The birth of Jesus Christ is the one of the most significant events in all of history and when we understand the truths regarding the true date of his birth it will thrill and inspire our hearts. Yet surrounding his birth has grown a lot of tradition that is not biblically-based and not supported by Scriptures. I am not advocating that we do not celebrate Christmas, but an understanding of the events of this amazing time in history will truly deepen our appreciation of the integrity and accuracy of God’s Word
Tradition has made December 25th the birthday of Jesus, but the Bible clearly reveals he was not born on that day. It was not until the 4th century after Christ that December 25th began to be celebrated as the day of Christ’s birth. It was the old pagan holiday celebrating the winter solstice and the birth of the sun god and celebrated when the days began to get longer. In Rome it was the festival called Saturnalia and later the Roman Empire baptized it and began to celebrate it as the birth of Jesus. Jesus Christ Our Promised Seed states: “In 274 A.D., the Romans designated December 25 as the birthday of the unconquered sun, being the time when the sun begins noticeably to show an increase in light, resulting in longer daylight hours. By 336 A.D., the church in Rome was adapting this festival, spiritualizing its significance as a reference to Jesus Christ and calling it the ‘Feast of the Nativity of the Sun of Righteousness.’ Attempting to Christianize and incorporate the pagan traditions of antiquity, the church in Rome adopted this midwinter holiday celebrating the birth of the sun god as one of its own observances, somewhat changing its significance, but retaining many customs of the pagan festival. As the Roman church spread its influence religiously and militarily, this holiday of December 25 became the most popular date in Christendom to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. A special mass was established for Christ, hence, the name, ‘Christmass,’ abbreviated ‘Christmas.’”
All biblical scholars know that Jesus was not born on December 25th. Tradition is never an accurate measurement for truth. God has a significant meaning in everything He does and this does not exclude the birth of His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. The subject of the entire bible is Jesus Christ and his first coming was prophesied first in the book of Genesis right after Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden. This prophecy of the future coming of Christ became the polestar of the Old Testament. When it seemed that all was lost and the devil had succeeded in ruining Adam and Eve, God promised a coming Savior, who will redeem mankind from the penalty of sin and ultimately crush the devil into oblivion. This was a promise of hope and salvation, as God would not leave the world helpless, but would give them His only begotten Son as the gift of grace to all those who believe. What a God of love and goodness to promise this to His children who had just committed high treason against Him. God threw the glorious light of His Word right back at the serpent, as the coming redeemer would not only restore everything Adam and Eve lost in the garden, but utterly destroy the devil and all his works. This was the final death blow of the curse of God on the devil that was boldly pronounced in the garden. God heralded forth this good promise so every fallen angel, including the devil himself, would hear about His magnificent goodness and shudder about their ultimate defeat that would be centered in seed of the woman, the coming Messiah, Liberator, Mediator and Savior to the human race.
Genesis 3:15 (Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible):
And enmity shall I put between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed,-He shall crush thy head, but thou shall crush his heel.
This is a declaration of war! This verse sets forth the fulcrum point of all history and defines the ceaseless battle that has raged since Adam’s fall in the Garden of Eden. This verse is the central theme of all scriptures, as the red thread of the coming Redeemer is interwoven into every book of the Old Testament. Its message is even written in the heavens, as each night the stars proclaim the sufferings and glorious triumph of Christ.
Psalm 19:1-4: The celestial realms announce God’s glory; the skies testify of His hands’ great work. Each day pours out more of their sayings; each night, more to hear and more to learn. Inaudible words are their manner of speech, and silence, their means to convey. Yet from here to the ends of the earth their voices have gone out; the whole world can hear what they say.
