Luke 2:22-38: Jesus presented at the Temple

Jesus being presented at the temple is usually not seen as a very important part of the birth narratives in the gospels, but it is important for several reasons. Jesus presentation of the temple gives the final birth hymn, the Nunc Dimittis, that goes along with the Benedictus; the Magnificat; and the Gloria in Excelsius. It is the first visit of Christ to the temple. It is significant that He who is the temple, and the Word tabernacling among us comes to the temple and certain Spirit led things confirm His identity and purpose. This visit is important because so far we have had priests confirm Christ’s identity, (Zechariah), we have had angels confirm His identity, (Christ the Lord), the shepherds have born testimony to Him, and now we have some of the righteous remnant of the OT, a saint and a prophet led by the Spirit bear testimony to Him. In particular the Spirit revealed song and message of Simeon is revealing. Firstly, we have the first explicit mention of God’s good news for the Gentile world, v32. And secondly, we have in this joyful and celebratory portion a clear indication of the conflict, rejection and sorrow that must come, v34-35.

As we look at this section we will look at it under three headings, firstly, Jesus righteous parents looking at how they were obedient to the law; secondly, the righteous remnant observing the characters of Simeon and Anna in their obedience, and finally, we want to look at righteousness rejected as Simeon foretells in ominous tones the coming conflict and sorrow.