presentation in the temple (image)

This is a contemporary tempera/gouache on leather painting by an unknown Ethiopian artist. Source: Sacred Art Pilgrim website .

Following is a painting by Chen Yuandu 陳緣督 (1902–1967):

Housed in the Société des Auxiliaires des Missions Collection – Whitworth University.

Image taken from Chinese Christian Posters . For more information on the “Ars Sacra Pekinensis” school of art, see this article , for other artworks of that school in TIPs, see here.

complete verse (Luke 2:33)

Following are a number of back-translations of Luke 2:33:

  • Nyongar: “The father and mother of Jesus were surprised to hear these things, everything Simeon said of Jesus.” (Source: Warda-Kwabba Luke-Ang)
  • Uma: “The mother and father of that child were surprised to hear the words of Simeon about their child.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
  • Yakan: “The mother and father of the child wondered very much at the words of Simiyun about their child.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
  • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And then the parents of this child, they were very much surprised at what Simeon said about him.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
  • Kankanaey: “Jesus’ father-and-mother (lit. plural father) were surprised at what Simeon said concerning him.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
  • Tagbanwa: “Jose and Maria were amazed at those things which Simeon said concerning their child.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)

Translation commentary on Luke 2:33


kai ēn ho patēr autou kai hē mētēr thaumazontes ‘and his father and mother were astonished’; autou goes with both ho patēr and hē mētēr. ēn ‘was’ is in the singular and thaumazontes ‘astonished’ is in the plural. When the subject of a clause consists of two co-ordinate words connected by kai the verb is often in the singular when it stands before the subject; when the verb stands after the second subject it is usually in the plural. Here we have a combination of these rules. The periphrastic conjugation stresses the durative aspect of the imperfect.

epi tois laloumenois peri autou ‘at what was being said about him,’ i.e. about Jesus. Simeon’s prophecy is the first to transcend the boundaries of Israel and to stress the universal aspect of Messianic salvation.


His father and his mother, or, ‘the child’s father and mother (or, parents).’ In several languages it is possible to say ‘the father and mother,’ in which the article, or a deictic element, virtually limits the reference to the only parents-child relationship relevant in the context. The idiomatic sequence of the two nouns is not the same in all languages; several Indonesian languages, for instance, prefer ‘mother (and) father.’ The translator should use the sequence that is normal in the receptor language.

Marvelled at, or making explicit the durative aspect, e.g. ‘stood marvelling at’ (Nieuwe Vertaling); see on “wondered at” in 1.21.

What was said, or, ‘what Simeon said,’ ‘Simeon’s words.’

Quoted with permission from Reiling, J. and Swellengrebel, J.L. A Handbook on the Gospel of Luke. (UBS Handbook Series). New York: UBS, 1971. For this and other handbooks for translators see here . Make sure to also consult the Handbook on the Gospel of Mark for parallel or similar verses.