His baptism when the Holy Spirit came upon Him. John 2 records His first miracle at the wedding in Cana of Galilee. Every miracle He did was performed not in His omnipotent power as the Son, but in the Spirit’s omnipotent power. In that way, He could be an Example that we could follow. We too can be empowered by the Spirit of God to live and serve as He did.

Does this clarify what you were wondering about?


YES! That makes since! Thank you for spelling it out that way. It answers my posted questions :slight_smile:

But it stimulated another question: does that mean that Jesus did not have the Spirit before his baptism? In other words, was the Holy Spirit separate from Jesus from birth until his baptism?

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Well, in the sense that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct Persons of the Trinity, then yes - you could say that the Holy Spirit was separate from Jesus until His baptism. In fact, John saw the Spirit descending in the form of a dove and lighting upon Jesus. So prior to that, they were clearly separate.

But if there was such a thing as spiritual DNA, then the Spirit of Christ and the Holy Spirit would be twins! So in that sense, they are One - always have been, always will be.

(Talking about the Trinity can get complicated pretty quickly!)


I see that :slight_smile: So, this is a question that I have had, but it naturally flows here: is Jesus’s spirit the same spirit as the Holy Spirit, or is it different? And if it’s different, then what kind of spirit did Jesus have before the Holy Spirit descended upon Him?

Other than all these questions, I can see how the trinity would be extremely clear at this moment in time when Jesus is baptized, the Father declares Jesus from heaven as His only begotten Son, the Holy Spirit descends upon Jesus like a dove.

But reconciling that fact that Jesus also had a spirit while He is God and the Holy Spirit as God is something that has me boggled! Unless Jesus’s spirit was animated by the Holy Spirit as a hand in a glove… maybe this conversation needs to move to another thread to clarify what exactly a spirit in a human body is… :smile:

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Yes - I can see that the interesting “rabbit trail” we’re pursuing is probably cluttering up the original topic. Tell you what - make a new thread wording the topic to suit you, and I’ll be glad to join in!


A friend of mine asked a similar question but I am not able to answer. I don’t know how to answer this question. “Why was it necessary for Jesus to come as a baby, he could have came as an adult?”

Please advise.

Hi @zharoon,
One way to deal with this question is this - there were several messianic prophecies (i.e., pertaining to the messiah) which related to the birth of the Messiah. These were considered to be messianic by the Jews of that time and even today. These could not have been fulfilled if Jesus came as an adult only for the 3 years of ministry.

1. He would be born of a virgin.
Isaiah 7:14 - Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.
2. The Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.
Micah 5:2 - “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”
3. The child messiah would be a wonderful counselor, mighty God…
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
4. The messiah would have a stint in Egypt, which Christ fulfilled as an infant.
Matthew 2:14,15 - So he got up, took the Child and His mother by night, and withdrew to Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. This fulfilled what the Lord had spoken through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called My Son.”…

Besides fulfilling prophecy, Christ came to show us what man was meant to be, so that we may follow his example. I don’t think this would have been possible if he did not go through the normal growing process of a child.

I am sure there are many more reasons why Christ came as a baby; we will learn more when we meet him.

The scripture does harken back to one important insight into one of the young adult Jesus’s private principles for living while growing up in Nazareth , prior to His publicly, not only entering into the the Valley Of the Shadow of Death , but ultimately suffering the pain of death for us in obedience to the will of His Father.

                " And He came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and as His 
                 custom was, He went into the synagogue on the sabbath day,
                  and stood up for to read . "           ( Luke 4:16 )

Hi, @zharoon :wave:

Prophetically, it behooves Christ to come as a baby as He was to fulfill “the law and the prophets” (Matt.5:17) in its entirety. And Christ’s birth was prophesied thus,

Isa.9:6 “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”

Thus, Luke 2:52b says, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.”

On a side note: does your friend have any particular reason for his question? In case it could help, below is a relevant topic naturally coming after your friend’s inquiry:

Hope this helps :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thank you.