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Author Topic: Christ's Nativity  (Read 3823 times)

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Olde Tymer

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Christ's Nativity
« on: December 10, 2018, 09:57:33 am »
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Luke 1:1-4 . . Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us-- just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us --it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

Luke's report is alleged to have been written somewhere around AD60, roughly thirty± years after the facts. Plus, it's not an eye-witness report; rather, it's essentially the result of investigative reporting.

Luke's report was written neither to or for a church, it was written to and for a specific person; which leads me to believe that Luke wasn't expecting his work to end up in the Bible. Apparently the canon's compilers felt that Luke was "inspired" so his document was included.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2018, 10:30:52 am »
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Luke 1:26-27 . . In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.

Joseph's association with David is extremely important in matters related to theocratic royalty.

That particular sixth month wasn't a date on the Jew's calendar. It was relative to the second trimester of Mary's cousin Elizabeth. (Luke 1:24, Luke 1:36)


NOTE: Mary and Elizabeth were related by blood to Rachel's sister Leah by her two sons Levi and Judah.

The koiné Greek word for "virgin" is parthenos (par-then'-os) which basically means a maiden; particularly a daughter that's not married. In point of fact, at this juncture Mary was engaged.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2018, 05:14:31 am »
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Luke 1:28 . .The angel went to her and said: Greetings, you who are highly favored!

"highly favored" is translated from the Greek word charitoo (khar-ee-to'-o) which means to indue with special honor. It's a rare word that appears in only one other verse in the entire New Testament at Eph 1:6.

The angel wasn't describing Mary's character as if she was an ultra pious Jew. He merely stated that she was the object of a very special blessing; same as Christ's believing followers are the objects of a very special blessing at Eph 1:6, i.e. the angel informed Mary that she was extremely fortunate; though for the moment she had no clue as to why.


NOTE: The Douay Rheims version of Luke 1:28 says that Mary was "full of grace" instead of highly favored and "blessed are you among women". Those phrases aren't translated from the Greek; i.e. editors took the liberty to insert them because in their opinion that's what the passage ought to say even though it doesn't, so we can safely ignore them.

Arbitrary editing can be troublesome at times because the practice erodes our confidence that God inspired the Bible's writers. Sometimes arbitrary editing is helpful; but other times it just muddies the waters.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2018, 10:26:01 am »
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Luke 1:30 . .You have found favor with God.

The Greek word translated "favor" is charis (khar'-ece) a common word for "grace" which, in my estimation, is best understood as gracious; and can be defined as kind, courteous, inclined to good will, generous, charitable, merciful, altruistic, compassionate, thoughtful, cordial, affable, non threatening, genial, sociable, cheerful, warm, sensitive, considerate, and tactful.

The equivalent of charis in the Old Testament is chen (khane); for example:

"Noah found favor with Jehovah." (Gen 6:8)

I think it fair to say that when someone has found favor with God, it probably means that He's taken a liking to them; or at least an interest; for example:

"As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you." (John 15:9)

"How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God; such is what we are." (1John 3:1)
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2018, 09:14:48 am »
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Luke 1:31a . . Behold,

The Greek word translated "behold" is idou (id-oo') which, in this case, means to listen up and pay attention 'cause this is important.

Luke 1:31b . . you will conceive in your womb, and bear a son.

The Greek word translated "conceive" means exactly what it says. We're not talking about a test tube baby here. The very same word is used at Luke 1:24 and Luke 1:36 in talking about Elizabeth's baby.

It's amazing the number of Christians I encounter online who honestly believe that baby Jesus was an implant. i.e. that his mom was a surrogate mother instead of his biological mother.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2018, 08:04:57 am »
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Mary was instructed to give her miraculous baby the name Jesus.

Luke 1:31c . .You are to give him the name Jesus.

Her fiancé Joseph was instructed to do the same.

Matt 1:20-21 . . An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said: Joseph son of David . . . you are to give him the name Jesus

Joseph complied.

Matt 1:25 . . And he gave him the name Jesus.

So Christ went in the books as Joseph's son because that's how it worked in those days when a man stood with a woman to name her child. (cf. Luke 1:59, Luke 2:21)

From that day on; Joseph was identified by all, including Mary, as Jesus' father. (Matt 13:55, Luke 2:27, Luke 2:41, Luke 2:48)

Now; the thing to note is that adopted children have just as much legal right to an inheritance as a father's biological children; especially a right to the father's name; and that's how baby Jesus got into Joseph's genealogy at Matt 1:1-17. Had the little guy been Joseph's foster child, or his stepchild; then it would've been fraud for Matthew to place the boy in Joseph's genealogy.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2018, 03:27:01 pm »
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Matt 1:21 . . He shall save his people from their sins.

The word "save" is from the koiné Greek word sozo (sode'-zo) which basically means to rescue and/or protect. Rescuers typically provide their services to desperate people who are thoroughly incapable of getting themselves out of overwhelming difficulties; e.g. Firemen, Emergency Medical teams, snow patrols, mountain units, and the Coast Guard and National Guard.

"his people" refers to the Jews.

