The Birth of Jesus | Luke 2:1-20; Matthew 2:1-12; Micah 5:2
Many years ago a prophet predicted the Son of God would be born in Bethlehem, a small town. But Mary and Joseph lived in a different town. The ruler gave orders for a census to be taken, and everyone was to return to his own town to register. So Joseph took Mary his wife and went to Bethlehem.
It was near the time for Mary to give birth to her child. While Joseph and Mary were in Bethlehem, Mary gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him in cloths and laid him in a manger (a feeding trough for animals). There was no room for them in an inn because of the census, so they were staying with the animals.
In the fields near Bethlehem shepherds were keeping watch over their sheep at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord was shining down from heaven. The shepherds were terrified. Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. Today in the town of Bethlehem a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
Suddenly a great number of angels appeared and began to praise God saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom His favor rests.” When the angels had gone away into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph and the baby, who was lying in a manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what the angels had said about this child. All who heard the shepherds were amazed. So the shepherds returned to their flocks praising God for what they had seen and heard.
Some time later there came wise men from a far country seeking the one born king of the Jews. They followed a star to Bethlehem and came to the house where Mary and Joseph were living. They bowed down and worshiped Jesus and presented costly gifts of gold, incense and an ointment called myrrh.