When the baby was eight days old, he was circumcised, and he was named Jesus. This name was given by the angel before the baby began to grow inside Mary. The time came for Mary and Joseph to do the things the law of Moses taught about being made pure. Joseph and Mary brought Jesus to Jerusalem so they could present him to the Lord (God). It is written in the law of the Lord (God): "When a mother's first baby is a boy, he shall be called 'special for the Lord.'" The law of the Lord also says that the people must give a sacrifice: "You must sacrifice two doves or two young pigeons." So Joseph and Mary went to Jerusalem to do this.
— Luke 2:21-24 NLT
Even though this was the world that Christ created, he came to this world and lived within its boundaries. His parents followed the requirements of the Old Testament Law and had him circumcised. After Mary's 40-day wait of purification, she and Joseph took Jesus to the Temple where they went through the ceremony of dedication and redemption of the firstborn. Their offering of birds rather than a lamb indicates their status as common or poorer folks. Luke makes perfectly clear that the people out of whom the hope of all people came were poor, devout, obedient, simple, and faithful. Even today, when people recognize they are not above God's call to obedience, and when they are faithful, God works to bring salvation. This is not a story about the power of the high and mighty of Jesus day, but of poor devout folks who were faithful to the Almighty!
O God, Master of the universe and ruler of my heart, give me a heart of faithful obedience like I see in Zechariah, Elizabeth, Joseph, and Mary. Help me raise up my children with examples of faithfulness and obedience. Banish arrogance and self-seeking, not only from my heart, but from all in my influence for generations to come. Use us as a place to give birth to hope through your Son in whose name I pray. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Galatians 4:4-5
- Matthew 5:17
- Philippians 2:5-8
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.