Who is this seed of the woman? In conception the seed comes from the male, but God’s Word clearly refers to the woman’s seed here. Seed implies birth, and this verse indicates a virgin birth of a man who would crush the arch-enemy of God. This man is the Savior, the Redeemer, the Liberator, the Messiah, the Second Adam, and the Conqueror over sin and death. This man is the Christ, the Son of the living God. Satan has raging hostility toward the second Adam, for he knows that his head will be crushed by him. This is a fatal blow from which there is no recovery. Once a serpent’s head is crushed, he cannot inject his poison into the world anymore or operate his schemes and deceptions on all mankind. The devil knew that there was a genealogical Christ line that would pass through Eve, as the seed of the woman would have to be born. Later, the Word of God was more specific that this Christ line would pass through Abraham and King David. The entire Old Testament is a record of the fierce attempts of the devil to wipe out the Christ line, and prevent Jesus Christ, the seed of the woman, from ever being born. It is a record of God’s magnificent works and actions that repeatedly delivered the Christ line from extinction. Sometimes the survival of the Christ line rested on the faith of one individual like Noah, Joseph, Abraham, and Esther. God intervened countless times to protect His promise as at times the kingly line of David was down to one son like in 2 Kings 11:1-3: When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal heirs. But Jehosheba, the daughter of King Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him away from among the king’s sons who were being murdered; and they hid him and his nurse in the bedroom, from Athaliah, so that he was not killed. So he was hidden with her in the house of the LORD for six years, while Athaliah reigned over the land. She was the granddaughter of wicked Ahab and it is interesting her name means the oath of the Lord or the Lord has sworn as thru her God was faithful to His promise of this seed being of the kingly line of David. Read the Old Testament with this truth in mind, and the Word of God will come alive in new and wonderful ways.
There is not enough space in this article to go into detail of the countless schemes and plots of the devil to destroy this Christ line, and God’s miraculous protection of it. The salvation and redemption of the human race depended on the preservation of the Christ line. The devil started with the murder of Abel and was absolutely relentless to try to destroy the Seed of the woman who would utterly crush and defeat him. He was not going to go out without a vicious and violent battle where he marshaled all his evil forces to bring about the destruction of the Christ line. This illustrates the verse in 2 Samuel that describes the wondrous works of the Lord: 2 Samuel 12:16 (ESV): Now therefore stand still and see this great thing that the Lord will do before your eyes.
The book of Revelation gives us critical information in determining the day of the birth of Jesus Christ and it is so amazingly accurate that we can pinpoint the birth of Jesus Christ to a specific day and precise time as it occurred sometime within a time frame of eighty one minutes during that day.
Revelation 12:1-5 (KJV): And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered. And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.
The Greek word for “wonder” in verse 1 means “sign” and God’s Word declares that there will be a sign in the heavens when Mary went into labor and gave birth to Jesus Christ. The Word of God is written across the heavens and in the stars. The signs of the Zodiac were originally not used for astrology, but each one signified a characteristic of the life and ministry and kingship of Jesus Christ, the promised Savior and Son of God. The sign of the women that the Bible is referring to here is to the constellation Virgo. Revelation 12 further states that this woman was “clothed with the sun” another celestial body. The sun, as it appears to travel through the ecliptic each year, enters into the mid-body between the neck and the knees of the constellation Virgo, clothing her with the sun, for approximately a 21 day period during any given year. In the year 3 B.C. which we later show by other celestial events in the heavens to be the year of the birth of Jesus Christ, the sun was in this position from August 27th through September 15th. Revelation also declares that “the moon was under her feet.” With these two specific details, we can pinpoint the birth of Christ very precisely. In 3 B.C. the sun and the moon in Virgo occurred on only one day and that was September 11. The configuration of the sun and the moon was visible in Palestine between sunset and moonset, this twilight period being called “night” in the Bible. On September 11, 3 B.C., sunset was at 6:18pm and moonset at 7:39pm. Jesus Christ was born on September 11, 3 B.C sometime in that eighty-one minute span of time between 6:18pm and 7:39pm.
