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Category:Anna, daughter of Phanuel

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---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary.

Grace, an aged widow, the daughter of Phanuel. She was a "prophetess," like Miriam, Deborah, and Huldah (2 Chronicles 34:22). After seven years of married life her husband died, and during her long widowhood she daily attended the temple services. When she was eighty-four years old, she entered the temple at the moment when the aged Simeon uttered his memorable words of praise and thanks to God that he had fulfilled his ancient promise in sending his Son into the world (Luke 2:36 - 2:37).

The Presentation
Luke 2:22-39

2:22. After the days of Mary's purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they carried Him to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord
2:23. as it is written in the law of the Lord: “Every male opening the womb shall be called holy to the Lord,”
2:24. and to offer a sacrifice, according to what is written in the law of the Lord: a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.
2:25. There was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon. This man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was with him.
2:26. He had received an answer from the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord.
2:27. He came by the Spirit into the Temple, and when His parents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him according to the custom of the law,
2:28. he also took Him into his arms and blessed God and said,
2:29. “Now You may dismiss Your servant, O Lord, according to Your word in peace,
2:30. “because my eyes have seen Your salvation,
2:31. “which You have prepared before the face of all peoples,
2:32. “a light for the revelation to the Gentiles and the glory of Your people Israel.”
The Holy Family with Simeon and Anna
2:33. The Child's father and mother were wondering at those things which were spoken concerning Him.
2:34. Simeon blessed them and said to Mary His mother, “Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and for the resurrection of many in Israel and to be a sign which shall be opposed.

For the fall, etc. . .Christ came for the salvation of all men; but here Simeon prophesies that many through their own willful blindness and obstinacy would not believe in Christ, nor receive His doctrine, which therefore would be ruin to them, but to others a resurrection, by their believing in Him, and obeying His commandments.

2:35. “Your own soul a sword shall pierce, that many hearts may reveal their thoughts.”

Having experienced such great sorrow, Mary can now relate to our sorrows and console us in our sorrows as one who has already undergone such great suffering and loss and understands our pain and grief. Also, when we have offended God, we may also choose to come to her in our remorse and repentance.

2:36. There was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was far advanced in years and had lived with her husband seven years from her virginity
2:37. and as a widow until eighty-four years of age. She did not depart from the Temple, but served night and day with fasting and prayer.
2:38. Now she, coming in at the same hour, gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke about the Child to all that looked for the redemption of Israel.
2:39. After they had performed all things according to the Law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their city Nazareth.

The Holy Family returned to Nazareth, then fled from Nazareth to Egypt when Herod sought to kill the Child Jesus.

2:40. The Child grew and increased in strength. He was full of wisdom, and the grace of God was upon Him.
2:41. His parents went every year to Jerusalem, at the solemn day of the Passover,

The Passover was also known as the pasch.

2:42. and when He was twelve years old, they, having gone up into Jerusalem according to the custom of the feast
2:43. and having fulfilled the days, returned, but the Child Jesus remained in Jerusalem, and His parents did not know it.


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