By: Aaron Clifford
There was no Starbucks, no taobao, no Christmas gifts, no Christmas trees, no chestnuts roasting on open fires, and no Santa Clause. There was no Christmas Movies, no singing jingle bells, there was no decking the halls and no mistletoe. Then what was there that first Christmas? What Happened that first Christmas?
We have three different stories all happening at once. We have Mary and Joseph, Shepherds, and Wisemen and we see there stories all collide for one magnificent event.
Let’s first look at Mary and Joseph. Mary didn’t call the water guy to come and deliver she went and got the water. While there she had this super awe inspiring Encounter this glowing supernatural being called an angel whose name was Gabriel. Now why would an angel out of the blue come and meet with a 14 year old girl? Well because she was special. God chose her to be the mother of his son. This like a once in a lifetime opportunity and she was shocked but excited at the same time. Then we have Joseph who after hearing that Mary was pregnant wanted to completely disown her. Now he had a similar encounter to that of Mary and was told by the same angel, that he needed to stay with her and not disown her. So that’s what he did and they headed to Bethlehem.
Now somewhere off in the far east there were some scientists and astrologists who in those days were considered wise, who saw a star and began to chart its location. They saw that the location of the star was placed over a small town called Bethlehem. They knew that it was a sign that something great was about to take place. The star was a sign that the King of Kings was about to be born. So the wisemen put together gifts of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh and headed on their way to Bethlehem.
As Mary and Joseph approached Bethlehem they searched through out the town for a place to stay. Now in those there was no Holiday Inn, no Crown Plaza or Best Western. There were just small flats that had rooms in them and an inn keeper. As they searched high and low for a place to stay they couldn’t find anything. Now one of the inn keepers had a small barn under their flat and said they could stay there.
While Mary and Joseph were preparing the arrival for Jesus to be born, there were shepherds out in the field watching their sheep. Now here’s the interesting part we have the King of Kings about to be born and angels showed up to visit shepherds.
Why Shepherds? Why would angels come to visit shepherds? Why not visit the levites or even King Herod? Well let’s look deeper. Jesus is from the line of David. What was David? A shepherd. We also know the Jesus is the good shepherd so it’s only fitting that the Angels would come that particular night to visit the shepherds.
So the angels showed up and the brought this amazing message of Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. The message was that there would be born and a wonderful counsellor, mighty and awesome God, an eternal Father, and a Prince of Peace. This message certainly seems fitting to be told to a king but they shared it with a bunch of sheep herders. Then the angels broke out in song singing a really catchy tune that probably the the shepherds began singing.
“Glory to God in the Highest, Peace on earth, and goodwill to men.”
Then they disappeared. The shepherds looked at each other probably said “WOW!!! This is incredible let’s see this prince the angels speak of. Let’s go to Bethlehem.” So off they went and when they arrived the most amazing, radiant and heavenly event happened. God came to earth in the form of a little baby and he was named Jesus, and Immanuel (God with us). The Word became flesh that night.
Finally after a long journey and a visit with King Herod, the Wisemen showed up to see Mary and Joseph with gifts that would only be fitting for a king. At the time they showed up Mary and Joseph had relocated to a flat within Bethlehem. The Wisemen worshipped the week old Saviour of the world. They warned Mary and Joseph of Herod’s plans for Jesus and then headed back to where came from, but took and different route.
This is the first Christmas. This is why over 2000 years later we come together every year to celebrate. But this story doesn’t end here Jesus grew up and did what he said he would do and that is be the Saviour of the world.