Amazingly this corresponds to Tishri 1 on the Jewish Calendar which is the First day of the festival of the Feast of Trumpets. This was the exact day that many of the ancient kings and rulers of Judah reckoned as their inauguration day of rule. This procedure was followed consistently in the time of Solomon, Jeremiah, and Ezra. This occurs on Tishri 1 in the Fall (Sept.-Oct.). On this day the High Priest blows the ram’s horn announcing the beginning of the New Year. Rosh Hashanah or Jewish New Year is called the Feast of Trumpets in the Bible because it begins the Jewish High Holy Days and Ten Days of Repentance with the blowing of the ram’s horn, the shofar, calling God’s people together to repent from their sins. In the Old Testament the Feast of Trumpets was observed on the first day of the seventh month, which after the Babylonian exile was called “the first of Tishri.” The Jews still observe Rosh Hashanah as their New Year which marks the beginning of what is alternatively called the “Ten Days of Repentance,” or the “Days of Awe.” These are the ten days of introspection and preparation for the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), which falls on the tenth day of the seventh month. While the other appointed feasts are given a name (the Sabbath, the Passover, the Day of Atonement) this feast has no title. It is simply “Yom Teruah–the Day of Blowing” since the blowing of the trumpets became the distinguishing characteristic of the day The blowing of the trumpets was understood to be a call to repent and prepare oneself to stand trial before God who would execute His judgment ten days later on the Day of Atonement. Joel wrote: “Blow the trumpet [shophar] in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming, it is near” (Joel 2:1). Similarly Zephaniah announced “the great day of the Lord” as “a day of trumpet [shophar] blast” ( Joel 1:14,16). The sounding of the shofar has served as a reminder of God’s promise to send the Messiah to gather His scattered children. “And in that day a great trumpet [shofar] will be blown, and those who were lost in the land of Assyria and those who were driven out of the land of Egypt will come and worship the Lord on the holy mountain at Jerusalem” (Is 27:13). On a similar vein, Zechariah wrote that the Lord Himself will blow the shofar when He delivers His people from attacking heathen armies; “Then the Lord will appear over them, and his arrow go forth like lightening; the Lord God will sound the trumpet [shofar], and march forth in the whirlwinds of the south” (Zech. 9:14). The sound of the shofar announces in the Bible not only the first advent of the Messiah (Is 27:13), but also the second coming of Christ. Just as the shofar was sounded to proclaim the freedom and liberation of the Jubilee year, so “the sound of the trumpet” will herald the descent of Christ from heaven (1 Thess. 4:16) to gather the faithful and punish the wicked. It is significant that Paul calls this “the last trumpet” (1 Cor. 15:52), evidently because it is sounded for the last time to mark the consummation of redemption. “Lo! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed” (1 Cor. 15:51-52).On Tishri 1, Isaiah 60-61 is read in the Synagogues to teach the lesson that eventually the Lord will be revealed as King and be accepted as the ruler of the world. Isn’t it amazing that Jesus read from section of scripture in the synagogue at Nazareth for his first sermon as he described his ministry? The Day of Trumpets was also acknowledged as the time for counting the years of their kingly rule. Indeed, it was customary that the final ceremony in the coronation of kings was the blowing of trumpets. For Solomon, “Blow ye the trumpet, and say, ‘God save king Solomon’” (1 Kings 1:34).For Jehu, “And [they] blew with trumpets, saying, ‘Jehu is king’” (2 Kings 9:13). At the enthronement of Jehoash, “The people of the land rejoiced, and blew with trumpets” (2 Kings 11:11).“And the seventh angel sounded [blew the last trump]; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, ‘The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ; and he shall reign forever and ever [for the ages of the ages].’”Revelation 11:15. Many significant Biblical events are said to have occurred on Tishri 1 such as the birth of Adam, the birth of Abraham, the birth of Jacob, the beginning of the rule of Joseph, the new beginning with Noah and the end of the flood, God remembering three barren women Sarah, Rachel and Hannah, and the coming of Moses as the deliver from Egypt.
Jesus was born on Tishri 1, the Feast of Trumpets, and little did Israel know that all day long the trumpets were sounding announcing the birth of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords and God’s only begotten Son.
Matthew 1:18-21 (ESV): Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
There is no salvation in Mohammed. Mohammed cannot save anyone from their sins. The wages of sin is death and Mohammed cannot pay thee wages for they are far too high. There is no salvation in Buddha. Buddha cannot save any person from their sins or pay for the penalty of sin. Wicca’s gods of nature cannot save people from their sinful nature. No idol has the power to overcome sin. No idol can pay the price for sin. This is why Jesus is unique. The name Jesus, Yeshua, means “Yahweh is the saving cry, shout to Yahweh in time of need. Yahweh saves and delivers and Yahweh is salvation.”