Heb 2:16-17 . . Assuredly he does not give help to angels, but he gives help to the descendants of Abraham. Therefore, he had to be made like his brethren in all things, that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.

Baby Jesus didn't descend from Aaron, so his high priesthood would not be in accord with the covenant that Moses' people agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. Jesus' high priesthood would be in accord with a Gentile high priest; in point of fact, baby Jesus' high priesthood would be in accord with a man whose ethnic identity isn't known, nor is anything known about his family or his ancestors.

The boy was to become a high priest in accord with a man that the Jews have heard of, but never actually seen for themselves. His name is Melchizedek; mentioned way back in the past in association with Abraham. (Gen 14:18-20, Ps 110:1-4, Heb 6:20-7:22)

Now, unless "his people" extends all the way back to Abraham, then the rescue referred to in Matt 1:21 would be limited to some of his people but not all. But according to Isa 53:6, it's all; which is a tremendous improvement over Aaron's high priesthood. His isn't retroactive that far back. It only extends to the year of the installation of the covenant that Moses' people agreed upon with God as per the books of the covenant. (Deut 5:2-4)

Another big improvement is that Aaron couldn't save his people from their sins; he could only offer atonements for them; while Mary's boy would both atone and save.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2018, 09:51:29 am »
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Matt 1:18 . . 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.

Mary must've let the cat out of the bag because the angel of the Lord had not yet informed Joseph of God's involvement in his best girl's baby. But I really don't think Joseph believed Mary's story because his next thought was to dump her.

Matt 1:18-19 . . Joseph her husband, being a righteous man, and not wanting to disgrace her, desired to put her away quietly.

The covenant that Moses' people agreed upon with God requires engaged women to be executed when they willingly sleep with another man.

Deut 22:23-24 . . If a man happens to meet in a town a virgin pledged to be married and he sleeps with her, you shall take both of them to the gate of that town and stone them to death-- the girl because she was in a town and did not scream for help, and the man because he violated another man's wife.

But the law is very particular in capital cases. Nobody can be executed for such crimes sans the testimony of a minimum of two witnesses.

Deut 17:6-7 . . At the mouth of two witnesses, or three witnesses, shall he that is worthy of death be put to death; but at the mouth of one witness he shall not be put to death. The hands of the witnesses shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterward the hands of all the people.

The Bible says that Joseph was a righteous man; which means that he was a stickler for due process.

So then, in the absence of two witnesses, Joseph had to let his fiancée slide; the very same reason why grown-up Jesus let slide a woman caught red-handed in adultery. (John 8:9-11)
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2018, 07:51:17 am »
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Matt 1:20a . .The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said: Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

According to Matt 1:18, Joseph had been apprised of God's involvement in his best girls' baby; but didn't believe it. The angel's corroboration became essential to prevent the couple from parting company.

Incidentally; the koiné Greek word for "wife" just simply means woman. The difference is made by modifying it with a possessive pronoun so that "your wife" is actually your woman.

It's not too difficult to figure out why Joseph was afraid to go thru with the engagement. I mean; just think how humiliating it would be for a decent man to stand before friends and family to marry a girl coming down the aisle pregnant with another man's baby.

And besides; if Mary was already sleeping around, who's to say she wouldn't sleep around again later on after she and Joseph were married? No; immoral girls are a bad bet because they can't be trusted to be faithful and true.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2018, 07:22:24 am »
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Matt 1:22-23 . . Now all this took place that what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet might be fulfilled, saying: Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel; which translated means: God with us.

The prophet's name was Isaiah, and the prophecy is located in verse 14 of the 7th chapter of his book.

Joseph and Mary were instructed to name her baby "Jesus". So the identity of "they" in the prophecy isn't his parents. It's actually the Jews.

Luke 7:14-17 . . Jesus came up and touched the coffin; and the bearers came to a halt. And he said: Young man, I say to you, arise! And the dead man sat up, and began to speak. And Jesus gave him back to his mother. And fear gripped them all, and they began glorifying God, saying: God has visited His people! And this report concerning him went out all over Judea, and in all the surrounding district.


NOTE: The name Emmanuel (a.k.a. Immanuel) appears only three times in the whole Bible: twice in Isaiah, and once in Matthew.
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« Last Edit: December 18, 2018, 08:56:42 am by Olde Tymer »

Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2018, 10:33:26 am »
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Matt 1:24-25 . . When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord commanded. He brought Mary home to be his wife, but she remained a virgin until her son was born.

The couple didn't marry right away. According to Luke 2:1-7 they journeyed to Bethlehem as an engaged couple rather than a married couple.

At first glance it appears that Mary and Joseph began shacking up; but I hardly think so. The Bible says Joseph was a righteous man. Well; righteous men don't shack up. The "home" that Joseph brought Mary to was likely his family's home rather than a bachelor pad.

Preachers sometimes compose whole sermons to explain why Joseph didn't sleep with Mary right away, but the fact of the matter is: she and Joseph weren't wed till sometime after Jesus was born. Well; righteous men are men of character with high moral standards; viz: they don't sleep with women they aren't married to.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2018, 08:08:32 am »
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Luke 1:31-32 . . Listen carefully: you will conceive in your womb and bear a son . . and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father.

