Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Christmas story part 8: Luke 2 - Jesus' birth

What I love about the birth of Jesus is that it is the exact opposite of what you would expect. If mankind were running things, this Savior would have been born with much fanfare. The birth would have occurred in the finest palace with the elite of the elite present to worship Him from the beginning. Instead, we see the opposite. He was born with little fanfare in a manger. Shepherds, part of the bottom rung of society, were the only ones present at the birth.

8And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." – Luke 2:8-12

This is just the first of many misconceptions that those in power would make during Jesus’ life on earth. Since they held positions of power they figured He would come from power. They ignored the prophesies that predicted this exact scenario, never seeing past their own pre-conceptions.

The shepherds play an important role as well. One of the things that got Jesus into trouble later in his ministry is his desire to associate with sinners. As He famously said, “a doctor is there for sick people, not those who are healthy. The shepherds visiting at the time of His birth were the first example of many proving that Jesus came for everyone, not just the elite. These men were considered unclean by those in the Temple. Their testimony could not be trusted, yet they were the first to recognize this very special event.

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