Thank you for mentioning this. The finding in the temple is an interesting passage to be sure and many will suggest, or believe that this points to his being the 'Son of God" with all understanding that this entails. While this may be true in the deepest sense. I see it somewhat differently from the human and historical sense.
As Jesus was growing up he was subject to his earthly mother and father, and to all things human. After all the hoopla of the birth and flight into Egypt etc. Their lives settled into a normal routine. Jesus, growing from and infant had to learn to walk, talk, speak respectfully, behave appropriately, even be potty trained, just as we all must be. In other words as a child, he needed to grow in wisdom and learn all the realities of being human, and being a Jew. During this early time there was little for God to do except protect Him from disease, accident etc.
As He began learning the scriptures, the spirit of His Father began to stir in Him. I think of it as the first stirrings of the Holy Spirit in the human heart. He read the scriptures, listened as others interpreted them and wondered, just as many of us do, how they came up the that particular interpretation. I’m sure he was also struck with the inconsistancies of the official church, just as we do. So he began to question these things in his heart and study on them. No doubt his mother, blessed as she was, helped and encouraged Him.
Thus when he was 12, He had reached some conclusions of His own (or rather of his Father’s) as to where the church elders were in error. Perhaps He was even beginning to develop an understanding of how the scripture should be taught. In other words the basic beginnings of his ministry.
He began by talking to the Elders and Teachers, not at a local synagoge, but in Jeruselem. It says he “astonished them”. At this point it appears he did not Challenge them, but we are given to understand that at this point in his spiritual journey, Jesus was beginning to put it all together. He then returned home with his parents to continue his development as a human adult.
Not written is that all during this time God, through the Holy Spirit, provides Jesus protection and guidance.
In studying the mission of Jesus in salvation, I find it necessary to probe deeper than the parables and the Cross. These are all necessary and sound for us to know, but there is so much more.
If we only look at Jesus as God, we lose the greater essence of his mission to man. God could have accomplished salvation in other ways. So Why this way?
Jesus as a man taught us. Jesus as a man lived with us, laughed with us, showed us through his actions, words, and miracles what the kingdom is all about. He tells us that we can do the things that he does if we have faith. Yet how many of us can move a rock, let alone a mountain with our faith. How many can heal the sick or raise the dead. Yet Jesus promises us that we can if we believe and have faith. His life, death, and resurection must mean more than just miracles, stories and some ethereal salvation. His very life with us is what is to be emulated. This is what we must look at. How did he treat others? How did he react to provcation? How and when in his ministry did he reveal the father, and the course his mission would take?
Thinking about what the Human Jesus actually knew, and when he knew it can bring Him closer to us because we see how much he had to act on faith, just as we are asked to.
Sorry if I’ve rambled a bit.
May God Bless