Advent 2018

Day 17. Bethlehem

Advent 2018 - Day 17. Bethlehem
Monday 17th December 2018

Luke 2:1-7

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.

Luke provides us with more information about the events surrounding the birth of Jesus. Political decisions dictated that the young couple should travel to Bethlehem , and there the child was born in the most humble of circumstances. This is perhaps the most familiar picture we have of the Christmas event—but remember what was happening. This was no ordinary child. In Jesus God became a human being and dwelt among us, perhaps the greatest miracle (and mystery) of all. As you visualise the scene again, let worship arise in your heart: ‘From heaven you came, helpless Babe, entered our world your glory veiled.’ Emmanuel, God with us! The Servant King, worthy of all our adoration and love.

LORD God, ‘powerful leaders’ push people around with their decrees, but Jesus, your promised King, begins his life in our world as a helpless newborn, tightly wrapped in cloths, lying in a manger because there was no bed! In this season please help me to live in the wonder of your upside-down Kingdom where your love for us, God, compels you to become helpless, vulnerable and dependent. Thank you for loving me that much, may your Kingdom come in and through my life today.


James. Now to live the life
The book we’re learning from this autumn term is James. Written by James, Jesus’ half-brother, it’s a small letter found in very last pages of the Bible