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The Jesus Mysteries, Where was Jesus before he was 30?

Updated on September 11, 2016

What we don't know about Jesus

It's extraordinary what we don't know about the most important/influential man in history, Jesus. There is no description of what he looked like, what he did between the ages of 12 and 30. He left no writings, he doesn't appear in any contemporary documents or histories except for a few vague references.So we are almost wholly dependent on the Bible, yet that wasn't written as a modern "autobiography" or rigorous academic history book it was written as a religious work and didn't take its final shape for several centuries after the death of Christ..

So 2000 years later the Bible is still being interpreted, retranslated, analyzed by computer, believers argue with each other and with skeptics. But how is it possible that even the basic premises of Christianity are still under debate it's an extraordinary situation.

All this leads some to wild speculation, learn more below. The lens tries to be even handed and not take a point of view as far as that is possible.

Click here for List of things we don't know about Jesus Christ

What Triggered my Interest : Matthew 13:55

His own townsfolk try to kill Jesus

Coming to his hometown, he began teaching the people in their synagogue, and they were amazed. "Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers?" they asked. "Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother's name Mary, and aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Aren't all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?" And they took offense at him.

But Jesus said to them, "Only in their own towns and in their own homes are prophets without honor."

And he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.

This whole passage is odd but authentic, wouldn't you expect him to be warmly greeted in his hometown? But what has happened to Jesus in the missing 18 years where has he been, what has he learned, what are his miracles?

And according to Luke 4:28-30

All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him down the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way

List of Jesus Mysteries and Enigmas

  1. Only one mention in the Bible of what he did before the age of thirty!

    At the age of 12 Jesus astonishes his parents by arguing knowledgeably with elders in the Temple'. Other than that there is no mention of his life not even a cover all "he grew up just like any other young man" whatever he did is simply omitted.

  2. He left not one page of writing
  3. He is mentioned in no contemporary document or history

    The first references appear decades after his death and even then are passing references.

  4. What Did He Look Like?

    Surely that would be the thing most struck you. Was he tall or short, fat or thin? That would be most asked by Christians.

    (Do not get confused by Isaiah : 53 : 2 There was nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance, nothing to attract us to him which was written 8 centuries before Jesus)

  5. What about his brothers and sisters

    We know the name of James who carried on his work, but nothing at all about his sisters. Catholics tried to argue that he had none as it is troublesome for the concept of the Virgin Mary.

  6. No exact dates

    We don't know exact dates for his birth, death and the start of his preaching. Of course dates were generally problematic at the time but did no one at the time not wish to fix these dates more exactly.

  7. Resurrection Inconsistencies

    The four gospels differ on many essential points, this would require a lens all on its own. e.g. was the Stone already rolled back from the tomb.

  8. He is not mentioned in the Dead Sea Scrolls

    There seems to have been no reference to Jesus in the scrolls even there are many wild theories concerning them, most of the scrolls predate Jesus of course.

  9. Rejected by his own "Chosen People"

    Why doesn't Jesus figure in Jewish History?

  10. In Mark Jesus just appears fully grown

    Mark begins with John the Baptist predicting the arrival of one much greater than he. When Jesus is baptised by John he receives the Holy Spirit implying that he hadn't had it before.

  11. What did Jesus do in the 40 days between Resurrection and Ascension?

    Practically nothing is known about these 40 days other than he continued to teach the Apostles. This is not controversial, there just isn't much to accept or deny.

  12. What Was His Attitude to Marriage?

    We learn nothing of Jesus's own attitude to women or whether

  13. What Did Jesus Like to Eat?

    We don't know any personal thing about Jesus what he liked to eat, wear or go. I once met a teenager who wanted to know what music Jesus liked. Was this sort of information considered unworthy and censored?

  14. St Paul makes no reference to anything Jesus did

    Paul never mentions events during Jesus's life before his crucifixion or aspects of his teaching i.e. to anything that that might be found in the four Gospels before the resurrection.

  15. Laughing

    Jesus is never recorded as laughing in the New testament. He does weep however.

