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The Birth of Jesus: Two Gospel Narratives

Luke’s Theology

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The theological perspectives of Luke’s infancy narrative can be summarized as follows: Luke’s account presents the birth of Jesus as the climax of God’s promises to Israel.

  • His birth is surrounded by pious Jewish characters.
  • There are many allusions to biblical figures: Samuel, Samson, Elijah, David, Abraham, Isaiah
  • Jesus’ family observes both the Torah and Roman laws

Luke sees Jesus’ coming as a time of decision for God’s people. He will cause the rise and fall of many in Israel. For Luke, Jesus is the bringer of peace between Israel and the Gentile nations and for peace among the nations. Jesus is born amid the lowly of Israel, reflecting Luke’s concern for the poor and for those who can rely only on God. Luke portrays Mary as the first disciple and the model of discipleship. She hears the word of God and keeps it.