Bible: Lk 1:26-2:52
Birth Announcement of Jesus the Messiah
1:26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, 1 the angel Gabriel 2 was sent by 3 God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, 4 1:27 to a virgin engaged 5 to a man whose name was Joseph, a descendant of David, 6 and the virgin’s name was Mary. 1:28 The 7 angel 8 came 9 to her and said, “Greetings, favored one, 10 the Lord is with you!” 11 1:29 But 12 she was greatly troubled 13 by his words and began to wonder about the meaning of this greeting. 14 1:30 So 15 the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, 16 Mary, for you have found favor 17 with God! 1:31 Listen: 18 You will become pregnant 19 and give birth to 20 a son, and you will name him 21 Jesus. 22 1:32 He 23 will be great, 24 and will be called the Son of the Most High, 25 and the Lord God will give him the throne of his father 26 David. 1:33 He 27 will reign over the house of Jacob 28 forever, and his kingdom will never end.” 1:34 Mary 29 said to the angel, “How will this be, since I have not had sexual relations with 30 a man?” 1:35 The angel replied, 31 “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow 32 you. Therefore the child 33 to be born 34 will be holy; 35 he will be called the Son of God.
1:36 “And look, 36 your relative 37 Elizabeth has also become pregnant with 38 a son in her old age – although she was called barren, she is now in her sixth month! 39 1:37 For nothing 40 will be impossible with God.” 1:38 So 41 Mary said, “Yes, 42 I am a servant 43 of the Lord; let this happen to me 44 according to your word.” 45 Then 46 the angel departed from her.
Mary and Elizabeth
1:39 In those days 47 Mary got up and went hurriedly into the hill country, to a town of Judah, 48 1:40 and entered Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. 1:41 When 49 Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped 50 in her 51 womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 52 1:42 She 53 exclaimed with a loud voice, 54 “Blessed are you among women, 55 and blessed is the child 56 in your womb! 1:43 And who am I 57 that the mother of my Lord should come and visit me? 1:44 For the instant 58 the sound of your greeting reached my ears, 59 the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 60 1:45 And blessed 61 is she who believed that 62 what was spoken to her by 63 the Lord would be fulfilled.” 64
Mary’s Hymn of Praise
1:47 and my spirit has begun to rejoice 69 in God my Savior,
1:48 because he has looked upon the humble state of his servant. 70
1:49 because he who is mighty 74 has done great things for me, and holy is his name;
The Birth of John
1:57 Now the time came 92 for Elizabeth to have her baby, 93 and she gave birth to a son. 1:58 Her 94 neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown 95 great mercy to her, and they rejoiced 96 with her.
1:59 On 97 the eighth day 98 they came to circumcise the child, and they wanted to name 99 him Zechariah after his father. 1:60 But 100 his mother replied, 101 “No! He must be named 102 John.” 103 1:61 They 104 said to her, “But 105 none of your relatives bears this name.” 106 1:62 So 107 they made signs to the baby’s 108 father, 109 inquiring what he wanted to name his son. 110 1:63 He 111 asked for a writing tablet 112 and wrote, 113 “His name is John.” And they were all amazed. 114 1:64 Immediately 115 Zechariah’s 116 mouth was opened and his tongue 117 released, 118 and he spoke, blessing God. 1:65 All 119 their neighbors were filled with fear, and throughout the entire hill country of Judea all these things were talked about. 1:66 All 120 who heard these things 121 kept them in their hearts, 122 saying, “What then will this child be?” 123 For the Lord’s hand 124 was indeed with him.
Zechariah’s Praise and Prediction
1:68 “Blessed 127 be the Lord God of Israel,
1:70 as he spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from long ago, 134
and from the hand of all who hate us.
and to remember his holy covenant 140 –
This oath grants 143
1:74 that we, being rescued from the hand of our 144 enemies,
may serve him without fear, 145
1:79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, 159
to guide our feet into the way 160 of peace.”
