New International Version
"Why were you searching for me?" he asked. "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?"
New Living Translation
"But why did you need to search?" he asked. "Didn't you know that I must be in my Father's house?"
English Standard Version
And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”
New American Standard Bible
And He said to them, "Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father's house?"
King James Bible
And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?
Holman Christian Standard Bible
"Why were you searching for Me?" He asked them. "Didn't you know that I had to be in My Father's house?"
International Standard Version
He asked them, "Why were you looking for me? Didn't you know that I had to be in my Father's house?"
But he replied, "Why were you looking for me? Didn't you know that I must be in my Father's house?"
Aramaic Bible in Plain English
He said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Do you not know that it was fitting for me to be in my Father's house?”
GOD'S WORD® Translation
Jesus said to them, "Why were you looking for me? Didn't you realize that I had to be in my Father's house?"
Jubilee Bible 2000
And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? Knew ye not that it behooves me to be about my Father's business?
King James 2000 Bible
And he said unto them, How is it that you sought me? knew you not that I must be about my Father's business?
American King James Version
And he said to them, How is it that you sought me? knew you not that I must be about my Father's business?
American Standard Version
And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? knew ye not that I must be in my Father's house?
And he said to them: How is it that you sought me? did you not know, that I must be about my father's business?
Darby Bible Translation
And he said to them, Why is it that ye have sought me? did ye not know that I ought to be occupied in my Father's business?
English Revised Version
And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be in my Father's house?
Webster's Bible Translation
And he said to them, How is it that ye sought me? knew ye not that I must be about my Father's business?
Weymouth New Testament
"Why is it that you have been searching for me?" He replied; "did you not know that it is my duty to be engaged upon my Father's business?"
World English Bible
He said to them, "Why were you looking for me? Didn't you know that I must be in my Father's house?"
Young's Literal Translation
And he said unto them, 'Why is it that ye were seeking me? did ye not know that in the things of my Father it behoveth me to be?'
Parallel CommentariesMatthew Henry's Concise Commentary
2:41-52 It is for the honour of Christ that children should attend on public worship. His parents did not return till they had stayed all the seven days of the feast. It is well to stay to the end of an ordinance, as becomes those who say, It is good to be here. Those that have lost their comforts in Christ, and the evidences of their having a part in him, must bethink themselves where, and when, and how they lost them, and must turn back again. Those that would recover their lost acquaintance with Christ, must go to the place in which he has put his name; there they may hope to meet him. They found him in some part of the temple, where the doctors of the law kept their schools; he was sitting there, hearkening to their instructions, proposing questions, and answering inquiries, with such wisdom, that those who heard were delighted with him. Young persons should seek the knowledge of Divine truth, attend the ministry of the gospel, and ask such questions of their elders and teachers as may tend to increase their knowledge. Those who seek Christ in sorrow, shall find him with the greater joy. Know ye not that I ought to be in my Father's house; at my Father's work; I must be about my Father's business. Herein is an example; for it becomes the children of God, in conformity to Christ, to attend their heavenly Father's business, and make all other concerns give way to it. Though he was the Son of God, yet he was subject to his earthly parents; how then will the foolish and weak sons of men answer it, who are disobedient to their parents? However we may neglect men's sayings, because they are obscure, yet we must not think so of God's sayings. That which at first is dark, may afterwards become plain and easy. The greatest and wisest, those most eminent, may learn of this admirable and Divine Child, that it is the truest greatness of soul to know our own place and office; to deny ourselves amusements and pleasures not consistent with our state and calling.
