Sunday, June 14, 2009

#5 Chapter 2:1-20 Jesus the Messiah is Born !!

Read Chapter 2:1-20...then come back..

Here we have Luke's version of the REAL CHRISTMAS STORY...

The first thing Luke brings to our attention is the way God the Father is using the powerful Roman Government Officials to orchestrate the prophesies surrounding the birth of His Son...

Caesar Augustus the greatest Roman Emperor was compelled to institute a census which required all citizens to return to their home towns to take a census so they could collect their taxes, and it must be done "now".

Perfect timing Huh?...Just in time to make sure that Joseph and Mary who lived in Nazareth had to make the 70 mile trip to Bethlehem, where we know of course it was prophesied in Micah 5:2"But for you Bethlehem, too little to be among the clans of Judah. From you One will be ruler in Israel, His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity..."

So off they go on their trek to Bethlehem because the Messiah must be born there....I wonder if they knew that the prophecy was being fulfilled? I have a feeling they might not have. They were probably just going about the business of obeying the law in spite of the fact that Mary was about to give birth.

And we all know the story that when they finally got there Mary did give birth and because of the great influx of people traveling there, there was no place for them to stay. So they must have found some kind and generous person to lend them their stable to stay in. Can't you just see God's hand in this too?....making sure His servants Joseph and Mary and of course His Son would be taken care of even in these chaotic circumstances?

I did find as I was studying a little tidbit of information; That the wooden structure of a stable that is normaly seen depicted on the front of our traditional Christmas Cards is not correct, but it was most likely a cave in the side of a mountain.

So here comes God's version of a Birthday Party for His Son!! The birth of His Son was a pretty big deal so He made sure all the angels and all the hosts of heaven attended the celebration!... They were the ones who made the big announcement and brought attention to it.

I find it wonderful that instead of going to all the so-called important people in town the announcement was made to shepherd's out in the fields...Isn't that just like our Father God to reach out to those who would commonly not be important in a worldly view? He has and always will reach out to the meek with His love, and this time was no different.

The angels came and of course it freaked the shepherd's out! Can't you just imagine them sitting around the fire that night or tending their sheep and all of a sudden the Great glory of the Lord God lit up the sky...!! All the angels began singing praises and dancing joyfully! Our God really knows how to start a party don't He? No body can say we serve a boring God!! :) smile..

The angels once again knowing that humans really aren't used to this kind of thing say "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ..the Lord"

We've all heard that verse before but really stop this time and think about what it must have really been like for the shephards to see these things and hear these words first-hand and up close...

I wish I could have been there, can't you just see all the shepherds scattering and running and rejoicing and praising the Lord!!....and of course started on their way to Bethlehem to see this Savior child the angels had told them about??

Mary and Joseph must have been exhausted, especially Mary, from the trip and then the birth. But here are all these strange people who have come looking for their son. But what a blessing too, because once again God was confirming to them the great privilege they were the recipient of...To be the surrogate parents of the Messiah! The bible says that Mary treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart....

Luke chose to leave out some of the parts that other gospels include. Things like the star and the wise men, but I like this simpler story too...Just short and very sweet.

I love Christmas and celebrations surrounding the birth of our Savior, but in the process of studying here it gave me new incite into what that day must have really been like.

I especially liked the reminder that God uses both Emperors and common everyday people for His purposes and causes even ordinary circumstances in our lives to bring about what He has planned for us. He's got it all figured out in advance, all the little details...down to the precise time and place..

I have a new perspective on my own everyday life now. God really is in control. He really does know what He's doing even when it makes no sense to me whatsoever...He knows where I'm gonna wind up at the end of each day, week, month and year...and plans it out and leads me down those paths. I really do need to relax even more...

I am reminded of the scripture that says "Man makes his plans, but God directs his path"...I may make plans but if God has a better idea and sends me in another direction, I can rest in the assurance He knows what He's doing...Ok Father! You're will, not mine...

I have a newer level of trust now...after all if He can cause Emperors to move on His behalf, He can certainly cause people and circumstances in my life to turn out just right every single time.

And I am so glad He sent Jesus to us...Thank you God for sending our Savior. I am so glad He came and was born so I can be saved from my sin. Thank you Father..You're Awesome!! Thank you Jesus...I love the story of your "Birth"day party!!

What did the story of Jesus' birth teach you?

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