When it comes to remembering Jesus and His birth, most manger scenes either come from Matthew, chapter 2, with the wise men, or Luke, chapter 2, with the shepherds. Those stories are real, minus the fact that Jesus was a little older and living with his parents in a house when the wise men came delivering their gifts. Jesus’s age at this time is unknown, but I am pretty positive He was under the age of 2 years old. Speaking of Jesus’s magnificent birth, we will be looking at how it all began in Luke, chapter 1. This story comes from verse 1 of that chapter and reads, “And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:).” (Luke 2:1-4) This is very important, for it was prophesied that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem many years before this most special event happened.
Jesus being born in Bethlehem was prophesied by the prophet Micah. In chapter 5 of that book it reads, “but 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.” (Micah 5:2) At this time there was a taxing upon the land and therefore, Joseph returned to his house of origin, which is Bethlehem. Other translations also say “registered”, which makes sense that he would need to be there to be registered and then taxed. The story continues and says that Joseph needed “to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 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 2:5-7) Jesus was not born in a castle but in very humble circumstances. And in this same way, we remember Jesus coming into the world. Jesus did come for us, in order to save us from our sins. Amen.
Let us pray:
Oh Lord, it is with praise and honor that I come to you in remembrance of Your birth. Yes, Jesus, throughout the year I look to You in faith, but this time of year is different. I love it when Easter comes around and I can tell people about the cross and resurrection. I don’t celebrate this holiday as the world does, but use it to tell people about what You did for us on the cross. How Your blood covers our sins and makes us clean when we repent. And because You rose from the grave the third day, death was defeated. This means that You will one day raise us up into newness of life in the resurrection of the dead, which will be amazing to be a part of. As for this time of year, all I can think about is Your birth. The world tries to get people to forget about You and to think about Santa instead, but that will never happen in my household. As for me and my family, we only celebrate Christmas in a way that we can remember You and nothing else. It is because You came into this world, that I have forgiveness and mercy. Thank You for saving me and also members of my family. I am so grateful to be a part of Your kingdom. I love You, Lord. Lead me this day and forever. I trust in You. Amen.