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16

This is a fairly common question, and there is a very good answer. A detailed answer can be found here and here. These are some of the highlights. It is important to note that Luke mentions that the census to which he is referring is the first census taken while Quirinius was governing. This seems to indicate that at the time of writing, the readers ...


10

I don't want to plagiarize, but there is a very good Catholic article on this here. In summary, the significance of swaddling clothes lies both in the fact that it is humble, common, ordinary, and also that it ties to Solomon - specifically the Wisdom of Solomon 7, 3-6. 7:3 And when I was born, I drew in the common air, and fell upon the earth, ...


8

Hah! She sounds like a wily one. I'm no expert in Feng-Shui (or your Aunt), but here are some relevant Biblical principles: Wisdom In Silence If a person is not truly interested in seeking/knowing the truth (e.g. a person who just wants to push their views on you), there is Biblical precedence for keeping silent. (Proverbs 23:9, Matthew 27:12-14) ...


7

That the wise men did not arrive until Jesus was a child and no longer an infant is derived from several Scriptures, particularly in Matthew. Matthew chapter 2: KJV 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also. 9 When ...


7

If you read the account in Luke 2:1-20, you'll find no mention of Magi at the manger, just shepherds. There, Jesus is born in Bethlehem. In Matthew 2:1-18, we find the Magi arriving at Jerusalem, from the scribes there they find out the scripture which places the Messiah in Bethlehem (2:5-6), and follow the star, which is low enough to appear over a ...


7

This is a good question and has a simple answer. Nativity scenes are intended to be representations of Jesus birth, not a historically accurate depiction. In other words they are there to remind us of the important elements of the birth, not to be a photorealistic documentary. Therefore the shepherds, the wise men, angels are all included because they were ...


6

The Protoevangelium of James, an apocryphal Gospel probably written about AD 145, Says that Joseph used a donkey to bring Mary to Bethlehem The day of the Lord shall itself bring it to pass as the Lord will. And he saddled the ass, and set her upon it; and his son led it, and Joseph followed. Protoevangelium of James:17 So we know that from very ...


6

According to Fredrick A. Larson, this so-called 'Star of Bethlehem' is actually the planet Jupiter. He produced a video documentary called (appropriately enough) "The Star of Bethlehem" that can be found on YouTube (link) and his website. In this video documentary, Rick Larson lays out a detailed case for the Star of Bethlehem being Jupiter, which includes ...


5

It is prophesied by Micah 5:2. Perhaps you're wondering why Micah would prophesy that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem in the first place. Well, "Bethlehem" is from the Hebrew בית לחם (beit-lechem), which literally means "house of bread." The Messiah is the "bread of life" (John 6:35). I say, what better city for him to be born? And Jesus said to ...


5

The first question is what year Jesus was born in. The people who devised the Christian calendar reckoned that Jesus was born in 1CE, aka 1AD. (There was no year zero CE). However, there is a lot of scholarship that concludes that Jesus was born sometime between 6-4BCE. You can consult Wikipedia on this. They also have an article on Nativity of Jesus. ...


4

There were several Herod's. The first Herod was Herod the Great. Herod Archelaus, (3 BC – 7 AD) ruled 10 yrs before being disposed by Herod Antipas. Antipas was king during the life of Jesus and killed John the Baptist. Herod Agrippa I, grandson of Herod the Great, is the King whose acceptance of worship caused his death. (Acts 12). He killed James, the ...


4

The following is highly speculative but (I think) not entirely unreasonable. Shepherds might be considered lower class and were likely grubbier than those in other occupations, especially given that these were night-shepherds in the fields (when all the "decent" folk would be sleeping at home). By announcing the message to isolated shepherds, the privilege ...


4

If Mary withheld this mystery from Joseph her spouse, it is more than reasonable to believe that those who knew of it [Joseph, Elizabeth, Mary's parents] left it to God to reveal it at his appointed time. To the General Public, no! as the following passages reveal: Mt 13:55 (RSVCE) 55 Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? ...


