R. Gnuse, «The Temple Theophanies of Jaddus, Hyrcanus, and Zechariah», Vol. 79 (1998) 457-472
A close reading of three accounts concerning theophanies experienced in the Temple (Ant 11,326-328, Ant 13,282-283, and Luke 1,5-23) implies that all three narratives share a common narrative format. Though it does not necessarily indicate that Luke used Josephus writings, this similarity suggests that both authors may have drawn upon a common format. Use of this format and specific variations added to it by Luke reflect significant theological themes imparted to the narrative by Luke, especially in regard to the identities of John the Baptist and Jesus.
(Matt 1,20, 2,13.19) speaks to Joseph, in the Lukan Infancy Narratives the burden of revelation is borne by actual angels. There is something suspicious here. One might suggest that Luke has taken the old Jewish circumlocution for God literally and turned it into actual angelic beings. He did the same with the account of Jesus baptism; for here Luke reports that the Holy Spirit descended bodily as a dove (Luke 3,22), whereas Mark 1,10 and Matt 3,16 record that the Spirit merely descended "like" a dove. If Lukes angels are really a literalization of the Jewish idiom "angel of God/Lord", then there is kinship between Jaddus dream theophany and Lukes angel. Of course, Luke further elaborates by giving the angel the name of Gabriel, a being associated with apocalyptic expectations, and by providing dialogue. The point to be made is that the revelatory experiences in Ant 11,326 and Luke 1,11-20 ultimately are comparable. One could pursue similar comparisons with Hyrcanus experience in Ant 13,282, for he heard a fwnh/, or a voice, speak to him. Sometimes this term is used in dream theophanies in Josephus for auditory dream reports 7. But since the term dream is not used in this narrative, we might be stretching the point to imply that Hyrcanus experience was related to dream theophanies also.
Finally, it is interesting to note that a related narrative of a temple theophany may be found in 2 Macc 3,22-34. Here a theophany is experienced by an intruder into the Temple, Heliodorus. He encounters two young men (presumably angelic beings) who beat him up (v. 26) and then later provide him with a stern warning (v. 34). This conforms, in part, to the other three accounts, but obviously diverges at many points, including, most importantly, the identity of the recipient (a Seleucid agent) and the nature of the message (a physical thrashing). But we do have the appearance of angels, as in Luke.
The message heard by Jaddus comes from God who tells him "to take courage" and to engage in certain actions. He should adorn the city, open the gates, dress in white robes, and he and the other priests should go forth to meet Alexander. Jaddus is assured that God is watching them and no harm will come to them (Ant 11,327).