In order for David to be Jesus' father, he had to be Mary's father too because her pregnancy wasn't man-made.

Stay with me because I'm going to trace Jesus' biological genealogy all the way back to Adam.

Acts 13:22-23 . . "I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfill all my will." Of this man's seed hath God, according to His promise, raised unto Israel a savior, Jesus.

Rom 1:1-3 . . Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh

The koiné Greek word for "seed" in those two passages is  sperma (sper' mah) which is a bit ambiguous because it can refer to spiritual progeny as well as to biological progeny; for example:

Gal 3:29 . . If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed.

That seed is obviously spiritual progeny. But the seed in Acts 13:22-23 and Rom 1:1-3 is biological progeny because David's seed is "according to the flesh" i.e. his physical human body.

Now, unless somebody can prove clearly, conclusively, iron clad, and without spin and sophistry that David's body was in no way biologically related to Adam's body, then we have to conclude that baby Jesus' body was also biologically related to Adam's body.

Seen from another angle:

Eve's body was made from Adam's body. (Gen 2:21-23)

Consequently, when children are conceived by women that are biologically related to Eve, then their children are biologically related to Adam: whether naturally-conceived or virgin-conceived makes no difference, i.e. every child that biologically descends from Eve also biologically descends from Adam.

Gen 3:15 . . I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.

It's pretty much agreed by most Christians that Eve's predicted offspring was realized in Christ; which means that baby Jesus was not only Eve's biological offspring but Adam's too because her body was made with material taken from Adam's body.

So then; in order to cut Jesus out of Adam's biological posterity it would be necessary to cut Mary out of Eve's biological posterity; and I've yet to encounter anyone either online or in church able to do that.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Nativity
« Reply #12 on: December 21, 2018, 07:51:07 am »
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Q: Was it really necessary for Joseph to adopt Mary's baby?

A: It was essential because God selected Jesus to inherit David's throne. (Luke 1:32)

Mary was directly related to David (Rom 1:1-3) but the monarchy passes down through David's son Solomon. (1Kgs 1:16-39)

Jesus' mom wasn't directly related to Solomon, she was directly related to Solomon's brother Nathan (Luke 3:31, Luke 3:23) so Mary's little boy couldn't inherit the monarchy through her. And besides, Israel's monarchy always passed down through David's males; never his females.

Joseph, on the other hand, was directly related to Solomon (Matt 1:6, Matt 1:16) so that any progeny of Joseph's, whether biological or adopted, would be Solomon's progeny.

Q: Is there an example in the Bible to support this adoption theory of yours?

A: At Gen 48:5-7, Jacob set a patriarchal precedent by adopting his two grandsons Manasseh and Ephraim; and by doing so installed them in positions equal in rank, honor, power, and privilege to his twelve original sons; thus legally increasing Jacob's total number of tribal heads from twelve to fourteen.

Jacob's motive for adopting Joseph's two sons wasn't for himself; it was in sympathy for his beloved wife Rachel being cut off during her child-bearing years, which subsequently prevented her from having any more children of her own. Ephraim and Manasseh bring Rachel's legal total up to six: two of her own, two by the maid Bilhah, and two by Asenath.

Q: If Jesus inherited the Davidic monarchy via adoption, then wouldn't he have inherited Jeconiah's curse right along with it? (Jer 22:29-30)

A: Yes; because the monarchy and the curse were a package deal.

However; the wording "to rule again in Judah" indicates that the curse on Jeconiah's royal progeny was limited to the era of the divided kingdom. That condition came to an end when Nebuchadnezzar crushed the whole country and led first Samaria, and then later Judah, off to Babylonian slavery.

When Messiah reigns, the country of Israel will be unified. His jurisdiction won't be limited to Judah within a divided kingdom, but will dominate all the land of Israel. So the curse doesn't apply to him.

Ezek 37:21-22 . .You shall declare to them: Thus said the Lord God: I am going to take the Israelite people from among the nations they have gone to, and gather them from every quarter, and bring them to their own land. I will make them a single nation in the land, on the hills of Israel, and one king shall be king of them all. Never again shall they be two nations, and never again shall they be divided into two kingdoms.


NOTE: The New Testament's ancient Greek manuscripts typically contain no punctuation. So whatever punctuation we see in English was arbitrarily inserted in the text solely at the discretion of translators. In reality, the punctuation we see in English texts is an educated guess; consequently we cannot always be sure that their editing is reliable and/or unbiased.

For example; English punctuation in some versions of Luke 3:23-24 make it appear that the genealogy in Luke is Joseph's which, if so, would make him directly related to Solomon's brother Nathan. But if we take the liberty to remove all the arbitrary punctuation from that passage, we can then easily show that the genealogy is actually Mary's rather than Joseph's; viz: Heli, (a.k.a. Eli) is Mary's dad.

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« Last Edit: December 21, 2018, 09:05:24 am by Olde Tymer »

 

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