Hebrews 9:12, 28 (Amplified): He went once for all into the [Holy of] Holies [of heaven], not by virtue of the blood of goats and calves [by which to make reconciliation between God and man], but His own blood, having found and secured a complete redemption (an everlasting release for us). Even so it is that Christ, having been offered to take upon Himself and bear as a burden the sins of many once and]once for all, will appear a second time, not to carry any burden of sin nor to deal with sin, but to bring to full salvation those who are [eagerly, constantly, and patiently] waiting for and expecting Him.
Acts 4:12 (ESV): And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
I Timothy 2:1-4 (Amplified): For there [is only] one God, and [only] one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,
Mohammed is not a mediator between God and man; Buddha is not a mediator between God and man. Krishna is not a mediator between God and man. They absolutely cannot reconcile a man or woman to God and bring them into intimate fellowship with the Father. It is impossible. Only one road, only one way leads to God and that is through Jesus Christ. It is amazing how many pastors and Christians have waffled on this. Joel Olsteen melted on Larry King when asked if Jesus was the only way and failed to state this truth. Rev. Billy Graham waffled when asked if Jesus is the only way to get heaven implying there were other ways to God. All roads do not lead to God as many of the emergent Christian pastors have proclaimed.
Does the Bible stutter on this point?
I John 5:9-12: If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater, for this is the testimony of God that he has borne concerning his Son. 10 Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son. 11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
There is no LIFE in any of the gods of all the religions on earth other than Christianity for Jesus Christ is the LIFE. If you do not have Jesus Christ, you do not have eternal life and you do not have the very life of God. The Life only rests in him.
Revelation 1:5-8 (KJV): And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, 6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.7 (Amplified)Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth shall gaze upon Him and beat their breasts and mourn and lament over Him. Even so [must it be]. Amen (so be it). 8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
Why are all the tribes of earth beating their breasts, wailing, mourning and lamenting when they see Jesus Christ if there are many ways to heaven, many mediators and many paths to God? Jesus Christ is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end and every person on earth will one day stand before His Judgment Seat.
From my new book “The Heart: The Key to Everything in the Christian Life” to be released in 2014:
“Every human heart will one day while living on this earth come face to face with the rock of offense Jesus Christ. How will our heart respond? Jesus Christ will either bring bountiful joy and immeasurable love into our heart or he will cause our heart to be offended. These are the only two responses. Which path will your heart choose? How our hearts respond to the Rock of Offense is the most important decision our heart will ever make because this single choice will affect everything we ever do for the rest of our life and determine our eternal destiny. When Jesus Christ stands at the door of our heart and knocks and asks us to turn from our selfish ways, take up our cross, forsake all and follow him, will our heart be offended? When Jesus Christ knocks on our heart and says, “I purchased you with my own blood on the cross, you are mine and I want your life,” will your heart be offended? When Jesus Christ says “stand with me as the light in this dark world and you will become the number one enemy of the kingdom of darkness; you will be hated, despised, mocked and ridiculed by friends, family, colleagues, neighbors, and public opinion,” will the rock of offense caused your heart to be offended and stumble? Will offense cause our hearts to turn away from the Lord Jesus for he is simply asking too much of us?
I Peter 2:6-10 (Phillips):
There is a passage to this effect in scripture, and it runs like this: ‘Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on him will by no means be put to shame’. It is you who believe in him that he is “precious”, but to those who disobey God, it is true that: ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone’. And he is, to them, ‘a stone of stumbling and a rock of offence.’ Yes, they stumble at the Word of God for in their hearts they are unwilling to obey it—which makes stumbling a foregone conclusion. But you are God’s “chosen generation”, his “royal priesthood”, his “holy nation”, his “peculiar people”—all the old titles of God’s people now belong to you. It is for you now to demonstrate the goodness of him who has called you out of darkness into his amazing light. In the past you were not “a people” at all: now you are the people of God. In the past you had no experience of his mercy, but now it is intimately yours.”
