4: Presentation at the Temple
and Maturing Years (Lk 2:21-52)
Just as the birth narrative began
in the temple, it now concludes in the temple. The events that took place and the
words spoken about the child Jesus clearly point out that He is the Savior whom
had been waiting for. The passages we have studied thus far are mostly unique
to Luke. In a way that is characteristic of Luke, the stories carefully depict
the individuals who played a part in the narratives, including their character,
words, feelings, and interactions.
“For my eyes have seen Your salvation Which You
have prepared before the face of all peoples, A light to bring revelation to
the Gentiles, And the glory of Your people Israel” (2:30-32).
“And He said to them, ‘Why did you seek Me? Did
you not know that I must be about My Father's business?’” (2:49).
Did You Know…?
Days of her purification (2:22): According to
Jewish law a woman became ceremonially unclean on the birth of a child. On the
eighth day the child was circumcised (cf. 1:59; Gen 17:12), after which the
mother was unclean an additional thirty-three days—sixty-six if the child was
female (Lev 12:1-5).3/848
The hymn of Simeon (2:29-32) is known as Nunc
Dimittis, from the first words of the Latin version, meaning “Now dismiss.”
Feast of Passover (2:41): The law commanded that
all adult males should attend the three major annual feasts in
Jerusalem—Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles. Doing so was not possible for
many because of the distance, but most tried to attend the Passover.
Twelve years old (2:42): With puberty, a boy
became a “son of the covenant.” 3/851 At age 12 boys began preparing
to take their places in the religious community the following year.5/1540
1. What does verse 24 imply about
the financial status of Joseph and Mary (cf. Lev 12:7-8)?
2. How is the narrative of the
presentation of Jesus significant?
3 Describe Simeon and his role in
4. What do Simeon’s words in 31
and 32 tell us about the gospel?
5. Explain Simeon’s words to Mary
6. Describe Anna and her role in
7. Why were Simeon and Anna an
important part of the narrative?
8. Based on the descriptions of
Jesus’ growth (40 and 52), what characterize a sound and well-rounded growth?
9.What significance does this
10a. What did Jesus mean when He
said, “Did you not know that I must be about My Father's business?”
10b.How can we imitate the Lord
Jesus and “be about my Father’s business” (also translated as “in my Father’s
11. Jesus returned to Nazareth
with His parents and was subject to them, even though He had told them that He
must be about His Father’s business. What can we learn here about our
responsibilities toward God and toward our family?