Twenty-five days after Yeshua was circumcised and named in Nazareth, we find him at the Temple in Jerusalem. If you haven’t read our earlier blog – Experiencing the Temple Yeshua That Knew – go back and read it & watch the video so you will be able to picture what happened in the verses below:
When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord. As it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord,” and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord; “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.” (Luke 2:22-24)
Luke refers to two laws from “the Law of Lord” – the purification of the mother & the redemption of the first born son. The laws concerning the purification of the mother are found in Luke is Leviticus 12:
Then the woman must wait thirty-three days to be purified from her bleeding. She must not touch anything sacred or go to the sanctuary until the days of her purification are over. . . When the days of her purification for a son or daughter are over, she is to bring to the priest at the entrance to the tent of meeting a year-old lamb for a burnt offering and a young pigeon or a dove for a sin offering. He shall offer them before YAHWEH to make atonement for her, and then she will be ceremonially clean from her flow of blood. These are the regulations for the woman who gives birth to a boy or a girl. If she cannot afford a lamb, she is to bring two doves or two young pigeons, one for a burnt offering and the other for a sin offering. In this way the priest will make atonement for her, and she will be clean.’” (Leviticus 12:4-8)
Mary’s sacrifice of “a pair of doves or two young pigeons” provides an insight into the finances of the family because she was not able to afford to purchase a lamb for the sacrifice. The laws for the redemption of the first born son are found in Exodus 13 and Numbers 3.
YAHWEH said to Moses, “Sanctify (set apart) to Me every firstborn male. The first offspring of every womb among the Israelites, among mankind and large animals, he is Mine.”(Exodus 13:1-2)
YAHWEH said to Moses, “Number every male of the sons of Israel who are a month old or more and take the number of their names. And you shall take the Levites for Me in place of all the firstborn of the sons of Israel, and the cattle of the Levites in place of all the firstborn of the cattle of the sons of Israel.” (Numbers 3:40-41)
In return for the Levites taking over this responsibility, every firstborn Israelite was required to be redeemed by a payment of five shekels to a member of the tribe of Levi. Despite the destruction of the Temple, this ancient redemption ceremony continues to take place and is still widely observed today. On the thirty-first day after the birth of the first son, a ceremony, to which relatives and friends are invited, takes place in the home. Among the guests is a Kohen (priest), a descendant of the tribe of Levi.
When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. (Luke 2:39)