Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Our pastor had a Christmas quiz posted on his blog, so I decided to take it - thinking, of course, that I had heard the Christmas story so many times it would be a cinch. Wrong! I failed the quiz! How could this be? I had my husband and children take the quiz - they failed. I forwarded it to my extended family - they failed (except for my Bible scholar, sister, who still only got a 66%). I've heard the Christmas story hundreds of times in my life and so had they - I began to realize the problem, our world, our Christmas marketers, our media have aided in giving us the wrong picture. Have you ever seen a Christmas card, nativity scene, Christmas picture, or program that wasn't bright and beautiful - that didn't sparkle and shine with happiness? I'm in no way saying that Christmas shouldn't bring joy and happiness, it should - it is a great reminder of how we should be celebrating Christ's birth and time on this earth, all year long. What I am saying is that I don't think the world truly wants to know how it truly was. They want to think that the birth of our Savior was a perfect, bright, wonderful occurance. Ponder on this - Here was a young girl (probably 12 or 13) traveling for this census being 9 months pregnant (miserable). Then she is in labor and cannot find anyplace to stay for the night so they are forced to put their newborn son wrapped in cloths in a manger. The mention of the manger is how we get the idea that He was born in a stable. Stables back then, were caves with feeding troughs (mangers) carved into the rock walls. The surroundings were very dark and dirty. Definitely, no place for a King and Savior. The shepards come to worship Jesus in the manger. The wise men, didn't. The wise men came to worship Jesus when He was probably between 1 and 2 years old. By this time, Mary and Joseph would have been married and living in a house. So all the nativity scenes with the wise men worshipping in the stable are false. We also don't know that there were 3 wise men - only 3 gifts were mentioned, so assumptions are made that their were only 3 wise men. The more I write, the more frustrated I become. How have we allowed the truth of the birth of our Lord and Savior be comprimised so that we can all have warm and fuzzy feelings. We should be humbled and thankful for the gift God gave us in Jesus, but the life He lived for us and the brutal death He died for us was in no way, easy.