Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Luke 2:6-7: And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
Oh my, is it this time of year already? It feels like summer was only yesterday.
We are entering the preparation time. It is the time to prepare for the arrival of Jesus. That is why we have the season of Advent. This year, I want to focus on the real side of Christmas. We start with the stable. The place where the manger was where Jesus was laid after His birth.
And that belief is coming under scrutiny from experts and commentators. As I read through many of the more recent commentators, I sense a common thread. That is, if Joseph is of the lineage of David, he must have know about family there and stayed with them. Since there was no room in the "upper room," or "Inn" where guests stayed, Joseph and Mary stayed on the main floor which sometimes had a "manger" or feeding trough for animals they kept inside overnight. The reason for this interpretation versus the traditional one is, why would the Holy Family be born where animals were kept. It was not clean? It was not done according to ceremonial laws of cleanness.
And this is the reason why we need to remain with the traditional interpretation of the birth of Jesus and where. Jesus came to a very messy world full of sin, despair, grief, and pain. Jesus came into a world that was unclean. The King of kings and Lord of lords was not born in the finest of places or in situations that fit what we think should have happened. God's Son, Jesus, Y'shua, Emmanuel, and all the other names and titles associate with Jesus, came to save us from ourselves, from our sins, from our hurts along with our own stupidity. Jesus was born in our mess in order to save us from our mess. And THAT is the real story. Dear God, lead us to remember why You came to us, Amen.
Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.