This devotional is written by Matt Coombs. Matt is one of the leaders at St Mary's and is married to Pip.

Luke 2:1-7

The Birth of Jesus

 2 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.


The first chapter of Luke which we have looked at the last couple of days revealed some of the great Messianic expectations. The Messiah, it was believed, would overthrow enemy occupation, restore righteousness and justice on the earth, set right all wrongs, and remove oppression from the land. The Messiah would then rule and reign over all the earth from the throne of David in Jerusalem, thus fulfilling the Abrahamic and Davidic covenants.

Chapter two, however, begins to reveal that the life of Jesus the Messiah would not exactly fit the expectations. The circumstances surrounding his birth were certainly not kingly. Instead, it was a humble, lonely event. These circumstances were somewhat caused by the exercise of power from a selfish and greedy foreign emperor. It was just this sort of abuse of power the Jewish people expected the Messiah to stop, and yet when Jesus was born, he and his family experienced troubles as a result of this ruler. Later, after his birth, the people who visited him and pronounced prophecies about him also begin to show that all will not be exactly as expected with this Messiah.

So while this may not have been the birth which the Jewish people expected for their Messiah, it shows that even from birth, the Messiah suffered along with His people, and experienced the same hardships as they. If deliverance came, it would come from one who suffered among them, not from a rich and pampered king, who knew nothing of pain and hardship.

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