Flight to Egypt in Matthew 2:13-18
Once again, we see God intercedes for the protection of Jesus. Once again, he comes to Joseph in a dream and tells him to flee to Egypt. And Once again, we see that God is purposefully seeking to fulfill his prophecies so that no one will have an excuse in not knowing that Jesus Christ is the messiah.
So you might ask the question why two years or younger? There is a huge difference between a two year old and a newborn. This was because King Herod had earlier asked the wise men, in verse 7, about the time of the appearing star. Their answer gave him an estimated time of birth for his potential challenger.
In verses 17-18, we see a quote from Jeremiah 31:15. Jeremiah used personification to describe the mothers of Israel (Rachel) mourning for their children who had been removed from the land and carried off into exile, leaving Israel no longer a nation and considered dead. Like the exile attempted to wipe out the Jewish nation, the attempt on Jesus’ life was intended to wipe out the chosen one of God.
The purpose of this passage is that Jesus is inaugurating a new exodus. We see in the Old Testament that this passage refers to two old exoduses. First is the Exodus out of Egypt that is referred to in verse 15. The second is the exodus from Babylonian captivity that is referred to in verse 18. The 2 old exoduses showed the mercy of God in the Old Testament by the way God saves his people by bringing a miraculous deliverance from Egypt. In the new Exodus the mercy of God will be seen in the New Testament by the way, God saves his people by bringing the Messianic Deliverer from Egypt. (Goldsworthy, 1991)
New home in Nazareth in Matthew 2:19-23 & Luke 2:39
Once again, we see God intercedes for the protection of Jesus. Once again, he comes to Joseph in a dream and tells him to go back to Israel and in another dream to go to the district of Galilee. And Once again, we see that God is purposefully seeking to fulfill his prophecies so that no one will have an excuse in not knowing that Jesus Christ is the messiah.
Archelaus, was one of the sons of King Herod. He succeeded Herod’s throne. He was hated by the Jews and displayed the same kind of cruelty that had characterized his father’s reign. Caesar Augustus, fearing a revolution from the people, removed and banished him to Gaul.
Jesus going to live in Nazareth was also no accident. God once again did it to fulfill prophecies. We see that the Old Testament prophets foretold that the Messiah would be despised (Ps. 22:6, Isa. 49:7; 53:3, Dan. 9:26). We can see how the town of Nazareth was despised in the time of Jesus by looking at John 1:46, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Not only does it fulfill prophecies, but it also fits nicely with the theme that Jesus first goes to the least of these. We first saw this with the choosing of Mary and Joseph to be the parents. We then saw it with the shepherds being the first to witness the messiah, and now we see it with the choice of where to live in the despised town of Nazareth.