Friday, February 2, 2018

On the Fourth Joyful Mystery

From Aleteia:
What Luke doesn’t mention is an offering of five shekels to ransom Jesus, the first-born son. This exchange goes back to the time of the Exodus, when God called the Israelites to consecrate all firstborn sons to him (Exodus 13:2). Later, when the Levites were chosen to serve in the temple and to be priests of the Most High, God commanded the people to ransom each consecrated firstborn son from priestly service by making an offering of five shekels when the child was one month old (Numbers 18:16).

The reason, it seems, that Joseph and Mary did not fulfill this element of the law is that Jesus was not to be ransomed. Instead he was to remain consecrated as a priest of God, offered in sacrifice. Though Jesus was already in a covenant relationship with the Father, he was still circumcised, in order to be faithful to the Law. Though Mary had no sin, she made a sin offering, in order to be faithful to the Law. Here, though, Joseph and Mary were faithful to the Law not in offering the prescribed ransom but in offering their Son instead. (Read more.)

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