BIRTH AND YOUTH

was born in a normal way, no different from other babies, and Joseph and Mary were my natural parents. My mother told me that the story of an angel coming to her, informing her that she must submit to the birth of a child by the holy spirit, in reality, this never occurred. Interestingly, the concept of the virgin birth was borrowed from legends of the Egyptians, and Greek mythology and even the Buddha, who is said to have been conceived in a supernatural way, without the benefit of a mortal father.


When I was six weeks old, my parents fled with me to Egypt to avoid the soldiers of King Herod, who had been sent to destroy me. My father had a relative who lived in Heliopolis, a town near Cairo, and who helped our family get a start in this new land. We lived in Egypt for ten years and my mother and father had four other sons and three daughters while there. As the years passed, my mother became homesick for her people and wanted to return to her home in Galilee, which we did.


While growing up in Nazareth, I was a kind and gentle boy who loved my mother and father and my sisters and brothers. I was much like other boys with similar feelings and engaged in the usual activities of play. The only difference was that I was not sinful and did not engage in pranks or harmful deeds, because my soul was constituted to know of God's love at an early age.


My father Joseph was very eager for me to fulfill the old prophecies and become King of the Jews. He provided me with the funds necessary to learn the Jewish Scriptures, which I did with great thoroughness because of my desire to know the things that God had done for my people. I studied them while I gained increasing spiritual awareness and knowledge directly from my Heavenly Father.


At the age of twelve, I was never found being questioned by Jewish priests nor did I expound the law to them because I was not yet aware of my mission that was yet to come. I lived at home all these years of my life, working hard to help my father with his carpentry trade so that our family could prosper until I started on my public ministry.


By the time I was twenty, I began to wonder whether I might be the promised Messiah prophesied in the Scriptures, who would show my people the way to deliverance. The reality of this came later after frequent communions with God through my spiritual senses. I knew, in time, because God's love was growing in my soul that the prophecy of the New Heart (Ezekiel 18:31) was being fulfilled within me.