The Sixth Day of Christmas

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Today’s reflection is a little bit different, but I thought it was worth bringing up.  Today’s Gospel contains an interesting statement, especially for Catholics.  Luke writes:

There was a prophetess, Anna,
the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.
She was advanced in years,
having lived seven years with her husband after her marriage,
and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.

We believe that Mary was a perpetual virgin.  Remember that in Matthew’s Gospel earlier this month he wrote:  “He had no relations with her until she bore a son.”   Some would say that this passage means that she did have relations after “she bore a son”, which is a convenient but inaccurate understanding of the word until.

Anna lived as a widow “until she was eighty-four.”  Logic and common sense tell us that Anna died at eighty-four, not that she remarried at eighty-five.

Often the words of scripture require interpretation.  We have to look at the use of certain words in Biblical times, even going back to the original Greek and Hebrew for clarification.  For those of us who aren’t skilled at foreign languages, we can still look at the customs of the day or just plain old common sense to understand what God is telling us through His inspired Word.

“Until” tomorrow, have a blessed day.  [Hmm, I wonder if that means that I hope tomorrow isn’t a blessed day.  I’m just sayin’…..]

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