Category Archives: G) Mary and Elizabeth

1) When did Mary visit Elizabeth?

Question

When did Mary visit Elizabeth?

Answer

March 30, 5 BC Julian Calendar.

Discussion

Gabriel visited Mary on March 25, 5 BC.

And Mary arose in those days, and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Juda; (Luke 1: 39)

Luke used word “days”, neither “week(s)” nor “month(s)”. This implied that Mary left Nazareth, traveled, and arrived at Hebron, Elisabeth home less than 1 week (< 7 days). Thus, Mary arrived at Elizabeth home on, at most, March 30, 5 BC.

  1. March 25
  2. March 26
  3. March 27
  4. March 28
  5. March 29
  6. March 30

Other consideration includes:

  1. Mary needed to make a preparation for the long journey. So, she departed on the next day (March 26).
  2. Distance from Nazareth to Hebron is 187 km with estimated travel time 39-43 hours on foot. Assuming there is similarity between ancient modern routes, Mary took similar distance.1
  3. She went through dangerous journey (robber, beast, etc), indicating she went in a group and only walked in daylight.
  4. She took rests along journey. She needed eating, praying, taking a bath, etc.

Considering factors above, she possibly walked about 9 hours a day and arrived at Hebron on March 30, 5 BC.

 

Time in Julian Calendar Event Ref
30th of March 5 BC Mary arrived at Elizabeth house. Luke 1: 39
A day between 1st and 24th of December 5 BC Joseph and Mary, which have been married, arrived at Bethlehem.  SeeWere Joseph and Mary married or engaged when they arrived at Betlehem?
25th of December 5 BC Jesus was born in a cave in outer skirt of Bethlehem. SeeTrain of Thought about Christmas December 25
A day between 26th and 30th of December 5 BCE Joseph, Mary, and Jesus moved to a house in Bethlehem City. Matthew 2: 11
31st of December 4 BC Preparation for Jesus circumcision (religious and social event) in Bethlehem. Considering social setting of Luke 2: 21
1st of January 4 BC Jesus circumcision in Bethlehem Luke 2: 21
6/7th of January 4 BC The wise men arrived at Bethlehem. SeeWhen did the wise men come to Jesus
2nd of February 4 BC Purification of Mary in Jerusalem Luke 2: 22
February 4 BC Matthew 2:13-15
February – April 4 BC Dwelt in Egypt Matthew 2:13-15
April 4 BC Luke 2:39; Matthew 2: 15, 19-23


Bibliography

1https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Nazareth,+Israel/Hebron/@32.1152644,34.5507591,9z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m14!4m13!1m5!1m1!1s0x151c4e7cf16c0fff:0xd2385b30c1275dd6!2m2!1d35.303546!2d32.699635!1m5!1m1!1s0x1502e427ecc463fb:0xbe464d5c6a2f134c!2m2!1d35.099826!2d31.532569!3e2?hl=en ; access June 16, 2015.

Nazareth-Hebron
Nazareth-Hebron

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3) Did Mary actually leave Elizabeth before or after John was born?

Question

Did Mary actually leave Elizabeth before or after John was born?

Answer

Mary actually left Elizabeth after John was born.

Discussion

And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; (Luke 1: 69)

“an horn of salvation for us” refers to foetus Jesus Christ.

“the house of his servant David” refers to Mary, which was present when Zacharias was prophesying.

Thus, “an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David” refers to foetus Jesus Christ in the womb of Mary.

foetus in the womb of mary

Conclusion

Mary actually left Elizabeth after John was born.

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4) How old was Zachariah when his wife gave birth to John the Baptist?

Question

How old was Zachariah when his wife gave birth to John the Baptist?

Answer

The Gospel does not mention figure and only informs that Zachariah was in advanced age at the time of Gabriel  visit.

And they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they both were now well advanced in years. (Lukas 1: 7)

And Zachariah said unto the angel, How shall I know this? for I am an old man, and my wife well advanced in years. (Lukas 1: 18)

He was as old as his wife (Luke 1: 7), both of them are in advanced age.

How old were they?

Advanced age, old age, or elderly age begin at 60 years old.1

Risk of stillbirth by mother's age
Risk of stillbirth by mother’s age

Meanwhile the oldest woman to give birth is 70 years old.

Hence, Zachariah and his wife’s ages are  possible to quantified, i.e, ranging from 60 to 70 years old


Bibliography

1Forman DE, Berman AD, McCabe CH, Baim DS, Wei JY, “PTCA in the Elderly: the ‘young-old’ versus the ‘old-old’” at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1727842 ; access: January 20, 2015  3:51 UTC/ GMT

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5) When did Mary leave Elizabeth’s home?

Question

When did Mary leave Elizabeth’s home?

Answer

Mary arrived at Elizabeth home on March 30, 5 BC Julian Calendar.

And Mary abode with her about three months, and returned to her own house. (Luke 1:56)

According to Luke 1: 56, Mary abode with her about 3 months. Word “about” implies that 3 is a round number.

March 30 + ≈3 months = ≈June 30

Then, Mary left Elizabeth on about June 30, 5 BC after John’s birth. She arrived at Nazareth on first week of July 5 BC.

≈June 30 + 6 days = ≈ July 6 (first week of July 5 BC)

Chronology

Time in Julian Calendar Event Ref
30th of March 5 BC Mary arrived at Elizabeth’s home. Luke 1: 39
30th of June 5 BC Mary left Elizabeth’s home. Luke 1: 56
First week of July 5 BC Mary arrived at her home in Nazareth. Calculation
A day between 1st and 24th of December 5 BC Joseph and Mary, which have been married, arrived at Bethlehem.  SeeWere Joseph and Mary married or engaged when they arrived at Betlehem?
25th of December 5 BC Jesus was born in a cave in outer skirt of Bethlehem. SeeTrain of Thought about Christmas December 25
A day between 26th and 30th of December 5 BCE Joseph, Mary, and Jesus moved to a house in Bethlehem City. Matthew 2: 11
31st of December 4 BC Preparation for Jesus circumcision (religious and social event) in Bethlehem. Considering social setting of Luke 2: 21
1st of January 4 BC Jesus circumcision in Bethlehem Luke 2: 21
6/7th of January 4 BC The wise men arrived at Bethlehem. SeeWhen did the wise men come to Jesus
2nd of February 4 BC Purification of Mary in Jerusalem Luke 2: 22
February 4 BC Matthew 2:13-15
February – April 4 BC Dwelt in Egypt Matthew 2:13-15
April 4 BC Luke 2:39; Matthew 2: 15, 19-23

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