Go mbeannai Dia duit.

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Quaker by conviction, mother by default, Celticst through love, Christ follower because I once was lost but now am found...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tuesday's Trivia.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. Luke 2:8

The problem with Christmas is we think we know what it's all about. We have heard the story of the babe in the manger since we were born. We gloss over details because we know them so well.

Guilty as charged.

We know that Jesus was born to Mary & we know that Mary belonged to the House of David. Technically unless your mother is Jewish you are not considered a Jew so that looong, long genealogy in Matthew is important. It is important for other reasons too but Mary's lineage is essential.

Joseph, as Jesus earthly father, would have been given an opportunity to bless the reading of the Torah in the synagogue at the next opportunity after his son's birth. Don't you wonder what he prayed?

We know that on the night Jesus was born Shepherds were on the hills watching their flocks. Forget the snow, people. If the shepherds were watching their flocks on the hills the shepherds were still at their summer grazing pasture. A birth date of late September/early October is far more likely.

From both Mary's & Joseph's lineage Jesus could claim Davidic descent; David, who once declaimed, The lord is my Shepherd...The prophets declared For out of you will come a ruler who will Shepherd my people, Israel...Jesus, at once both the sacrificial lamb & the Shepherd is proclaimed first of all to shepherds watching their sheep. And you know something about sheep, who are easily agitated & upset; they take great comfort just from the presence of their Shepherd! I don't have time but the rich symbolism just in this short piece of scripture is multi~layered going all the way back to Genesis.

Then Jesus was the firstborn son. The first born of anything was to be redeemed & set aside for God. Originally they were to serve as temple priests but there was that little hoo~ha with the golden calf in which only the tribe of Levi didn't partake so the priestly role went to Levi but with Jesus you see scripture reverting to the original intent of God. Things return to the way they are meant to be. Jesus is our High Priest.

Jesus, as the son of devout Jews, was circumcised on the 8th day. Circumcision was the outward physical sign of an eternal covenant between God & his people Israel. It would have been at his circumcision that Jesus received his name.

When a child was born a messenger was sent at once to bring the news to the father, saying, "A child is born to you." And we all know the meaning of angel, don't we.

We read of the Heavenly Host suddenly appearing & glorifying God. For me this is one of the most poignant passages in all of scripture. If Mary & Joseph had been at home in Nazareth when this birth took place their home would have been swamped by the rellies & musicians would have arrived in droves to serenade the new babe. Far from home, closeted in a stable with the animals, there was small chance anyone was going to arrive to celebrate this birth. Joseph may not even have had the money to pay for the musicians but even in these little details God did not forget. There were musicians that night, rejoicing in the heavens & the Glory of God shone around for The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

Read the scriptures carefully. Christmas means so much more than we think it does.


Anonymous said...

Hi Ganeida,
It certainly does! It means Hope - the Hope of a future destiny serving the Lord in heaven, the Hope of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ returning to earth, and the Hope of a new heaven and new earth - Praise His Name!

Have a wonderful and blessed Christmas,
Love and blessings,

Persuaded said...

I love the thought that the angels kind of took the place of the friends and relatives that would have celebrated the birth with the young couple... they went to Bethlehem out of obedience, both to man and to God. How sad and difficult it must have been for them to have this momentous occasion occur so far away from their loved ones. God never allows us to lose anything without replacing it with something ever so much more wonderful, that is something I have learned in my own life. How incredibly meaningful to have this truth played out in the Christmas story... and I never would have known this if you hadn't shared it. Thanks♥

Jeanne said...

Just wanting to wish you a Joyful and Happy Christmas and a Blessed, Healthy and Happy 2010!

seekingmyLord said...

This may start some trouble (and I am known to start some when it comes to our perception of Biblical events), but I have this question:

If both Mary's and Joseph's families were of the lineage of David, wouldn't their families have to make the trip to Bethlehem also?

I did warn you that I am trouble....

Ganeida said...

Jillian: Yes indeedy. ☺

Persuaded: I seem to have a habit of doing that to you. ☺ I think you are better at living out the truth though.

Jeanne: Thanks love. Left you my wishes for the festive season on your blog. ☺

Seeking: Ah, someone with questions! ☺ Traditionally Joseph was older so perhaps no grandparents around on the paternal side. Certainly no mention scriptually. Elizabeth [cousin] seemed to have married a Levite so not heading Bethlehem way. No mention of Mary's parents either though by the time Jesus was preaching his whole family seemed to be screeching after him worried about His mental health & what people were saying. lol Sounds pretty typical. Mary seems to have been an only child & according to Jewish records inherited from her father Hillel [I think; it's been a while since I studied up on this one.] I can only go by what scripture says Mary & Joseph appear to have been alone. This was not the case when they lost Jesus at 12. Scripture says very clearly they hunted amongst the rellies first before returning to Jeruselum to look for him. No, I know I haven't really answered your question. That's because I don't know. lol

seekingmyLord said...

I am actually quite satisfied with not knowing *all* the answers....I just so like asking those pesky questions!

Ganeida said...

It's a propensity for asking the unanswerable that generates these posts! lol ☺ One day I hope God won't mind if we have a long chat & I get them all answered! ☺

MamaOlive said...

These posts remind me of when I was 12, sitting on the dining room floor surrounded by papers and encyclopedias, trying to look past the surface and get to the reality of a thing. Life really is quite interesting when one stops to look at it. :-)