Luke 2:34 states about Jesus Christ: “Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many.” Our lives will rise or fall depending on what we do with Jesus Christ. Do we accept Him as our Lord and Savior or do we reject him as insignificant. The balances of eternity rise or fall only with Jesus Christ and none other.
Let’s examine a few more wonderful details about the birth of our Savior:
Luke 2:1-7 (ESV): In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.
Historically there is evidence that a registration was conducted throughout the Roman Empire and its subject states in 3 B.C. This registration was for an official declaration of political allegiance to Caesar Augustus as this record was to be presented to Caesar Augustus in celebration of his Silver Jubilee (25th Anniversary-27 B.C. to 2 B.C.) which coincided with the 750th anniversary of the founding of Rome. A logical time of the year for such a registration was September because the weather was mild for travel, the crops were harvested and one Judean civil year was closing and another beginning.
2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 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.
Whenever a son of a king, a prince was born, that child was “salted” and “swaddled.” To salt a child meant that soon after birth the newborn babe was gently washed with water having a small portion of salt in it. Salt symbolized the qualities of truth and honesty. Bathing a newborn in salt water indicated that the child would have these characteristics. His words would be salted. No deceit would be found in his mouth. His words would be honest, truthful and full of integrity. This was also a covenant of salt, one of the oldest covenants in the Bible, where the child is salted in covenant with God in sacred promise that the child’s words and life would be truthful, honest and right before God and his fellow man. After salting the newborn child, strips of fine linen cloth, about two inches wide, were then wrapped around his body. These were called “swaddling clothes.” The child was wrapped from head to foot; with only a part of the head being uncovered so he could breathe. The baby’s body and limbs were held very straight when wrapped in this fashion. These linen strips were not rags and did not mean that Mary and Joseph were poverty-stricken, but rather this was a sign to God that the parents would raise the child to be upright before the Lord, and that he would be free from crookedness and waywardness. The babe would normally be left in swaddling clothes for only a brief period of time, while the parents took time to meditate and make their commitment to God concerning the sacred trust which was given them in having the child. This was a significant Eastern as any child born to nobility or royalty would be salted and swaddled. If this was not done, there would be doubt concerning the person’s integrity in youth and adulthood. Notice the following insult in the Old Testament-Ezekiel 16:4: “thou wast not salted at all, nor swaddled at all.” To say to a noble person, he was not salted or swaddled was to indicate he was unreliable, dishonest and without integrity.
Luke 2:8-20 (KJV): 8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
In December, it is too cold for the shepherds to watch their sheep at night in fields or pastures nor would a registration be conducted this time of year as travel would be difficult. The coldest temperatures, frost, heavy rains and even snow occurred in December. God did not send his angel to declare Jesus Christ’s birth to King Herod or to the high priest or religious leaders or to other wealthy powerful men in Judea. Instead He sent His angel to humble, receptive shepherds-to those he knew would believe and obey. As any proud Father, God wanted the news of the birth of His Son heralded throughout the land and so the shepherds spread the glorious news.
It is safe to say that the two primary heroes in this scintillating saga were a man and woman (probably in her mid-to-late teens) who suddenly found themselves thrust into starring roles on the stage of history. Think first about Mary, a young Hebrew woman chosen by God to bear His Son. Words fail to adequately describe what it must have been like for her when the angel of the Lord appeared to her and made his amazing announcement. She fearlessly asked the angel a very good question, which did not imply doubt, but was simply a request for more information. And when she got the answer, she uttered one of the most faith-filled statements ever spoken: “Behold the handmaid of the Lord. Be it unto me according to your word.” What a woman! And think about Joseph, who discovered that his beloved bride was pregnant. How heartrending, and what a man of character he was, first not to make public their situation, and then to endure the public ridicule he must have gotten as the father of an illegitimate child. Imagine, as Joseph wrestled with this incredibly weighty issue, how his heart must have leapt for joy when the angel told him that the woman he had chosen as his wife and the mother of his children was also the woman God had chosen to be the mother of His Son. Joseph was a man’s man, and a true hero of the faith.
