The Nativity of Luke and Matthew

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A short introduction to the significant events of the Gospel Infancy Narratives

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The Nativity of Luke and Matthew

  1. 1. The Messiah Introduced: The Infancy Narratives of Matthew and Luke
  2. 2. Matthew and Luke <ul><li>The only two Christian Scripture writers to even mention the birth of Jesus </li></ul><ul><li>Mark’s Gospel begins with the ministry of John the Baptist </li></ul><ul><li>John’s Gospel begins with a parallel of the Book of Genesis </li></ul>
  3. 3. Matthew’s Infancy Narrative <ul><li>Matthew’s primary audience for his Gospel was Jewish converts to Christianity </li></ul><ul><li>Thus, he draws parallels between Jesus’ life and events from the Hebrew Bible (O. Test.) </li></ul><ul><li>He saw the birth of the Messiah as giving new meaning and fulfilling Biblical prophecies </li></ul>
  4. 4. Matthew’s Infancy Narrative cont. <ul><li>Jesus’ virgin birth and being conceived by the Holy Spirit fulfills the passage from Isaiah 7:14 </li></ul><ul><li>What Matthew (and other N.Testament writers) does is give the Hebrew Scriptures a “Christological” interpretation </li></ul>
  5. 5. Matthew’s Magi <ul><li>Magi = (3) wise men, or kings who bring Jesus gifts </li></ul><ul><li>Traveled from the East, possibly Babylonian or Persian astrologers </li></ul><ul><li>Guided by a star which was read as a sign of the King of the Jews to be born </li></ul><ul><li>Could have been a comet, two planets lined up or possibly an angel </li></ul>
  6. 6. Matthew’s Magi (cont) <ul><li>Brought 3 gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh </li></ul><ul><li>Gold signifies the &quot;divine nature&quot;. Frankincense would symbolize the fragrance of resurrection. And, myrrh, would symbolize the fragrance of death </li></ul>
  7. 7. Matthew Parallels Jesus with Moses <ul><li>Moses survives murderous attack on children by Pharaoh, Jesus survives murderous attack by Herod </li></ul><ul><li>Moses is a child raised in Egypt, Jesus is a child raised in Egypt </li></ul><ul><li>Moses is summoned in his adult life to deliver God’s people from slavery, as Jesus is summoned later in life to deliver God’s people from sin’s slavery </li></ul>
  8. 8. Luke’s Infancy Narrative <ul><li>Varies significantly from Matthew’s infancy narrative </li></ul><ul><li>Where Matthew depicted Jesus’ birth as the Messiah as a king, Luke depicts Jesus’ birth as that of the Messiah as a common man </li></ul>
  9. 9. John the Baptist <ul><li>Luke begins with the birth of John the Baptist, being born to aged parents…a common theme in Biblical tradition </li></ul><ul><li>Luke is the only N.Test. Writer to point out J. the B. as a blood relative to Jesus </li></ul>
  10. 10. Luke’s Infancy Narrative (cont.) <ul><li>Luke is the only one of the four Gospel writers to </li></ul><ul><li>mention the angel, Gabriel as the messenger of Jesus’ </li></ul><ul><li>virginal conception </li></ul><ul><li>Luke mentions the date of Jesus birth as related to </li></ul><ul><li>Augustus Caeser, a Roman Emperor- Matthew mentions </li></ul><ul><li>Herod, the Jewish ruler. </li></ul><ul><li>- this foreshadows the universality of Jesus </li></ul><ul><li> message (outside of the Jewish faith) </li></ul>

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