The Census and the Birth of Jesus
2:1 Now 165 in those days a decree 166 went out from Caesar 167 Augustus 168 to register 169 all the empire 170 for taxes. 2:2 This was the first registration, taken when Quirinius was governor 171 of Syria. 2:3 Everyone 172 went to his own town 173 to be registered. 2:4 So 174 Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth 175 in Galilee to Judea, to the city 176 of David called Bethlehem, 177 because he was of the house 178 and family line 179 of David. 2:5 He went 180 to be registered with Mary, who was promised in marriage to him, 181 and who was expecting a child. 2:6 While 182 they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 183 2:7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in strips of cloth 184 and laid him in a manger, 185 because there was no place for them in the inn. 186
The Shepherds’ Visit
2:8 Now 187 there were shepherds 188 nearby 189 living out in the field, keeping guard 190 over their flock at night. 2:9 An 191 angel of the Lord 192 appeared to 193 them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were absolutely terrified. 194 2:10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! Listen carefully, 195 for I proclaim to you good news 196 that brings great joy to all the people: 2:11 Today 197 your Savior is born in the city 198 of David. 199 He is Christ 200 the Lord. 2:12 This 201 will be a sign 202 for you: You will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger.” 203 2:13 Suddenly 204 a vast, heavenly army 205 appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
2:14 “Glory 206 to God in the highest,
2:15 When 209 the angels left them and went back to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem 210 and see this thing that has taken place, that the Lord 211 has made known to us.” 2:16 So they hurried off and located Mary and Joseph, and found the baby lying in a manger. 212 2:17 When 213 they saw him, 214 they related what they had been told 215 about this child, 2:18 and all who heard it were astonished 216 at what the shepherds said. 2:19 But Mary treasured up all these words, pondering in her heart what they might mean. 217 2:20 So 218 the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising 219 God for all they had heard and seen; everything was just as they had been told. 220
Jesus’ Presentation at the Temple
2:22 Now 223 when the time came for their 224 purification according to the law of Moses, Joseph and Mary 225 brought Jesus 226 up to Jerusalem 227 to present him to the Lord 2:23 (just as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male 228 will be set apart to the Lord” 229 ), 2:24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what is specified in the law of the Lord, a pair of doves 230 or two young pigeons. 231
The Prophecy of Simeon
2:25 Now 232 there was a man in Jerusalem 233 named Simeon who was righteous 234 and devout, looking for the restoration 235 of Israel, and the Holy Spirit 236 was upon him. 2:26 It 237 had been revealed 238 to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die 239 before 240 he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 241 2:27 So 242 Simeon, 243 directed by the Spirit, 244 came into the temple courts, 245 and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what was customary according to the law, 246 2:28 Simeon 247 took him in his arms and blessed God, saying, 248
2:30 For my eyes have seen your salvation 254
2:31 that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples: 255
2:32 a light, 256
for revelation to the Gentiles,
and for glory 257 to your people Israel.”
2:33 So 258 the child’s 259 father 260 and mother were amazed 261 at what was said about him. 2:34 Then 262 Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, “Listen carefully: 263 This child 264 is destined to be the cause of the falling and rising 265 of many in Israel and to be a sign that will be rejected. 266 2:35 Indeed, as a result of him the thoughts 267 of many hearts will be revealed 268 – and a sword 269 will pierce your own soul as well!” 270
The Testimony of Anna
2:36 There was also a prophetess, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old, 271 having been married to her husband for seven years until his death. 2:37 She had lived as a widow since then for eighty-four years. 272 She never left the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. 273 2:38 At that moment, 274 she came up to them 275 and began to give thanks to God and to speak 276 about the child 277 to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem. 278
2:39 So 279 when Joseph and Mary 280 had performed 281 everything according to the law of the Lord, 282 they returned to Galilee, to their own town 283 of Nazareth. 284 2:40 And the child grew and became strong, 285 filled with wisdom, 286 and the favor 287 of God 288 was upon him.
Jesus in the Temple
2:41 Now 289 Jesus’ 290 parents went to Jerusalem 291 every 292 year for the feast of the Passover. 293 2:42 When 294 he was twelve years old, 295 they went up 296 according to custom. 2:43 But 297 when the feast was over, 298 as they were returning home, 299 the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His 300 parents 301 did not know it, 2:44 but (because they assumed that he was in their group of travelers) 302 they went a day’s journey. Then 303 they began to look for him among their relatives and acquaintances. 304 2:45 When 305 they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem 306 to look for him. 2:46 After 307 three days 308 they found him in the temple courts, 309 sitting among the teachers, 310 listening to them and asking them questions. 2:47 And all who heard Jesus 311 were astonished 312 at his understanding and his answers. 2:48 When 313 his parents 314 saw him, they were overwhelmed. His 315 mother said to him, “Child, 316 why have you treated 317 us like this? Look, your father and I have been looking for you anxiously.” 318 2:49 But 319 he replied, 320 “Why were you looking for me? 321 Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?” 322 2:50 Yet 323 his parents 324 did not understand 325 the remark 326 he made 327 to them. 2:51 Then 328 he went down with them and came to Nazareth, 329 and was obedient 330 to them. But 331 his mother kept all these things 332 in her heart. 333
2:52 And Jesus increased 334 in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and with people.