Resurrection Chapel National Cathedral, Washington, D.C.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Advent/Christmas Scripture Hunt

Following the posting, earlier this week, of “Advent the Season of Waiting” one of our regular readers suggested that since I had assigned homework, it might be a good idea to post a Pop Quiz of the sort we all remember from school days. 

“Why not?” I thought.  So here it is.  I concocted this quiz some years ago as part of a confirmation curriculum designed for students in 8th and 9th grade.  One of the things I discovered early on was that generally speaking we don’t do a very good job of telling the whole story of Advent and Christmas.  We have a way of getting up from the table at Thanksgiving and moving straightaway to the stable in Bethlehem, with only a cursory nod to Mary and Joseph’s journey from Bethlehem.  We then crowd the Wise Men in right behind the shepherds, and pay no attention to what happened next.

Over the years students taking the quiz have been surprised to find out just how interesting the whole story is, and when at least some of them followed my suggestion that they bring the quiz home for the rest of the family it made for some interesting conversations.  Answers will be posted by early evening on Sunday, Dec. 2.  Pay attention to the directions, and give it a go.  Something unclear?  Drop an email: tospeakofgod@gmail.com.

The following list of questions all have to do with events surrounding the birth of Christ.  It is an open book quiz, though if you want to give it a try on your own that’s fine.  All the questions may be answered on the basis of what you find in the Gospels of Matthew, chapters 1 & 2, or Luke, chapters 1 & 2.  Answer each question and then, on a separate sheet of paper, arrange the events they describe in the right order.  Hint: Answer the questions exactly as asked.  Otherwise some answers will elude you.

  1.  Who was Zechariah?

  2.  What was Herod’s job?

  3.  Who visited Mary?

  4.  Who announced a new census?

  5.  Where did Zechariah work?

  6.  What was Joseph’s dilemma?

  7.  Can you find the Wise Men’s names?

  8.  Who first visited the Christ Child?

  9.  Where did Mary and Joseph live before Jesus was born?

10.  Who spoke to Zechariah in the Temple?

11.  What did Herod do after the Wise Men visited Jesus?

12.  Who was Anna?

13.  What did Joseph do for a living?

15.  What was the relationship between Mary and Elizabeth?

16.  Why did the Wise Men visit Herod?

17.  Can you find how James the Obnoxious got his name?

18.  Who was Elizabeth?

19.  Who brought Jesus gifts?  What were they?

20.  Who was Simeon?

Howard MacMullen
© November, 2012

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