Day 4 Read: Luke 2:36-38
36 And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, 37 and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. 38 And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.
Reflect: How would you describe Anna’s life? What was her focus? How did she demonstrate that focus?
Consider: The reference to Anna’s age indicates her long and single-minded devotion to God. Like Zechariah and Elizabeth (1:6) and Simeon (2:25), Anna was devout and righteous and a model for the believer. “Night and day” corresponds well to the Jewish reckoning of time since a day began at sunset (cf. Acts 20:31; 26:7). This expression should probably not be pressed to mean twenty-four hours a day, i.e., she lived in the temple, because women were not normally allowed to stay in the temple during the night. It is best therefore to interpret it in the popular sense of all the time, i.e., she was “in church” all day long (cf. 24:53).4
Respond: While physical presence at 2300 Welsh Avenue is not the takeaway from Anna’s life, what does a life of worship look like to you? How would that be demonstrated in your day-to-day life?
4 Robert H. Stein, Luke, vol. 24, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1992), 118.