Philippe Costamagna has suggested that the present work was a presentation drawing for Stradanus' 1569 commission for the altar in the Asini Chapel in Santa Croce, Florence (which is signed and dated), while Baroni Vannucci dates it to circa 1590, possibly for an unknown print by the artist. There is also a preparatory drawing, not as finished as the present sheet in the Wilumsen Museum in Frederikssund, Denmark (A. Baroni Vannucci, op. cit., no. 370, p. 263) that is associated with the altarpiece. Philip Galle also made a print after the altarpiece (A. Baroni Vannucci, op. cit., no. 749, p. 429), although Baroni Vannucci did not relate it to the present drawing despite its compositional similarities. While there are differences between the two drawings, the print and the altarpiece - mainly in the number of figures, they are all very similar in composition and in the layout of the figures, and all three works have the usual motif of Christ's footprints on the ground in the bottom center of the composition. The addition of two angels on separate sheets of paper to the present drawing suggests that it was a work in progress, which could account for the differences between it and the Asini altarpiece.
The 1722 inventory of Florentine collector Francesco Maria Nicolo Gabburri lists a group of sixteen drawings for the painting in Santa Croce, none of which have been identified ('Nos. 552-567: sedici disegni di lapis nero, sopra carta Bianca, disegnati de ambedue le parti del folgio...',see G. Campori, Raccolta di cataloghi ed inventarii inedii i, Modea,a 1870, p. 575).