Luke 2:38
And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise to the Lord, and spoke of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.
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(38) Gave thanks.—The word so translated occurs here only in the New Testament, but it is found with this meaning in the LXX. version of Psalm 79:13.

That looked for redemption in Jerusalem.—The better MSS. give, “the redemption of Jerusalem,” the phrase being the counterpart of the “consolation of Israel” in Luke 2:25. Both the verbs “gave thanks” and “spake” imply continued, and not merely momentary action.

2:36-40 There was much evil then in the church, yet God left not himself without witness. Anna always dwelt in, or at least attended at, the temple. She was always in a praying spirit; gave herself to prayer, and in all things she served God. Those to whom Christ is made known, have great reason to thank the Lord. She taught others concerning him. Let the example of the venerable saints, Simeon and Anna, give courage to those whose hoary heads are, like theirs, a crown of glory, being found in the way of righteousness. The lips soon to be silent in the grave, should be showing forth the praises of the Redeemer. In all things it became Christ to be made like unto his brethren, therefore he passed through infancy and childhood as other children, yet without sin, and with manifest proofs of the Divine nature in him. By the Spirit of God all his faculties performed their offices in a manner not seen in any one else. Other children have foolishness bound in their hearts, which appears in what they say or do, but he was filled with wisdom, by the influence of the Holy Ghost; every thing he said and did, was wisely said and wisely done, above his years. Other children show the corruption of their nature; nothing but the grace of God was upon him.And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years - That is, she was about 84 years of age. It does not mean that she had been a widow for that long time.

Fastings and prayers - Constant religious service. pending her time in prayer, and in all the ordinances of religion.

Night and day - Continually - that is, at the usual times of public worship and in private. When it is said that she departed not from the temple, it is meant that she was "constant" and "regular" in all the public services at the temple, or was never absent from those services. God blesses those who wait at his temple gates.

38. coming in—"presenting herself." She had been there already but now is found "standing by," as Simeon's testimony to the blessed Babe died away, ready to take it up "in turn" (as the word rendered "likewise" here means).

to all them, &c.—the sense is, "to all them in Jerusalem that were looking for redemption"—saying in effect, In that Babe are wrapt up all your expectations. If this was at the hour of prayer, when numbers flocked to the temple, it would account for her having such an audience as the words imply [Alford].

See Poole on "Luke 2:36" And she coming in that instant,.... That the parents of Christ brought him into the temple; just as Simeon was embracing him in his arms, and blessing God for him, and saying the things concerning him he had done; and who also came at that juncture, as he did, under the impulse, and by the direction of the Spirit of God,

gave thanks likewise unto the Lord: praised him, as he had done, that he had sent the promised, and long looked for Messiah and Saviour; and that she had lived to see his blessed face, and this happy day; and that she should be directed to come in at this instant, and be favoured with this singular mercy of seeing the new born Saviour, and his honoured parents:

and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem; this she either did at this time; they in Jerusalem that looked, and diligently waited for, and earnestly desired the Messiah, and spiritual redemption and salvation by him, being now assembled together in the temple; or afterwards, as she had opportunity of conversing with them, when she acquainted them with what she had heard and seen. By "the redemption" they were looking for, is meant, the Redeemer; as by salvation, the Saviour, in Luke 2:30. Some versions, as the Syriac, Arabic, and Ethiopic read, "the redemption of Jerusalem"; not literally, but spiritually, understood, even the redemption of the church of Christ, which is often so called: and others, as the Persic version, "the redemption of Israel"; that is, of spiritual Israel: some read "in Israel"; so one copy of Stephens's.

And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.
Luke 2:38. Αὐτῇ τῇ ὥρᾳ] in which occurred the previously described scene with Simeon.

ἐπιστᾶσα] having made her appearance, namely, to speak. Comp. Aeschin. p. 65, 5; Xen. Anab. v. 8. 9, Sympos. ii. 7. The suddenness and unexpectedness in the demeanour of the aged widow is implied also here (comp. on Luke 2:9) in the context. On ἀνθομολογεῖσθαι (comp. LXX. Psalm 79:13; 3Ma 6:33), in the case of which ἀντί “referendi reprehendendique sensum habet,” see Winer, de verbor. compos. usu, III. p. 18 ff. The tenor of her utterance of praise to God (τῷ κυρίῳ) is after what was related of Simeon obvious of itself, and is therefore not more precisely specified.

