‘Twas the night of nights. Cold - freezingly, bitterly, cold. The star-spangled inky blue sky had an aura of unsurpassed peace and tranquillity that permeated the atmosphere. But in Bethlehem there was such a bustle, an unsurpassed bustle where everyone crowded in for registration heeding the Royal Decree.
Joseph of Nazareth likewise came with Mary, the young virgin, who was at the time carrying the Nazarene within her and very close to delivery, having conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, chosen to be the Mother of the predicted Messiah. She was precariously seated on a donkey and Joseph the guardian was looking around desperately for a place of rest for the young mother-to-be.
Ultimately Joseph found a lowly stable, as they were turned away from the over-crowded inns. There his mother gave birth to him- the Nazarene. He, the long-awaited, prophesied, promised, Messiah. He lay there on a bed of straw, wrapped in swaddling clothes, curiously looked on by lowing cattle and bleating lambs and in wonderment and adoration by his mother and foster father.
A tail-star lit up the stable, having sailed across the sky attracting shepherds tending their flocks down in the valley. The air resounded with angelic strains “Glory to God in the highest and on earth Peace to men of goodwill.” The shepherds came in fear and trembling, in awe and respect in wonderment, to adore.
Wise men came from afar
“...o’er field and fountain
Moor and mountain
Following yonder star…..”
They bore gifts of Gold Frankincense and Myrrh symbolic of his kingship, priesthood and death. They worshipped him and went their way.
This family from Nazareth, the young virgin mother, the foster father and the Christ child occupied the stable- a contented holy family. But they were disturbed.
Joseph had a dream. “Take the child and his mother and flee to Egypt” Joseph obeyed the summons and the protective foster father delivered the baby Nazarene from the wrath of Herod. Then when the danger had passed Joseph took the child and his mother to Nazareth where they settled down -Joseph in his carpenter’s shop with Mary attending to her household duties and the child Jesus playing around and helping his foster father in any way he could until he was twelve and set about his father’s work; the Nazarene who would be a preacher and a miracle-worker. And so the Nazarene was born “A long time ago in Bethlehem as the Holy Bible says.”
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