The circumcision of Jesus (Lk 2:21-2:21)

“After eight days

Had passed,

It was time

To circumcise

The child.

He was called


This was the name

Given to him

By the angel

Before he was conceived

In the womb.”


Καὶ ὅτε ἐπλήσθησαν ἡμέραι ὀκτὼ τοῦ περιτεμεῖν αὐτόν, καὶ ἐκλήθη τὸ ὄνομα αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦς, τὸ κληθὲν ὑπὸ τοῦ ἀγγέλου πρὸ τοῦ συλλημφθῆναι αὐτὸν ἐν τῇ κοιλίᾳ.


Just as Luke had the circumcision and naming of John, so too he has the circumcision and naming of Jesus, his cousin.  Like John, it takes place on the 8th day after the birth in chapter 1:59.  So too, just like John, chapter 1:63, Jesus got his name at his circumcision.  Luke said that after eight days had been completed (Καὶ ὅτε ἐπλήσθησαν ἡμέραι ὀκτὼ), it was time to circumcise the child (τοῦ περιτεμεῖν αὐτόν).  He was called Jesus (καὶ ἐκλήθη τὸ ὄνομα αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦς), the name given to him by the angel Gabriel (τὸ κληθὲν ὑπὸ τοῦ ἀγγέλου) before Mary conceived him in the womb (πρὸ τοῦ συλλημφθῆναι αὐτὸν ἐν τῇ κοιλίᾳ) in chapter 1:31.  Luke continued these parallel stories of John and Jesus.  Both families clearly followed all the Jewish laws and customs about circumcision and naming a child, but John and Jesus were nevertheless special children.

King Demetrius I allows Jews to be in his army (1 Macc 10:36-10:37)

“Let Jews be enrolled in the king’s forces

To the number of thirty thousand men.

Let the maintenance be given them

That is due to all the forces of the king.

Let some of them be stationed in the great strongholds of the king.

Let some of them be put in positions of trust in the kingdom.

Let their officers and leaders be of their own number.

Let them live by their own laws,

Just as the king has commanded in the land of Judah.”

King Demetrius I wanted to allow Jews to be in his army. Actually to be a member of the army was a privilege. He hoped that this would strengthen their loyalty to him. He was going to allow 30,000 Jews in his royal army. Already they had quotas. These Jewish soldiers were going to be paid like the other soldiers in the royal army. They would be stationed at the great strongholds of the king. Some would even be given trusted positions. They would even have their own officers come from their ranks. Finally, they could follow all the Jewish laws in Judah.