Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall
conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon
his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty
God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, [though] thou be little among the
thousands of Judah, [yet]
out of thee shall he come forth unto me [that is] to be ruler in Israel;
whose goings forth [have been] from of old, from everlasting.
in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of
Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin
espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the
virgin's name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou
that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among
women. And when she saw [him], she was troubled at his saying, and cast in
her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto
her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou
shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name
JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and
the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he
shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall
be no end.” Luke 1:26-33.
of our Lord is celebrated among Christians all over the world. It is a
wonderful time of year. Here in America
we observe a Christian tradition of the celebration of our Lord’s birth on
the 25th of December. At one time, in the not so distant past, we
made it a real Christ centered celebration, but in recent years it has
become more of a pagan day of partying instead of giving thanks. It’s a day
in which we look forward to getting up on Christmas day and opening presents
with our families and then we have a big meal cooked and everyone gets
involve themselves in celebrating but never even give a second thought to
Who they should be celebrating. Think of it this way, without the birth of
Jesus Christ there would be no Christmas Day celebration, just another day,
no free day from work, no presents given or received, no joining together
with family and friends, and of course most importantly of all, no free gift
we be thinking about as this special day approaches? Maybe we should give
some thought to what Joseph and Mary went through
as they traveled to and stayed in Bethlehem. “And it came to pass in those
days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world
should be taxed.” Luke 2:1. To be counted and taxed everyone had
to go to his birth city. Joseph’s hometown was Bethlehem,so
he and Mary,his
espoused wife,from Nazareth to Bethlehem. This journey amounted to
approximately eighty miles, a far piece to travel on the back of an ass
especially with the imminent birth of Mary’s child on the way.
arrived in Bethlehem Mary was very close to giving birth,so
Joseph tried to find suitable lodging, a peaceful and private place where
Mary could deliver her child. All that was availablewas
a stable with farm animals already taking up much of the room. There she
gave birth to baby Jesus. “And she brought forth her firstborn son,
and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because
there was no room for them in the inn,” Luke 2:7.
No room for God at the Inn. Kind of reminds us of the U.S.
nowadays, there’s no room for God in our public arena not to mention in many
of our personal lives. Soon there will be no room for God in the U.S.
That’s funny considering everything, that’s everything belongs to God.
we should think about those shepherds who were
tending their flocks that night when the angel appeared to them. Maybe give
some thought to being in their shoes,or
sandals as it were, and just sitting around the campfire enjoying the
peacefulness of the evening when suddenlyout
of nowhere there stood an angel from God. Just imagine, the shepherds being
the lowest of the low in that society and the angel of God appeared to them,
not to kings and queens or other dignitaries,but
to shepherds. Wow. And, lo, the angel
of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about
them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not:
for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all
people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And
this [shall be] a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling
clothes, lying in a manger. Luke 2:9-12.
Here’s the part that really floors me. “And suddenly
there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and
saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward
men.” Luke 2:13, 14. These were angels
wishing us lowly humans peace and good will. Wow, if that doesn’t bring
chills to your body nothing will.
heard the proclamation by the angel and the singing of all the Heavenly
hosts, the shepherds set out to find the manger where baby Jesus and Mary
and Joseph had taken up residence. When they
arrived they sawbaby
Jesus lying in the manger and shortly thereafter they set out once again to
make known to everyone the strange events of that evening and about the
wonderful savior of the world lying in a manger.
received His first distinguished quests:
came for a visit. These were men from a far off country who had studied a
prophecy written hundreds of years earlier about the coming King to be born
in Israel. The prophecy (probably given
by Daniel) had been passed down from generation to generation and finally it
was about to come true. They made the long journey by following a strange
light in the sky. This guiding light was all they had and by it they found
the Christ child. By this time He, Joseph and Mary were no longer living in
a manger but in a house in the Bethlehem. Jesus was about two years old at
time the censes had been completed so thatthe
Roman soldiers and most of the people had left Bethlehem and gone back to their homes. This
left plenty of room for Mary, Joseph,and
baby Jesus to find more comfortable accommodations. When the Magi,or
in Bethlehem thy found the
child Jesus and offered Him presents. We aren’t told how many Magi had
actually made the journey, all we are told is that they brought gifts. The
gifts included gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Church tradition tells us
there were three wise men but that isn’t substantiated by the scriptures.
So this is
the story of the birth of Christ as it is portrayed in the Bible. This is
what we should be celebrating on the 25th of December. We would
do so much better by recognizing the day for what it was meant to be, a
celebration of the birth of the Savior of the world. Never mind if it was
the exact date of His birth or not, that’s a mute point. It’s the reason
behind the celebration that is important.
infant Jesus the Christ grew into a man. Jesus Christ was fully man and
fully God. As He walked the shores of Galilee and the hills of Judea He taught folks how they
should live, He performed many miracles. He was despised and rejected,
beaten and put to death on a cross of wood, and yet He owned the hill on
which it stood. But the grave couldn’t hold Him. He rose on the third day
according to scriptures. This little baby of whose birth we celebrate on
Christmas day is now seated at the right hand of the Majesty on High.
you all and Merry Christ-mas.