4

See this wikipedia article, which mentions the Bible account in Matthew. Basically, the Bible refers to Jesus as being a "child" at the time. Also, Herod killed the male population under 2, which is probably the upper limit on Jesus' age at the time. Nothing concrete here, but enough evidence to draw a reasonable conclusion that it was some months after the ...


4

According to this site, the first draft of the song actually had the words In the whiteness of the lilies he was born across the sea And then the final version of the song, which was first published in 1862 had the words In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea That same site references a book by Edmund Wilson entitled Patriotic ...


3

Before the birth Mary was the first to know that God would be the Father of her Son; Luke 1:34-35: ‘How will this be,’ Mary asked the angel, ‘since I am a virgin?’ The angel answered, ‘The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. And Joseph knew ...


3

To my understanding of Scripture, it is fairly safe to assume there were at least three, since there are three differing gifts named, but as you said the Bible does not tell us exactly how many there were. Even the belief that there were three cannot be accurately determined since one of them may have brought more than one gift, or even all three. As a ...


3

As we read the Nativity Story, (esp Luke 2: 7-20) Ponder the questions? Why did the angels go to the shepherds first? Why are swaddling clothes twice mentioned, "And this shall be a sign unto you, ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger." I gave a talk a week ago, on the shepherd seeking the lost sheep, when I found the ...


3

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bethlehem The Hebrew Bible identifies Bethlehem as the city David was from and the location where he was crowned as the king of Israel. It never occurred to me before, but given that Bethlehem was pivotal in David's history, one could say that any great descendant of his came "from" Bethlehem. It seems awfully literal to ...


3

It's just what people do with newborns: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swaddling We found that wrapping our children with slightly stretchy fabric blankets when they were infants tended to comfort them and help them sleep better than when their limbs would flail about.


3

The Nativity Scene is a Catholic tradition originally performed over most of Advent and the whole of the Christmas season. It should be remembered that Christmas is significantly longer than a single day of celebration. In the traditional form, pieces are added to the set over the whole of both seasons and it functions as a sort of Advent Calendar. The ...


2

There's no way to answer this definitively: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_of_Bethlehem There are probably several astrological events that could construe "a rising star" to the ancients, but there's no natural phenomenon that would fit a literal reading of verse 9. I personally find this part of the story symbolic. It's also interesting to note that ...


2

I have studied and questioned the meaning of the swaddling clothes and why the angel would use those words as well to the shepherds. I know no word is accidentally placed in the bible! Being of Jewish descent I found out years ago that the priest's clothing worn to minister before the Lord in the Holy Place, not Most Holy Place, were never tossed away but ...


2

This website http://www.arielministries.org/ariel/roar_main_december2012.html has some useful information where there is additional information about the swaddling of the sacrificial lambs. I have always wondered about the significance of Jesus' having been swaddled and the reason that the Angels proclaiming his birth to the shepherds would have included ...


2

The Biblical account does not specify the number of Magi. However tradition has set their number - three according to Western traditions, and twelve according to Eastern. The Western tradition is presumably derived from the number of gifts. The first record of names is in a 8th Century account of the story, so the number is established then or before. ...


2

This will be a lengthy answer as I will give you all the pertinent Scriptures along with my understanding of each beginning with the following: All Scripture is quoted from the King James translation unless otherwise noted. Luke 1:26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, Shortly after this ...


1

it's a reference to the Sermon on the Mount. consider the lilies of the field. Jesus says that the lilies are more beautiful than Solomon in all his glory. Solomon was the richest king in the history of Israel.since Christ was born in poverty, in a stable, any beauty that he had would have to be the beauty of the lilies. meaning in a beauty not provided ...


1

In discussions in which I have been involved, the basis for this belief appears to be a need to harmonise the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. Luke 2:22 has the baby Jesus being taken from Bethlehem to Jerusalem for his circumcision, a little over a month after his birth, so at this stage he had not yet been taken from Bethlehem to Egypt, as we read in Matthew ...



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