Now let us look about one and a half years later concerning the wise men.
Matthew 2:1-12 (KJV): Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. 3 When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him 4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. 5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,6 And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel. 7 Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared. 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 they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. 11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.
The wise men is the Greek word magoi which is in reference to a specific religious caste called Magi which was prominent in the ancient Near Eastern society especially Persia. How were these Magi knowledgeable about the Judean King? The book of Daniel records that Judeans during the Babylonian captivity, five hundred years before the birth of Christ, wielded great influence in the royal courts where the Magi served. For example, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego all held high offices in the kingdom of Babylon. Daniel 5:11, 12 declares, “O king, live forever! Let not your thoughts alarm you or your color change. 11 There is a man in your kingdom in whom is the spirit of the holy gods.] In the days of your father, light and understanding and wisdom like the wisdom of the gods were found in him, and King Nebuchadnezzar, your father—your father the king—made him chief of the magicians (magi), enchanters, Chaldeans, and astrologers, 12 because an excellent spirit, knowledge, and understanding to interpret dreams, explain riddles, and solve problems were found in this Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Now let Daniel be called, and he will show the interpretation.” The Judean teaching on the celestial message in the stars was attentively listened to in this Babylonian society and the truth concerning His star became assessable knowledge to the Magi when the Persians took over the Babylonian Empire. As recorded in Daniel 6, Daniel retained the high position he had held and “was preferred above the presidents and princes, because an excellent spirit was in him.” Daniel fully instructed the Magi of the accurate knowledge of Bible prophecy written in the stars about the coming Messiah king and this knowledge was passed down among the Magi.
The Magi or wise men did not come to see Jesus until he was about one and one half years old as they begin to track six astronomical events in Leo that captured their attention. These events are as follows: 1. Jupiter and Venus in conjunction in Leo: August 12, 3 B.C. 2. Jupiter and Regulus in conjunction in Leo: September 14, 3 B.C. 3. Jupiter and Regulus in conjunction in Leo: February 17, 2 B.C. 4. Jupiter and Regulus in conjunction in Leo: May 8, 2 B.C. 5. Jupiter and Venus in conjunction in Leo: June 17, 2 B.C. 6. Massing of planets Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, and Venus in Leo with Jupiter and Mars in conjunction: August 27th 3 B.C. The final conjunction in Leo with its massing of planets convinced the Magi that a king had been born in Judea. They began to journey to find the king of the Judeans shortly after this last event. The Bible makes one breathless in its accuracy and integrity. The striking celestial activity told them of the birth of that promised Redeemer, and they set out to find him. Matthew 2:11 tells us that they came to “the house,” not a manger, and saw “the child” (the Greek word paidion), not a “newborn baby” (the Greek word brephos). As the NIV Study Bible says regarding that verse: “Contrary to tradition, the Magi did not visit Jesus at the manger on the night of his birth as did the shepherds. They first came to Jerusalem, apparently thinking that in the capital city of Israel they should be able to find out where the king had been born. After King Herod told them he had been born in Bethlehem, they went there and found him as a ‘child’ in his ‘house.’” That explains why Herod, who had consulted with the Magi as to the time when they saw the star (Matt. 2:7), determined to kill all the Israeli boys under two years old. He knew that Jesus was no longer an infant, and set two years as a safe limit to how old he would have been, which we believe was about 18 months.
I John 4:9,10: In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. 10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
Romans 5:12 (Amplified): Therefore, as sin came into the world through one man, and death as the result of sin, so death spread to all men, [no one being able to stop it or to escape its power] because all men sinned.
