7 Shepherds hear news about a baby in a manger.

Genesis 17:12; Exodus 13:2, 12; Leviticus 12:6–8; Isaiah 8:14; Luke 2:1–38

Why would Caesar order a census of Roman subjects (Luke 2:1–2 )?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why might it have been important to mention Governor Quirinius (Luke 2:1–2)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

What were the registration requirements (Luke 2:3)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why do you think Joseph took Mary with him when she was so close to giving birth (Luke 2:4–5)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Travelers often stayed in tents when visiting Jerusalem. Why might Joseph not have taken a tent (Luke 2:4–5)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How do you think Joseph arranged lodging in a stable (Luke 2:6–7)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why would an angel have been sent to shepherds outside Bethlehem and not to priests in the Temple (Luke 2:8–9)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How would you describe the angel’s appearance (Luke 2:8–9)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

What do you think the shepherds did when they first saw the angel (Luke 2:8–9)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why would the shepherds think the angel’s announcement was a significant event (Luke 2:10–12)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How large might the host of angels have been, and where did they appear (Luke 2:13–14)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Would the shepherds have left for Bethlehem immediately, or did they wait until morning (Luke 2:15)? Why?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

After entering Bethlehem, what steps might the shepherds have taken before finally finding where the baby was (Luke 2:16)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Who besides Mary and Joseph might have heard the shepherds’ story (Luke 2:17–18)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why would the shepherds have been amazed that they found everything exactly as the angel had said (Luke 2;20)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

What might Mary have thought about the shepherds’ story (Luke 2:19)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Who would have attended the circumcision ceremony in Bethlehem when Jesus was born (Luke 2:21)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

At the consecration ceremony at the Temple in Jerusalem, Joseph bought two turtle doves for the sacrifice, not a lamb (Luke 2:24). Where might he have bought them?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How do you think the Holy Spirit led Simeon to be at the Temple at the same time Joseph and Mary were there (Luke 2:25–27)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

In what way might the Holy Spirit have revealed to Simeon that before he died he would see the Messiah (Luke 2:26)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How would Simeon have recognized Mary and Joseph as the Messiah’s parents and not some other couple with a baby (Luke 2:27)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How would Simeon have greeted Joseph to explain his intrusion (Luke 2:27)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why would Mary and Joseph have been willing to surrender Jesus into Simeon’s arms (Luke 2:28)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

When and how might Simeon have received the words that he pronounced concerning the baby (Luke 2:28–35)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why did Joseph and Mary marvel at Simeon’s words (Luke 2:33)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

Why did Simeon say that Mary’s soul would be pierced like a sword (Luke 2:33–35)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

For how many years might Anna have been coming to the Temple every day (Luke 2:36–37)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

In all the days Anna spent at the Temple, what might she have been doing other than fasting and praying (Luke 2:37)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

How would Anna have known to impose on Simeon, Joseph, and Mary and say what she said (Luke 2:38)?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending

When Caesar Augustus ordered a census throughout the Roman Empire, everyone went to his own town to register. This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:1–3 When Caesar Augustus ordered a census throughout the Roman Empire (this was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria), everyone went to his own town to register.
King James

Luke 2:1–3 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

Joseph went to Bethlehem in Judea, the home of his ancestors, because he was a descendent of King David. He took Mary, his fiancée, who was pregnant and near the time of delivery, and left their village, Nazareth in Galilee. While they were in Bethlehem, Mary gave birth to a son, wrapped him snugly, and placed him in a manger because no lodging was available.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:4–7 Joseph went to Bethlehem in Judea, the home of his ancestors, because he was a descendent of King David. He took Mary, his fiancée, who was pregnant and near the time of delivery, and left their village, Nazareth in Galilee. While they were in Bethlehem, Mary gave birth to a son, wrapped him snugly, and placed him in a manger because no lodging was available.
King James

Luke 2:4–7 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

That night, in a nearby field, shepherds watching their flocks were terrified when an angel of God appeared in brilliant light.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:8–9 That night, in a nearby field, shepherds watching their flocks were terrified when an angel of God appeared in brilliant light.
King James

Luke 2:8–9 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

“Do not be afraid,” the angel said. “My good news will bring great joy to everyone. Today in the city of David, a savior has been born, the anointed Messiah. You will know who he is when you see a baby wrapped in cloth and lying in a manger.”

Eyewitness

Luke 2:10-12 “Do not be afraid,” the angel said. “My good news will bring great joy to everyone. Today in the city of David, a savior has been born, the anointed Messiah. You will know who he is when you see a baby wrapped in cloth and lying in a manger.”
King James

Luke 2:10–12 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

Suddenly, a host of angels appeared, praising God and singing, “Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace, good will toward men.”

Eyewitness

Luke 2:13–14 Suddenly, a host of angels appeared, praising God and singing, “Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace, good will toward men.”
King James

Luke 2:13–14 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

After the angels returned to Heaven, the shepherds said, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this miracle that God has revealed to us.” They left their flocks, hurried to the city, and found Joseph, Mary, and the baby, who was lying in a manger.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:14–18 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” After the angels returned to Heaven, the shepherds said, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this miracle that God has revealed to us.” They left their flocks, hurried to the city, and found Joseph, Mary, and the baby, who was lying in a manger. After seeing the baby, the shepherds told everyone what had happened. All who heard their story were amazed.
King James

Luke 2:14–18 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

As the shepherds returned to their fields, they praised and glorified God for all they had seen and heard, how everything had been exactly as the angel had said. They told everyone what had happened, and all who heard their story were amazed.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:17 After seeing the baby, the shepherds told everyone what had happened.
Luke 2:20 As the shepherds returned to their fields, they praised and glorified God for all they had seen and heard, how everything had been exactly as the angel had said.
King James

Luke 2:17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
Luke 2:20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Mary treasured the experience and pondered what it all might mean.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:19 Mary treasured the experience and pondered what it all might mean.
King James

Luke 2:19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

Eight days later, it was time for the circumcision ceremony and to name the baby Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived. After the thirty-three days required for purification were completed, Joseph and Mary took the baby to the Temple in Jerusalem. The Law required every firstborn male to be consecrated to God. Unable to afford the cost of a lamb for the consecration offering, they brought the alternative sacrifice of two doves, one for the burnt offering, the other for the purification offering.

