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Author Topic: Answer to Seeming Gospel Discrepancy?  (Read 458 times) Average Rating: 0
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Justin Kissel
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« on: January 11, 2012, 02:21:06 PM »

The Gospel of Luke says that Mary and Joseph lived in Nazareth at the the time of the annunication (Lk. 1:26) and during part of Mary's pregnancy with Jesus (Lk. 2:4); it also says they returned there later after Jesus was born (Lk. 2:39). However, in the Gospel of Matthew there is a line which seems to imply that Joseph and Mary were not living in Nazareth until after Jesus was born and they returned from Egypt:

"And [Joseph] arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither, notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee, and he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth" (Matt. 2:21-23 KJV).

Another translation:

"So he got up, took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Having been warned in a dream, he withdrew to the district of Galilee, and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth." (Matt. 2:21-23 NIV)

If they had been living in Nazareth before, then why mention them not going to where Herod's son was because they were afraid? Is the Gospel just saying that they would have went to where Herod's son was ruling rather than back to Nazareth, had they been able, but since they feared for their lives settled for the second option of returning to Nazareth? Or is there some other answer that I'm not seeing?
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« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2012, 03:53:12 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

The Gospel of Luke says that Mary and Joseph lived in Nazareth at the the time of the annunication (Lk. 1:26) and during part of Mary's pregnancy with Jesus (Lk. 2:4); it also says they returned there later after Jesus was born (Lk. 2:39). However, in the Gospel of Matthew there is a line which seems to imply that Joseph and Mary were not living in Nazareth until after Jesus was born and they returned from Egypt:

"And [Joseph] arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither, notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee, and he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth" (Matt. 2:21-23 KJV).

Another translation:

"So he got up, took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Having been warned in a dream, he withdrew to the district of Galilee, and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth." (Matt. 2:21-23 NIV)

If they had been living in Nazareth before, then why mention them not going to where Herod's son was because they were afraid? Is the Gospel just saying that they would have went to where Herod's son was ruling rather than back to Nazareth, had they been able, but since they feared for their lives settled for the second option of returning to Nazareth? Or is there some other answer that I'm not seeing?

The Gospels are Synoptic, they are different viewpoints of the same events.

Luke emphasizes the background as to how and why Joseph and Mary are in Nazareth, Matthew emphasizes the miraculous vision as to how they returned to Nazareth.  Matthew is not saying one way or another the connection which Joseph has with Nazareth, whereas Luke is telling us this history.

The way to connect the gap is to say, "he went and lived a town called Nazareth (Matthew 2:23), to their own town (Luke 2:39)."

In this way we understand that the Holy Family returned to Nazareth where they initially lived.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2012, 04:21:09 PM »

Quote
Of the four Evangelists, Matthew and Luke relate Jesus’ nativity and infancy and give different, but related reasons for Jesus’ settlement in Nazareth despite His birth in Bethlehem, the city of King David. According to Matthew, Jesus was brought up in Nazareth because His foster father Joseph chose it as a safer place after returning from Egypt (Matthew 2:19-23), where Joseph and Mary had previously taken refuge while escaping the massacre of the infants in Bethlehem (Matthew 2:13-18). Luke, on the other hand, implicitly binds Jesus’ identification as a Nazarene to His parents’ being inhabitants of Nazareth prior to His birth in Bethlehem (Luke 1:26; 2:39, 51). These reasons are obviously different, but it is possible to reconcile them by first posing a question about the account in Matthew and then answering it with the help of the information given in Luke. After returning from Egypt and deciding not to settle in Judea, why did Joseph choose particularly Nazareth of all the other Galilean towns? Most probably because Nazareth had been his hometown before going to Bethlehem on the occasion of the census and Christ's nativity (Luke 2:1-5).

Taken from the "Theological Implications of the Nazareth-Capernaum Pair in Matthew and Luke" (appendix) http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/barnabas/mistakes2.html
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2012, 12:05:59 AM »

Thanks  Grin
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