Welcoming the Savior

Key Verse: “Unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”
—Luke 2:11

Selected Scripture:
Luke 2:1-20

THE BEAUTIFUL STORY OF the birth of Christ takes place in Israel at the time that Caesar Augustus decreed a tax be placed upon the people. The people had to go to their own city to register for this taxation. (Luke 2:3) It was at this time that “Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.”—vss. 4,5

We find the fulfillment of prophecy in these events. Jesus was to be called a “Nazarene,” (Matt. 2:23) since Joseph and Mary lived in Nazareth, where our Lord grew up and from where he started his ministry. (Mark 1:9) But the Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem. (Mic. 5:2) Thus, God caused a forced movement of his guardians to Bethlehem, where he was to be born. How wonderful is our God who so accurately makes plain his great plan of the ages. How confident we can be that what God says, he will accomplish.

In verses 6-7 we have shown for us the humble surroundings of this birth. Kings usually are brought forth with much pomp and circumstance. However, our Lord was to be born in an animal stall, and placed in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn.

At this time “there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.” (vs. 8) God did not make known the birth of his Son to the noble, but to the lowly, as we read, “God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; … That no flesh should glory in his presence.”—I Cor. 1:27,29

“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.” (vss. 9-11) The Jews were always looking for ‘evidences’—‘signs,’ of the things to come to pass. How would they know that this was the Savior and not just some ordinary baby? “Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.” (vs. 12) God does not leave out any details essential for identification.

The shepherds went to Bethlehem and found Mary and Joseph and beheld the babe lying in a manger. The account reads that those who saw our Lord went and told all what they had seen and what the angel had told them. The words of the angel were explicit, ‘born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ [Messiah].’ No doubt those that heard of this event remembered the prophecy of the coming of Messiah and were amazed.

We read in verse 19, “Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.” To ponder is ‘to weigh.’ Mary weighed each circumstance of its just importance, anxiously seeking what it might indicate respecting her child. The circumstances concerning the birth of Christ increase our faith and fill our hearts with joy. Blessed be our great God!

Dawn Bible Students Association
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