Our nation will soon be commemorating the birth of our savior Jesus. I think that whenever our country wants to celebrate something good it is a good thing. And the birth of Jesus is a very good thing. So great is the fact of His birth that it is the central point in time! We count years from His birth, time being reckoned either before or after Christ’s birth. Ironically, the birth of Jesus probably occurred about 3 B.C. according to most scholars.
Mathew, Luke and John all write about the events surrounding the Messiah’s birth but each account preserves different information for us. John’s record is short and sublime, focusing on the amazing fact that God entered the world, “And the word became flesh and dwelt among us….full of grace and truth.” Mathew and Luke give us more of the human interest information that we all can relate to because they are very human circumstances indeed. Because both of these writers record different facts, there is a need to harmonize them into chronological order.
“The birth of Jesus was as follows”, “the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph of the house of David. The virgins name was Mary.” The angel said to her, “you will conceive in your womb…a son”. Mary asked, “How can this be since I am a virgin?” The angel said, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you. Therefore, that Holy One to be born will be called the Son of God.”
Mary then went to the hill country of Judah and stayed with her relative, Elisabeth. Now Elisabeth was six months pregnant at this time, even though she and her husband Zacharias were too old to have children. Her conception was similar to Sarah’s in that God renewed her womb. Her child would be John the Baptist. But Mary’s happened without sexual relations. God was His father. Mary stayed with them about three months, and returned to her house.
Now when Joseph heard that Mary was pregnant, “Being a just man, did not want to expose her to public disgrace, planned to divorce her privately”. But in a dream, an angel of the Lord told him to marry her for the child was of the Holy Spirit. “You shall call his name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” And so Joseph, “took her as his wife, but he had no marital relations with her until she had brought forth her firstborn son.”
Now just before Mary was to give birth a decree went out that everyone must register for a census, so Joseph took Mary and went to Bethlehem because he was of the house of David. And, “while they were there…… she brought forth her firstborn Son and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn”. An angel then appeared to shepherds living out in the fields and told them, “There is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And suddenly a multitude of angels appeared praising God saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to those with whom He is pleased”. And so the shepherds went and saw Jesus and made known what they had seen and heard.
Eight days later Jesus was circumcised and officially named Jesus. And after forty days from His birth, Jesus was presented in the temple in Jerusalem which was only about three miles away. “Now after”, while still in Bethlehem, but now residing in a house, wise men from the East following His star came to worship Him. “And when they had come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary His mother, and they fell down and worshiped Him…..and they presented gifts to Him, gold, frankincense, and myrrh”. After they departed, Joseph was warned in a dream to, “Flee to Egypt and stay there until I bring you word”. They left by night and stayed in Egypt till he was allowed to return to the region of Galilee to a city called Nazareth. “And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom and the grace of God was upon Him.” With this humble beginning, our God and Savior began his life on earth.
I wish a Merry Christmas to all-