The Lost Years of Jesus - The lost legends of Issa

The Gospels do not say where Jesus was between the age of 12 and 30. But ancient Buddhist manuscripts say Jesus left Palestine and traveled to India, Nepal, Ladakh and Tibet during the "lost years." For the first time, Prophet brings together the eyewitness accounts of four people who have seen these remarkable manuscripts--plus three variant translations of the texts.

The Bible tells us that Joseph of Arimathea gave up his tomb for Jesus. Tradition tells us that he was actually the Uncle of the Virgin Mary, and therefore the Great-Uncle of Jesus. It is also believed that Joseph of Arimathea traveled to the British Isles shortly after the resurrection of Christ, and built the first Christian Church above ground there. Tradition also tells us that Jesus may have spent much of his young adult life (between 13 and 30) traveling the world with his Great Uncle Joseph. Is this the origin of the legend that Jesus came to the British Isles?

The Unknown Life of Jesus Christ - by Nicolas Notovitch

Nicolas Notovitch was a Russian aristocrat, Cossack officer, spy, and journalist known for his contention that during the years of Jesus Christ's life missing from the Bible, he followed traveling merchants abroad into India and the Hemis Monastery in Ladakh, Nepal, where he studied Buddhism. While recovering from a broken leg at the at the monastery of Himis, Notovich discovered the text to The Life of Issa and realized that it recounted the lost years of Jesus. This controversial book shows where many of Jesus' beliefs comes from, while at the same time showing that Jesus was already well on his way to his fundamental beliefs at a very young age.



One of the biggest and best-preserved hoard of ancient sealed books, which had been secretly hidden for centuries, has been discovered in Jordan. These could be relics from the Jerusalem Church of the first century. Early indications are that the books date from the first century CE/AD and could be some of the earliest Christian documents. Leading academics consider the find to be even more pivotal than the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947.

The hoard consists of a collection of ring-bound books (codices) made of lead and of copper. Many of them are sealed on all sides. Scrolls, tablets and other artefacts, including an incense bowl, were also found at the same site. Some of the lead pages are written in a form of archaic Hebrew script with ancient messianic symbols. Some of the writing appears to be in a form of code.

These finds are still wrapped in mystery but if they did belong to the Nazarenes ie Jesus's Jewish followers then the information they reveal could be revolutionary

The Jesus Puzzle: Did Christianity Begin with a Mythical Christ?

Why are the events of the Gospel story, and its central character Jesus of Nazareth, not found in the New Testament epistles? Why does Paul's divine Christ seem to have no connection to the Gospel Jesus, but closely resembles the many pagan savior gods of the time who lived only in myth? Why, given the spread of Christianity across the Roman Empire in the first century, did only one Christian community compose a story of Jesus' life and death-the Gospel of Mark-while every other Gospel simply copied and reworked the first one? Why is every detail in the Gospel story of Jesus' trial and crucifixion drawn from passages in the Old Testament? The answer to these and other questions surrounding the New Testament will come as a shock to those who imagine that the origins of Christianity and the figure of Jesus are securely represented by Christian tradition and the Gospels. With the arrival of the third millennium, the time has come to face the stunning realization that for the last 1900 years, Christianity has revered a founder and icon of the faith who probably never existed.

The consensus is still that a historical Jesus did exist, but this book points out many difficult points for Christians to answer.

Why We Know so Little about the Historical Jesus - Why Biblical Research is Difficult

The Roman destruction of Judea

Thirty years or so after the death of Jesus the Jews revolted against Rome (First Jewish-Roman War 66-70 AD, sometimes called The Great Revolt) the Romans responded by utterly crushing Judea. The temple was burnt and anything valuable was looted. There were further revolts which lead to the Jewish diaspora. We shall never know how many documents of the preceding centuries including documents of the era of Jesus were lost.

It would seem that the Nazarenes that is to say Jewish followers of Jesus also disappear from history at this time and this lead to Christianity to being defined by St Paul.