Adam introduced sin into God’s creation, and it corrupted all forms of life. The curse of sin and death passed on to all of Adam’s progeny. No human could stop the infiltration of the sin nature or escape its power. Death, which had not existed in any form before, became the strong ally of sin, as every human born on this earth was subject to death. This was not only physical death, but spiritual death also. Sin and spiritual death brought enormous consequences upon the human race. Every type of suffering, pain, misery, sickness, affliction, torment, and anguish began to grow and flourish upon the earth because of sin and spiritual death. A great separation and barrier now existed between God and men, women, and children. The human race’s relationship with God was thrown into chaos and confusion. It was like a thick, iron door was shut on a person’s access, communion, and fellowship with God. Adam and Eve had become alienated from the life and presence of God, and their understanding became darkened. They were like blindfolded people wandering aimless in a fog of darkness. The light and spiritual life within them was extinguished, and it left a great void of hunger and need for their loving Creator. Adam had sealed the fate of the human race, and now the great cry was for a Redeemer, a Savior, and a Liberator. No matter how smart, how talented, how strong, how powerful, or how rich a person may be, no one could free themselves from the bondage of their birth nature of sin and their condition of spiritual death. The word “sin” in Romans 5:12 in the Greek means: to miss or fail to hit the mark, like when someone fails to hit the target with a bow and arrow; to fall short of any goal, purpose, or standard, and a failure or aberration from a prescribed law or duty. Trench, in Synonyms of the New Testament, states that the word means “a falling and missing the true end and scope of our lives which is God.” Wuest, in Word Studies in the Greek New Testament, says it means “missing the divinely appointed goal, a deviation of what is pleasing to God, doing what is opposed to God’s will…a missing of the goal conformable to and fixed by God.”
The goodness of God has its ultimate triumph in the Lord Jesus Christ. Evil has its sentence of doom and ultimate destruction in the Lord Jesus Christ. What Jesus Christ accomplished at Calvary is so magnificent, so awesome and so astounding, that it permanently crippled Satan’s kingdom and one day will obliterate every remnant of it from off the face of the earth. The Lord Jesus Christ broke the curse of sin and death that hangs over the world like a dark cloud. He regained everything that Adam and Eve had lost on that tragic day in the Garden of Eden and so much more. He paid the price for the complete redemption and salvation of the soul of every person who comes to Him. Through Jesus Christ, righteousness is restored to a person so that they can stand in the presence of God without any sense of fear, shortcoming, guilt, or unworthiness. The ability to have deep fellowship and communion with the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ has been recovered and given as a gift to all those who confess Jesus as their Lord and Savior. The Court of God has wiped our slate clean; we are as white as snow, as our redeemer has paid the ransom and penalty for our sin. We no longer have to live in bondage to sin, fear, worry, sickness, disease, poverty, misery, hatred, selfishness, and ignorance, for we reign as kings in life through the Lord Jesus Christ. We can walk in great power, wreaking havoc in Satan’s kingdom on the earth as we touch people with the great healing love and wholeness available in Jesus Christ. You are a super-conqueror; you are a new creation; you are a glorious son or daughter of God with all the dignity that comes with God’s calling through Jesus Christ.
Colossians further elaborates on this head crushing of the serpent by the Seed of the woman, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Colossians 2:14,15 (Message):
When you were stuck in your old sin-dead life,
you were incapable of responding to God. God
brought you alive-right along with Christ! Think
of it! All sins forgiven, the slate wiped clean, that
old arrest warrant canceled and nailed to Christ’s
cross. He stripped all the spiritual tyrants of the
universe of their sham authority at the Cross and
marched them naked through the streets.
Verse 15 (Phillips):
And having drawn the sting of all powers ranged
against us, he exposed them, shattered, empty
and defeated, in his final glorious triumphant act.
In Christ all depression ceases. In Christ all fear and worry melt away. In Christ all oppression is crushed. In Christ all addictions are shattered. In Christ all the chains of bondage are loosed. In Christ all condemnation is obliterated. In Christ we are made free from all the forces of darkness that plague mankind. No religion, idol, and god whether Islam. Buddhism or Hinduism can set a person free from the exercised kingdom of darkness and the clutches of sin and death. Only in Jesus Christ is our redemption, salvation and liberation finished.