Eyewitness

Genesis 17:12 All your male descendants are to be circumcised when they are eight days old, including everyone born in your household and also purchased slaves.
Exodus 13:2 Dedicate to me all your firstborn male children and animals. They belong to me.
Exodus 13:12 Dedicate to the Lord all firstborn male children and animals. They will belong to the Lord.
Leviticus 12:6–8 When the days of cleansing are completed, either for a son or daughter, the mother shall bring a yearling lamb for a burnt offering and a young pigeon or turtledove for a sin offering. She must bring her offering to the tabernacle entrance and give it to the priest who will offer it before the Lord and make atonement for her. She will be completely clean from her loss of blood. This is the law for any woman who gives birth. If she cannot afford a lamb, she may offer two doves or young pigeons, one for the burnt offering, the other for a sin offering. The priest will make atonement for her, and she will be clean.
Luke 2:21–24 Eight days later, it was time for the circumcision ceremony and to name the baby Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived. After the thirty-three days required for purification were completed, Joseph and Mary took the baby to the Temple in Jerusalem. The Law required every firstborn male to be consecrated to God. Unable to afford the cost of a lamb for the consecration offering, they brought the alternative sacrifice of two doves, one for the burnt offering, the other for the purification offering.
King James

Genesis 17:12 And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of thy seed.
Exodus 13:2 Sanctify unto me all the firstborn, whatsoever openeth the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and of beast: it is mine.
Exodus 13:12 That thou shalt set apart unto the Lord all that openeth the matrix, and every firstling that cometh of a beast which thou hast; the males shall be the Lord’s.
Leviticus 12:6–8 And when the days of her purifying are fulfilled, for a son, or for a daughter, she shall bring a lamb of the first year for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon, or a turtledove, for a sin offering, unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, unto the priest: Who shall offer it before the LORD, and make an atonement for her; and she shall be cleansed from the issue of her blood. This is the law for her that hath born a male or a female. And if she be not able to bring a lamb, then she shall bring two turtles, or two young pigeons; the one for the burnt offering, and the other for a sin offering: and the priest shall make an atonement for her, and she shall be clean.
Luke 2:21–24 And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb. And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord; (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;) And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.

At the same time, the Holy Spirit led a righteous man named Simeon to enter the Temple. Simeon had eagerly anticipated the arrival of the Messiah, who would restore Israel. The Holy Spirit had shown him that he would not die until he had seen God’s anointed. So he was there when the parents came to present their baby to God as the Law required.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:25–27 At the same time, the Holy Spirit led a righteous man named Simeon to enter the Temple. Simeon had eagerly anticipated the arrival of the Messiah, who would restore Israel. The Holy Spirit had shown him that he would not die until he had seen God’s anointed. So he was there when the parents came to present their baby to God as the Law required.
King James

Luke 2:25–27 And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law.

After taking the infant into his arms, he praised God, saying, “God, now that your promise is fulfilled, your servant can die in peace. With my own eyes, I have seen your salvation prepared for all people, a guiding light to the Gentiles and the glory of your people Israel.”

Eyewitness

Luke 2:28–32 After taking the infant into his arms, he praised God, saying, “God, now that your promise is fulfilled, your servant can die in peace. With my own eyes, I have seen your salvation prepared for all people, a guiding light to the Gentiles and the glory of your people Israel.”
King James

Luke 2:28–32 Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

As Joseph and Mary marveled at his words, he turned to Mary. “This child will cause the rise and fall of many in Israel. He will be a sign from God that many people will oppose as he reveals the thoughts of many hearts and pierces your own soul like a sword.”

Eyewitness

Isaiah 8:14 He can be either a place of safety or a stumbling block, a rock of offense to Judah and Israel, a trap or snare to the people of Jerusalem.
Luke 2:33–35 As Joseph and Mary marveled at his words, he turned to Mary. “This child will cause the rise and fall of many in Israel. He will be a sign from God that many people will oppose as he reveals the thoughts of many hearts and pierces your own soul like a sword.”
King James

Isaiah 8:14 And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
Luke 2:33–35 And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him. And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.

Anna, a prophet, daughter of Phanuel of the tribe of Asher, was also in the Temple. Her husband had died after seven years of marriage. From then until now, at the age of eighty-four, she had been a widow, who never left the Temple but stayed there from dawn to dusk, worshiping God in fasting and prayer. While Simeon was still speaking, she came to them and likewise praised God, saying Jesus was the child for whom all were looking because he would redeem Jerusalem.

Eyewitness

Luke 2:36-38 Anna, a prophet, daughter of Phanuel of the tribe of Asher, was also in the Temple. Her husband had died after seven years of marriage. From then until now, at the age of eighty-four, she had been a widow, who never left the Temple but stayed there from dawn to dusk, worshiping God in fasting and prayer. While Simeon was still speaking, she came to them and likewise praised God, saying Jesus was the child for whom all were looking because he would redeem Jerusalem.
King James

Luke 2:36–38 And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.