The Q Document (Q for Quelle)

Nineteenth century New Testament scholars who rejected the traditional perspective of the priority of Matthew in favor of Marcan priority speculated that the authors of Matthew and Luke drew the material they have in common with the Gospel of Mark from that Gospel. Matthew and Luke, however, also share large sections of text which are not found in Mark. They suggested that neither Gospel drew upon the other, but upon a second common source, termed the Q (Wikipedia)

You will learn that the existence of this document is controversial.

The Historicity of Jesus

This book tackles all the thorny issues. Jesus had brothers and sisters how does this affect the story of "Virgin Birth". The flight into Egypt was necessitated by the "massacre of the innocents" but there is no other record of any such massacre. The census recorded by Luke could not have occurred at the date specified and so on.

The Gospel of St Thomas, Philip and Mary - The Lost Gospels

In December 1945 some Bedouins discovered a well preserved early Christian, non-canonical sayings-gospel near Nag Hammadi, Egypt.

The Gospel of Philip is one of the Gnostic Gospels, a text of New Testament apocrypha, dating back to around the third century was also discovered at the same time as part of the Nag Hammadi library.

The Lost Gospel of Peter

In 1521 in Oxfordshire some men were branded on the face for reading the Gospel of St Peter and warned they could be burned at the stake for further offenses.

Did Jesus learn Magick in Egypt?

Bishop Celsus claimed that Jesus learned Magick in Egypt and this was the basis for the miracles. A young medical student at the University of Edinburgh in the 1690s called Thomas Aikenhead was executed for proclaiming this, he was the last person to be executed for blasphemy in the UK. You will have to decide yourself whether the claim that Jesus learned Magick In Egypt is a Medieval invention.

Analyze the Gospel of Mark

Mark is generally agreed to be the oldest Canonical Gospel. Why not read Mark again with the aim of finding out what you can learn about Jesus as a person. It doesn't take long especially if you skip the parables which most people know by heart. You will probably find you learn very little, Jesus chooses his disciples, performs miracles, resolves some theological difficulties, predicts his own death and then is executed and resurrected. It is almost as though it was written by his campaign manager. But as I said this is weighty matter and I claim no special expertise.

Two thousand years after Jesus Christ debate still rages, libraries are full of books analyzing The Bible. Archaeologists are still making new discoveries, ancient texts are still being discovered or decoded, computers are used to analyze the text. The greatest minds are still undertaking research. This all means that the study of religion is as actual a subject as say research on replacing fossil fuels and just as important for society.

At least we now live in a society adult enough to allow discussion and alternative viewpoints. My current view is that when the the contents of the canonical New Testament were first decided four hundred years after Jesus the clerics knew that there were significant inconsistencies between the gospels but that the truth was already lost and they conscientiously decided the texts as they were, resisting any temptation to iron them out. May be this is the reason that for centuries it was forbidden for non-educated people to read the Bible.

When did you become interested in this subject?

What is your opinion or belief?

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    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @Normyo Yonormyo: your constitution is as flawed as the supposed jesus, only difference is, they say have faith for jesus, and americans make ammendments..................

    • rawwwwwws lm profile image

      rawwwwwws lm 5 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this wonderful lens. May our Lord continue to bless you and this lens! Blessed.

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 5 years ago

      @SandyDell: You more I research this topic the less I am sure of!!

    • SandyDell profile image

      Sandy Dell 5 years ago from Lenore, Idaho

      Very interesting lens and discussion. I am grateful for the ability to talk and ponder this subject without being ridiculed for a difference of opinion. Since we don't really know for sure, no one is right and no one is wrong. Sharing of research on a subject such as this is always interesting to me. Thanks for taking the time to share with us!

    • Normyo Yonormyo profile image

      Normyo Yonormyo 5 years ago

      @theinquirer2: That is very true, there wasn't even the Roman Journal to check.

