THE Sacred Record gives us but a single event in the early life of our Saviour from the time his parents returned to Nazareth to his baptism by John at the age of thirty. Every year Joseph and Mary attended the feast of the Passover at Jerusalem. On one occasion, as they set out on their journey homeward, Jesus tarried behind at Jerusalem. Supposing him to be in the company, they felt no uneasiness till, at the close of the day, they discovered upon a diligent search, that he was nowhere to be found. Returning in haste to Jerusalem, they found him in the temple, conversing with the learned doctors of the law, who were astonished at the wisdom and judgment manifested in his questions and answers; for he was then but twelve years of age. 

His anxious mother expressed her surprise at his being contented to remain away from them for three whole days; but he quietly replied, "Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?" He went with his parents, however, to Nazareth, where, to use the simple words of inspiration, he was subject unto them. 

It were well if this brief but touching testimony could be truly applied to the youth and children of the present day.

Archelaus, the son of Herod the Great, reigned about ten years, when he was removed by the Roman government, on account of the many complaints that had been made against him. 

An important change now took place in the government of Judea. It was reduced to a Roman province, brought more immediately under the authority of Roman laws, and controlled by a Roman governor. The chief seat of government for that part of the country was removed from Jerusalem to Caesarea, a new city built on the seacoast by Herod in honor of Caesar. Thus it was that the scepter departed from Judah, and a lawgiver from between his feet; for Shiloh had come, and the prophetic words of the dying patriarch had been fulfilled.  Augustus Caesar died A. D. 14, and was succeeded by Tiberius, his adopted son. During the last years of Augustus, Tiberius had been associated with him in conducting the affairs of the empire; and it is from the time of his beginning to reign with Augustus, that Luke reckons in giving the date of John's public ministry.  It was in the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar's reign that "the word of God came unto John, the son of Zacharias, in the wilderness; and he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins;" "and saying, Repent ye, for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand. For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.” 

“And the same John had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey. Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judea, and all the region round about Jordan, and were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins. But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?" "Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father; for I say unto you. That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees; every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire. And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then? He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise. 

Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master what shall we do? And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you. And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages. And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not, John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose; he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable."