When Jesus Was a Child

“When Jesus Was a Child,” Friend, Dec. 2013, 34–35

When Jesus Was a Child

When Jesus Was a Child

We all know the story of Christ’s birth, but what happened after He was born in the stable in Bethlehem?

Rachel and Thomas M., ages 12 and 10, visited the Jerusalem Motion Picture Set in Goshen, Utah, USA. The Church built this set to film videos about the life of Jesus Christ. Come with Rachel and Thomas to see what life was like for Jesus when He was a child.

When Jesus was about a month old, Joseph and Mary brought Him to the temple. This was like when babies today receive a special blessing from men who hold the priesthood. “It’s important to take babies to church so they can start to learn the gospel while they’re small,” Rachel said.

Jesus grew up in a small town called Nazareth. Some people didn’t think that He was the Messiah because He was from such an unimportant place. “It doesn’t matter where you are, you can still be kind and sacrifice for others,” Thomas said.

Joseph was a carpenter. As Jesus grew older, He probably helped Joseph. Thomas helps his mom with chores like folding clothes, setting the table, and taking out the garbage. “I can do more by going the extra mile. Jesus probably did that,” Thomas said.

Jesus probably celebrated yearly Jewish festivals like Hanukkah, Purim, and the Passover. Rachel likes celebrating holidays with her family. “Holidays are important because they give us time to spend together,” she said.

Did you know that Jesus had sisters and at least four brothers? (See Matthew 13:55–56.) “I can follow His example by being kinder to my brothers,” Rachel said.

Jewish boys in Jesus’s time started learning to read and write from the scriptures when they were six years old. When they turned 12, they were taken to Jerusalem to be tested. When Jesus went to the temple with His family, everyone was amazed at how well He knew the scriptures. “I can learn more about the scriptures by studying them by myself and with my family,” Rachel said.

Jesus’s childhood prepared Him to teach His Father’s gospel here on earth. He lived a perfect life so that He could sacrifice Himself for our sins. “It’s important that Jesus died for our sins and was resurrected. If He hadn’t, the gospel wouldn’t be complete,” Thomas said. “I know the gospel is true because I have prayed about it. I have a testimony that Jesus lived and died and that Joseph Smith saw Jesus after He was resurrected.” This Christmas, remember what Christ did for you and try to be like Him. He was once a little child like you.