THE RED THREAD
Who is the Red Thread? Jesus Christ is the Red Thread of the Bible – the thread that binds the Word of God together…You find him everywhere in the Bible, the Word of God! In Genesis, he is the promised seed of the woman. In Exodus, he is the Passover Lamb. In Leviticus, he is the high priest. In Numbers he is the star to rise out of Jacob. In Deuteronomy, he is the two laws-love God and love your neighbor. In Joshua, he is the captain of the lord of hosts. In Judges, he is the covenant angel named Wonderful. In Ruth, he is the kinsman redeemer. In Samuel, he is the root and offspring of David. In Kings, he is the greater than the Temple. In Chronicles, he is the king’s son. In Ezra and Nehemiah, he is the rebuilder. In Esther, he is the savior of God’s people. In Job, he is the daysman. In Psalms, he is the song. In Proverbs, he is the wisdom of God. In Ecclesiastes, he is the one among a thousand. In Song of Solomon, he is the bridegroom of the bride. In Isaiah, he is Jacob’s branch. In Jeremiah, he is our righteousness. In Lamentations, he is the unbelievers’ judgment. In Ezekiel, he is the true shepherd. In Daniel, he is the stone that became the head of the corner. In Hosea, he is the latter rain. In Joel, he is God’s dwelling in Zion. In Amos, he is the raiser of David’s tabernacle. In Obadiah, he is the deliverer on Mount Zion. In Jonah, he is our salvation. In Micah, he is the lord of kings. In Nahum, he is the stronghold in the time of trouble. In Habakkuk, he is our joy and confidence. In Zephaniah, he is our mighty lord. In Haggai, he is the desire of the nations. In Zechariah, he is our servant-the branch. In Malachi, he is the son of righteousness.
In Matthew, he is Jehovah’s Messiah. In Mark, he is Jehovah’s servant. In Luke, he is Jehovah’s man. In John, he is Jehovah’s Son. In Acts, he is the gift of holy spirit. In Romans, he is the believer’s justification. In Corinthians, he is the believer’s sanctification. In Galatians, he is the
believer’s righteousness. In Ephesians, he is the believer’s heavenly standing. In Philippians, he is the believer’s self adequacy. In Colossians, he is the believer’s completeness. In Thessalonians, he is the believer’s soon glorification. In Timothy, he is the faithful men. In Titus, he is the fellow-laborer. In Philemon, he is the love of a believer. In Hebrews, he is the high priest for sin. In James, he is the royal law. In Peter, he is the pastor. In John, he is as we are. In Jude, he is the beloved. In Revelations, he is the king of kings and lord of lords.
He is the doom of the adversary as promised in Genesis 3:15 and accomplished in Revelation 20:10. He is the “no night” of Revelation 22:5, of which Genesis 1:1 is night. He is the light of Revelation 21:13, of which Genesis 1:16 and 17 is the sun and moon. He is the “no more death, neither sorrow or crying” of Revelation 21:4, of which Genesis 3:16 and 17 is sorrow, suffering, and death. He is the “no more curse” of Revelation 22:3, of which Genesis 3:17 is the curse. He is the welcome home to paradise of Revelation 22:2, of which Genesis 3:22 to 24 is the banishment from paradise.
Who is this Jesus Christ?
He is Abel’s sacrifice, Abraham’s ram, Isaac’s well, Jacob’s ladder. He is Judah’s scepter, Moses’ rod, Joshua’s rams’ horn, Samuel’s horn of oil, David’s slingshot, Hezekiah’s sundial, Elijah’s mantle and Elisha’s staff. He is Job’s prayer, Isaiah’s fig tree, Ezekiel’s wheel, Daniel’s Jerusalem
window, Jonah’s sea monster and Malachi’s storehouse. He is Peter’s shadow, Paul’s handkerchiefs and aprons. He is the lily of the valley and the rose of Sharon in life’s desserts. He is the pearl of great price. He is the rock for pilgrims in a weary land. He is the believer’s justification. He is the believer’s righteousness. He is the believer’s sanctification. He is the believer’s redemption. He is the believer’s knowledge. He is the believer’s wisdom. He is the believer’s all-in-all in all. He is the believer’s completely complete completeness. He is the bright and morning star, and he’s my Lord and my Savior.