Mathew introduces the earthly mother of Jesus, Mathew 1:18 “This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: “His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. “” Due to the fact that Mary was already promised to Joseph, but not yet married, being pregnant caused Mary to worry that Joseph would rebuke her. Mary was a devout, Godly person, and was known throughout Galilee to be sinless. The birth of Jesus is foretold in Luke where the circumstances surrounding this miraculous and Holy conception are described.
Luke 1:26-28, “In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you. “” Gabriel calms Mary then tells her, Luke 1:31-35, “”You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end. ” “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin? The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon 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. ”
” Mary who held great faith, and being obedient to God replied, Luke 1:38, “”I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said. ” Then the angel left her. ” By most accounts it is agreed that the birth of Jesus occurred during the reign of the Roman emperor Caesar Augustus (31 B. C. – A. D. 14). Caesar Augustus is considered to be the greatest Roman Emperor, for he expanded the Roman Empire to include the entire Mediterranean world.
The birth of Jesus described by Luke mentions Caesar, and also hints as to the greatness of the Roman Empire. Luke 2:1,2, “In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria. )” Joseph heeded this order by Caesar to register, Luke 2:4, “So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazereth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlahem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. While in Bethlahem Mary delivered mans Savior, Luke 2:6,7, “While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. ” The most likely reason that Jesus was born in a stable, and then placed in an animal trough (manger) was because; Bethlehem was inundated with people who were registering for the census. It was customary for sheepherders to stand watch over their flocks at night.
God sent an angel to inform the shepherds in the surrounding area that a Savior had been born in Bethlehem. The initial appearance of the angel struck fear in the shepherds, Luke 2:10-12, “But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger. “” With this awesome incarnation sent from God the shepherds became very excited, and made haste to see what the angels had told them.
Luke 2:17,18, “When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. ” Inquiry of the wise men regarding the birth of Jesus caused King Herod concern. It should be noted that King Herod was a very evil, jealous, and unscrupulous ruler over Judea during this period. This is depicted in scripture, Mathew 2:1- 5, “After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews?
We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him. ” When King Herod heard this he was disturbed and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Christ was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:”” Hearing this Herod became very interested in finding Jesus. It should be noted here that Herod’s reason for finding Jesus was not to worship Him; he wanted to harm Him. For Herod, there was no room for another King… e wasn’t going to chance his rule and authority for the child named Jesus. Mathew 2:7-10, “Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him. ”
After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. It should be noted that contrary to tradition the Magi (or wise men) did not visit Jesus in the manger. Their visit actually took place several months later, at His house with His mother. Mathew 2:11,12, “On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshipped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. ” In a dream the Magi were warned not to give Jesus up to Herod thus, they avoided Herod by journeying along an alternate route back home.
After they left, an angel sent from God visited Joseph. Mathew 2:13,14, “When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him. ” So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt,” Joseph then took Jesus as told to Egypt until after Herod’s death when it was safe to return. Joseph was given the news of Herod’s death from an angel sent to him in a dream.
Mathew 2:20, “And said, “Get up, take the child and his mother and go to theland of Israel, for those who were trying to take the child’s life are dead. “” On the way back to Judea, Joseph learned that Herod’s son Archelaus was now the ruler there. Fearing for Jesus’ life yet again, Joseph decided to travel instead to Galilee in the town of Nazereth. Luke 2:39-40, “When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazereth. ”
In completing the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy, which informs mankind of the Christ-mass, Jesus began to preach. This is described in Mathew 4:14-17, “To fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah: “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, along the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. ” From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is near. “