After the circumstances of the birth of Jesus, the Gospels fall silent and give us no information about Jesus' upbringing. What was life like in Nazareth? What was it like for Jesus to be a toddler and to play with his friends? What was it like when He lost His first tooth? This episode examines what Jesus' life could have been like throughout his early childhood.
All resources referencing Luke
Joseph wakes Mary and Jesus and they all depart Bethlehem for Egypt by night. It was not too long after their departure that Herod ordered the execution of the male children in Bethlehem in his attempt to kill the newly born Jewish king. In addition to looking at these details from Matthew 2, the last few minutes of this episode summarizes the steps of Mary and Joseph's journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem for the census all the way to their journey out of Egypt to live in Nazareth.
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem, "wise men" from the East came to visit Jesus and present gifts before Him. Who were the "wise men"? Where were they from, why did they come looking for the king of the Jews, and were there only three of them? The answers from Scripture may surprise you. This episode begins to look at the story of the Magi from Matthew 2.
Luke tells us about another person who meets Mary, Joseph, and Jesus in the Temple when Jesus was about 40 days old - an aged widow named Anna. She too was righteous and waiting for God to redeem Jerusalem just as the Scriptures had spoken. Anna was a regular attender of the public and private Temple services, and is presented as yet another picture of the remnant of Israel who were waiting for the fulfillment of God's promises to the nation.
Luke 2 tells us about an aged Jew, Simeon, who had been eagerly waiting for the fulfillment of all of God's promises to Israel. The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that the child Jesus would be the One who would bring all that the Prophets had promised to pass. But Jesus would be much more - according to Simeon, He would divide Israel and cause the truth about how Israel really felt about God to be exposed.
As Mary and Joseph are in the Temple to offer their sacrifice and present Jesus before a priest, a righteous man named Simeon approaches them and takes up Jesus in his arms. Luke tells us that Simeon was "waiting for the consolation of Israel", and that the Spirit had told him that he would not die before he saw the king ("the Lord's Christ") who bring that "consolation" to pass. This episode examines the details of Luke 2 verses 25 through 32.
When Jesus was eight days old, He was circumcised according to the Law. 32 days later, Mary and Joseph travel to Jerusalem to make a sacrifice for their purification and present Jesus before a priest. Why did Jesus have to be circumcised and what does it have to do with the covenant God made with His people? What were these days like? Find out in this episode as we look at Luke 2.
Lowly shepherds are given the "good news" that a baby who was "Christ the Lord" had been born in Bethlehem. Before they could even compose themselves, Luke 2 tells us that a multitude of the "heavenly host" appeared to them in the sky in a valley just outside Bethlehem. But are these angels really choirs that are "sweetly singing o'er the plains"? The answer the Bible gives may surprise you. Find out in this episode!
God could have announced the birth of Jesus to the elite ruling class in Jerusalem, but He chose to tell the outcasts of Jewish society. A lowly band of shepherds were the first to hear of the birth of "Christ the Lord" in Bethlehem. This episode discusses the political and military implications of the weighty phrase, "Christ the Lord" and links it to the developing story of the Gospels.
An extended supplemental episode on the meaning of "Messiah" / "Christ" can be watched here...
In today's culture, "Christ" is often a synonym for "Jesus" or perhaps His last name. "Messiah" is a synonym for "Savior" and often just means "the one who died on the cross for us". While there is some measure of truth to those things, "Christ" and "Messiah" have largely been misunderstood. You may be surprised when you find out what the Bible is really saying when the scriptures use those words!
This video is a supplement to Episode 21 of Opening Up the Gospels. Watch the original episode...