Verse 49. - How is it that ye sought me? To the gently veiled reproach of Mary, Jesus replies, apparently with wonderment, with another question. It had come upon him so quietly and yet with such irresistible force that the temple of God was his real earthly home, that he marvelled at his mother's slowness of comprehension. Why should she have been surprised at his still lingering in the sacred courts? Did she not know who he was, and whence he came? Then he added, Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? There was an expression of Mary's which evidently distressed the Child Jesus. Godet even thinks that he discerns a kind of shudder in his quick reply to Mary's "thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing." "In my Father's house, where my Father's work is being done, there ought I to be busied. Didn't you know this?" But the twelve silent uneventful years of life at Nazareth, the poor home, the village carpentry, the natural development of the sacred Child, had gradually obscured for Mary and Joseph the memories of the infancy. They had not forgotten them, but time and circumstances had covered them with a veil. Now they were very gently reminded by the Boy's own quiet words of what had happened twelve years before. Scholars hesitate whether or not to adopt the rendering of the old Syriac Version, "in my Father's house," instead of the broader and vaguer "about my Father's business," as the Greek will allow either translation. It seems to us the best to retain the old rendering we love so well, "about my Father's business." The whole spirit of Jesus' after-teaching leads us irresistibly to this interpretation of the Master's first recorded saying.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And he said unto them, how is it that ye sought me?.... That is, with so much uneasiness and distress of mind, not trusting in the power and providence of God, to take care of him; and in other places, besides the temple, where they had been inquiring for him:
wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? or "in my Father's house", as the Syriac and Persic versions render it; where, as soon as you missed me, you might, at once, have concluded I was, and not have put yourselves to so much trouble and pains in seeking for me. Christ seems to tax them with ignorance, or, at least, forgetfulness of his having a Father in heaven, whose business he came to do on earth; and which they should have thought in their own minds he was now about, and so have made themselves easy. The business that Christ came about was to preach the Gospel, and which he afterwards performed with great clearness and fulness, with much power, majesty, and authority, with great constancy and diligence, with much concern for the souls of men, arid with great awfulness; and in which he took great delight, though he went through many dangers and risks of life; as also to work miracles in proof of his deity and Messiahship, and for the good of the bodies of men, and in which he was very assiduous, going about every where doing good this way: but the main, and principal part of his business was, to work out salvation for his people, by fulfilling the law, making reconciliation and atonement for their sins, and obtaining eternal redemption: this was a business which neither angels nor men could do; was very toilsome and laborious, and yet he delighted in it; nor did he desist from it until it was accomplished: and this is called his Father's business, because he contrived and assigned it to him; he called him to it, and sent him to perform; he enjoined it to him as man and mediator, and the glory of his perfections was concerned in it, and secured by it: and it was a business that Christ must be about, be concerned in, and perform, because he engaged to do it from all eternity; and because it was the will of his Father, which must be done, and was necessary in order to show himself dutiful and obedient; and because it was foretold in prophecy again and again and promised that it should be done; and because it could not be done by another. Now our Lord's conversing with the doctors, and which was a branch of his prophetic office, and was, no doubt, with a view to the good of the souls of men, and nothing less than miraculous, was a show, a prelude of, and a sort of an entrance upon the business he came about.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
49. about my Father's business—literally, "in" or "at My Fathers," that is, either "about My Father's affairs," or "in My Father's courts"—where He dwells and is to be found—about His hand, so to speak. This latter shade of meaning, which includes the former, is perhaps the true one, Here He felt Himself at home, breathing His own proper air. His words convey a gentle rebuke of their obtuseness in requiring Him to explain this. "Once here, thought ye I should so readily hasten away? Let ordinary worshippers be content to keep the feast and be gone; but is this all ye have learnt of Me?" Methinks we are here let into the holy privacies of Nazareth; for what He says they should have known, He must have given them ground to know. She tells Him of the sorrow with which His father and she had sought Him. He speaks of no Father but one, saying, in effect, My Father has not been seeking Me; I have been with Him all this time; "the King hath brought me into His chambers … His left hand is under my head, and His right hand doth embrace me" (So 1:4; 2:6). How is it that ye do not understand? (Mr 8:21).
Luke 2:49 Additional Commentaries
The Boy Jesus at the Temple
…48When they saw Him, they were astonished; and His mother said to Him, "Son, why have You treated us this way? Behold, Your father and I have been anxiously looking for You." 49And He said to them, "Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father's house?" 50But they did not understand the statement which He had made to them.…
When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, "Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you."
To those who sold doves he said, "Get these out of here! Stop turning my Father's house into a market!"
"My food," said Jesus, "is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.
"I have testimony weightier than that of John. For the works that the Father has given me to finish--the very works that I am doing--testify that the Father has sent me.
Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us,
Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.
After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
And he said to them, How is it that you sought me? knew you not that I must be about my Father's business?
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