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 5 years ago

      @Normyo Yonormyo: I think we should also remember that in those days researchers couldn't go to the library and get out all the back issues of "the Jerusalem Times"

    • Normyo Yonormyo profile image

      Normyo Yonormyo 5 years ago

      @theinquirer2: I would assume that ordinary Christians had to do it with word of mouth. But that might also declare why the church choose certain gospels, they were meant to justify the christian faith for those in power, as they probably would have been able to read and write. This is off course a very cynical stance when it comes to christianity the religion. But if you look at the catholic church as the heir of the Roman Empire, you might understand the choices made. And if you look at how nowadays politics often form the public opinion by getting certain stories into the public eye and hiding others, you might understand why certain stories in the new testament were more a political choice than a choice to spread the good message.

      And your right it should have been Gnostic.

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 5 years ago

      @alexbricker: The problem is that we don't know why they chose one gospel over another, we don't know who wrote the gospels. Did ordinary Christians have access to any gospels at all or was it word of mouth?

    • Normyo Yonormyo profile image

      Normyo Yonormyo 5 years ago

      @alexbricker: If you want to know why certain evangelical books are in the new testament you might consider the idea that it was a way of forming the thoughts of christians. So the choice for certain stories has more to do with the wish to create a power base than spreading the word. That idea is supported by the fact that a lot of agnostic christian ideas and groups where banned and outlawed the moment christianity became the state religion of the Roman empire. Btw the first council by Constantine the great, gave the order to decide which books should become part of the christian bible, because before that there seem to have been around 400 or 500 evangelic books.

    • alexbricker profile image

      alexbricker 5 years ago

      In civility, I disagree. I do like that you presented your information. Not so sure that the gospels were necessarily inconsistent. If they were inconsistent, why did the early believers choose to include them? I have been interested in this subject since undergrad. I minored in anthropology and loved learning about ancient history, even if I disagree with different scholars and popular books out there such as novels like the Da Vinci Code.

    • Normyo Yonormyo profile image

      Normyo Yonormyo 5 years ago

      There might be two reasons why we do not know anything about Jesus life between 12 and 30. The first being that it is not about Jesus, what Jesus is doing. He did not try to get himself in to the picture, but loving ourselves and others. The second reason might be that not knowing about Jesus makes him much easier to use as a figure head for a religion. It makes him mysterious and vague enough to connect him to all kinds of ideas that later religious leaders want to connect to him. It was Jesus idea. Jesus wanted that.

      It is a pity that the first notion, the content is more important than the form, makes it possible for the second notion to work. But maybe that is the price important ideas have to pay if they want to get spread around. Look at the American constitution, because nobody can claim it, it has worked the last two hundred years. If Washington or any of the other founding fathers could have said: "The American constitution is my idea," it probably would have faltered within the first ten years of it existence. As somebody would have come up with information why it was bad to follow the ideas expressed in the constitution, because the person who had the idea was bad.

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 5 years ago

      @sherioz: I find it fascinating that that discoveries are still being made, old versions of Gospels still being found ... so many new scientific techniques are available

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      sherioz 5 years ago

      As a Jew I am fascinated with the life of Jesus. I view him as a revolutionary and the possibility that he journeyed farther east into Asia fits in perfectly.

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I too think that it is now possible to discuss the origins of Christianity (relatively) calmly that new truths will be discovered.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      There is no argument that the Jews knew Jesus but there is recorded evidence

      that he traveled to other countries and his message was received by others as he interacted with them and their culture.I believe the truths are still unfolding and the mysteries will amaze us when they are all finally known .

    • profile image

      eilvugimatria 5 years ago

      "The entire life of Jesus was known to the Jews. They knew Him from boyhood to adulthood, until the time He started to preach the Gospel. When he preached, they marveled at Him asking..." You may follow this link at mcgi(dot)org topic blog articles was_jesus_christ_an_essene. Hope you'll b enlightened brother. Happy reading. By

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      out of curiosity i just wanted to find out what Jesus's life was like before he started preaching at age 30. this is because his life before that is never mentioned anywhere. I was told when young that he used to work with his earthly father Joseph in the carpentry but seem to see this in all the above texts. 2ndly, i wd like more info about this Jesus being cited in India or there about. how credible is this info? Lastly, these sealed scrolls found and are still sealed, why does it take so long to open them and analyse them and how may the impact on christianity the way we know it?