περὶ αὐτοῦ] ὅτι οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ λυτρωτής, Euthymius Zigabenus. Jesus is the subject still present, as a matter of course, in the conception of the narrator (from Luke 2:34 f. onwards), although not mentioned in the context (Winer, p. 132 [E. T. 180 f.]).

τοῖς προσδεχομ. λύτρωσιν] Comp. Luke 2:25. With the reading Ἱερουσ. without ἐν (see the critical remarks), deliverance of Jerusalem is not essentially distinct from παράκλησις τοῦ Ἰσρ., Luke 2:25, comp. Luke 1:68, since Jerusalem is the theocratic central seat of God’s people. Comp. Isaiah 40:2. We may add, the ἐλάλει κ.τ.λ. took place on her part likewise αὐτῇ ὥρᾳ, namely, after she had presented her praise to God. The pious ones waiting for the Messiah are with her in the temple, and to them all she makes communication about the child that is present. But this is not to be conceived of as a public utterance, for which the limitation τοῖς προσδεχ. would not be appropriate.Luke 2:38. The T.R. has yet another αυτη here (the third), before αὐτῇ, which really seems wanted as nominative to the verb following, but which one can imagine scribes omitting to relieve the heaviness and monotony of the style.—ἀνθωμολογεῖτο (here only in N. T.): perhaps no stress should be laid on the preposition ἀντὶ, as the compound verb occurs in the sense of the simple verb in Sept[32] (Psalm 79:13). The suggestion of an antiphony between Anna and Simeon (Godet; vicissim, Bengel) is tempting = began in turn to give thanks. The ἀντὶ may refer to spectators = be an to praise God openly before all (Hahn). The subject of her praise of course was Jesus (περὶ αὐτοῦ), and its burden that He was the Saviour.—ἐλάλει points to an activity not confined to a single utterance; she spoke again and again on the theme to all receptive spirits. The omission of ἐν before Ἱερ. in [33] [34], etc., gives us a peculiar designation for the circle to whom the prophetess addressed herself = those waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem (instead of Israel in Luke 2:25). Yet Isaiah 40:2—“speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem”—makes such a turn of thought intelligible. And there might be discerning ones who knew that there was no place more needing redemption than that holy, unholy city.

[32] Septuagint.

[33] Codex Sinaiticus (sæc. iv.), now at St. Petersburg, published in facsimile type by its discoverer, Tischendorf, in 1862.

[34] Codex Vaticanus (sæc. iv.), published in photographic facsimile in 1889 under the care of the Abbate Cozza-Luzi.38. that looked for redemption] See Luke 24:21; Mark 15:43; 1 Corinthians 1:7; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 9:28. See Excursus VII.

in Jerusalem] The readings vary. Perhaps it should be for the redemption of Jerusalem.Luke 2:38. Ἀνθωμολογεῖτο) in return for the Divine favour, she made public acknowledgments. The word answers to the Hebrew הודה.—[περὶ αὐτοῦ, concerning Him) viz. Jesus as being the Redeemer.—V. g.]—πᾶσι, to all) There were therefore no few who looked for redemption. Others, although they believed that Messiah would come, were not looking for Him.—ἐν, in) to those who were in Jerusalem looking for redemption.[30]

[30] Thus Beng. joins ἐν Ἱερους. with πᾶσιν τοῖς προσδεχ.: not with λύτρωσιν, redemption in Jerusalem, as Engl. Vers. But Bbc Vulg. Memph. Theb. Syr. Iren. 187, omit ἐν, which requires the connection of λύτρωσιν with Ἱερους., the redemption of Jerusalem. ADd, however, support the ἐν of the Rec. Text.—ED.Coming up (ἐπιστᾶσα)

See on Luke 2:9.

Gave thanks (ἀνθωμολογεῖτο)

The verb originally means to make a mutual agreement; and the idea of reciprocity is retained in the expression "to return thanks" for something received. Compare Sept., Psalm 79:13.


Not a public utterance, for which the words, those that waited, etc., would be inappropriate. It was to the pious ones who were with her in the temple, waiting for the Messiah.

In Jerusalem (ἐν Ἰερουσαλήμ)

All the best texts omit ἐν, in. Render, as Rev., the redemption of Jerusalem. Nearly equivalent to the consolation of Israel, Luke 2:25. Compare Luke 1:68, and see Isaiah 40:2.

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