"Great Catch of Fish," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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Simeon and Anna
Luke 2:8-20 Commentary
by Ruth Anne Reese
This is the third time in the opening chapters of Luke that we encounter the angel of the Lord.
First Gabriel speaks to Zachariah and gives him the promise of a son. This promise was made and fulfilled in Luke 1 and resulted in wonder and fear for those who saw it. Then, Gabriel spoke with Mary and promised her a son -- a promise now come to pass. On the same night when Mary’s promise comes to pass, the messenger appears a third time. By this time, we have come to trust that words spoken by angels are the message of God and are worthy of trusting response.
This third visit is similar as once again people find themselves afraid in the presence of one sent from God, but it is also different. The messenger appears with the Lord’s glory that shines around the shepherds. And their response is terror. The “glory of the Lord” is an Old Testament phrase referring to God’s presence and strength. It is often associated with light and shining.
One of the first ...
| Bible Text
2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
Narrative Lectionary 061: Nativity
December 25, 2012
Join Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Mary Shore, and Craig Koester for "I Love to Tell the Story," a weekly conversation on the narrative lectionary. This week's readings are: Luke 2:8-20 or Matthew 2:1-12 and Psalm 123:1-2 or 123:2.