    • jimbarnes lm profile image

      jimbarnes lm 6 years ago

      i believe every word in the bible is true!

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 6 years ago

      @anonymous: I just wonder why Jesus's early years were omitted from the Bible, was it because it was not known or because it wasn't approved of. What is clear from the Bible is that the people of Jesus's hometown haven't seen him for a considerable period i'e. he has been somewhere and returned.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: Jesus' miracles were certainly much more significant than a mere magical trick. It must have been quite hard for any ruler to acknowledge a power greater than his own and one that none other could replicate.

      The Holy Bible is a history book and it has survived over thousands of years. The reason for Jesus birth was to be the savior of mankind. His short lived life was of little meaning but, his death is of great importance. I have faith that his message and the Kingdom of God will come to fruition as Prophecy unfolds in our time !

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      Lorelei Cohen 6 years ago from Canada

      My first sprinkling of angel dust on this lens has long worn off so I am back once again to scatter a little more. It is my quest today to bless all the lenses which I blessed in October of 2010. You are on this list.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      The Lost Years of Jesus

      The lost legends of Issa

      The Gospels do not say where Jesus was between the age of 12 and 30. But ancient Buddhist manuscripts say Jesus left Palestine and traveled to India, Nepal, Ladakh and Tibet during the "lost years." For the first time, Prophet brings together the eyewitness accounts of four people who have seen these remarkable manuscripts--plus three variant translations of the texts.

      I have read The lost Years of Jesus and now reading The lost legends of Issa. They are very eye opening and deep in content.I am more certain than ever that Jesus made his life on earth count for all people of the world and when the time is right the truth will be known. His hand has been responsible for the many miracles around the world throughout the ages.The understanding of the whole plan for mankind is far beyond what Christianity alone teaches .. The books are being opened and the mysteries will unfold to those who seek truth !

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      The Lost Years of Jesus

      The lost legends of Issa

      The Gospels do not say where Jesus was between the age of 12 and 30. But ancient Buddhist manuscripts say Jesus left Palestine and traveled to India, Nepal, Ladakh and Tibet during the "lost years." For the first time, Prophet brings together the eyewitness accounts of four people who have seen these remarkable manuscripts--plus three variant translations of the texts.

    • theinquirer2 profile image

      theinquirer2 6 years ago

      @TonyPayne: Poddys,

      It is a very interesting subject and once you start researching the more you realize there is to know!

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 6 years ago from Southampton, UK

      It's definitely an interesting puzzle, and for all we know Jesus could have been abducted by aliens... Seriously though, if some of the ancient writings from Sumeria (as translated and interpreted by Zecharia Sitchin) are true, some of the "Gods Of Old", the Annunaki, were still around at the time that Jesus was born, and could have been involved in his birth, or his teachings during those missing years. I find the idea that he was in Egypt, or out East in India or Tibet for example, intriguing, because there he could have learned many wisdoms that would astound the people back home in Judea. However, who would have taken him there and why? That is an interesting question on it's own.

      One thing is certain, and it's something very sad. The early Christian Church and the Catholic Church have always controlled what they want the people to believe. It's very possible that some information has been destroyed over the centuries by the church just so to ensure that Christianity went down the path that they wanted.

      Certainly the Da Vinci Code is based on this theory, even though there is no proof that this is anything other than a book, but who really knows the truth any more.

      I find it really sad that after 2,000 years we are really no closer to knowing exactly what happened to Jesus during those lost years. Excellent lens, intriguing topic, blessed.

    • KANEsUgAr profile image

      KANEsUgAr 6 years ago

      Great lens, you know at the vatican, they have a cloth with jesuses face in it. Its supposed to be the cloth used to cover his dead body.

    • Philippians468 profile image

      Philippians468 7 years ago

      great lens! lets continue to focus on what we do know: that God loves us and He died for us! cheers

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 7 years ago from Canada

      This lens has been blessed by a squid angel this morning. Have a wonderful day :)