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The Birth Announcement

Luke 2:1-52 All that we know of Jesus’ childhood is contained within this passage and Matthew 1:18-2:23; however, I will limit my comments to this passage alone. Joseph took with him, to Bethlehem, Mary, to whom he was engaged, but had not yet known intimately, for she was with child; she gave brith to her firstborn son, and she wrapped him in cloths, and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. An angel of the Lord appeared to some shepherds, keeping watch over their flocks in the field by night. The angel announced the birth of the Savior for them and all people. They did not ask for a sign, but the angel gave them one: “you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” After this, a multitude of heavenly host came praising God. The shepherds believed, so they went to go see, and told the child’s parents what the angel told them. Jesus was the name given through the angel before he was conceived; therefore, after eight days, he was circumcised

Unbelief vs Amazement

Luke 1:1-80 The first chapter of Luke’s gospel is one of the longest in all of Scripture but I cannot imagine it being divided up, because the entire chapter is a story with its own chapters. The first chapter of Luke’s gospel should be understood as the prologue or prequel to the birth of the Son of God.  There are five chapters within this first chapter of Luke’s gospel: The introduction, written to some man name Theophilus. Luke’s greeting indicates that Theophilus a man of some governmental authority. Second, the birth of John the Baptist foretold to Zacharias by the angel Gabriel. Third, the birth of Jesus foretold to Mary by the angel Gabriel. Fourth, Mary’s visit to her relative Elizabeth, whom she visited for three months before returning home. Lastly, the birth and circumcision of John the Baptist. The two main characters are Zacharias and Mary. Zacharias representing unbelief and Mary representing amazement. Zacharias questioned the angel Gabriel, “How will I know this for ce

The Law Humbles

Deuteronomy 17:1-20 It is a detestable thing to sacrifice to the Lord oxen and sheep with defects. Judgments must come after a thorough investigation. No man or woman is to be put to death if he or she is accused by a single person, but their must be at least two witnesses and three witnesses are better.  However, the sons of Israel were not to put up with a man or woman among them, who worships other gods ,and or the created things in the universe. The town judges shall hear most cases, but the Levitical priest, or the judge whom the Lord has risen up will hear the difficult cases; the sons of Israel are to observe their decisions. When the sons of Israel desire a human king, he must not be a foreigner, but one of their own countrymen, a man whom the Lord choses among them. This king shall not serve himself and multiply his riches! This law, this sermon called Deuteronomy, is to be copied by the king, he shall have it with him, and read it all the days of his life. This will cause him

Remembrance of grace

Deuteronomy 16:1-22 Three times a year, all the men of Israel, are commanded to meet as one congregation before the Lord their God in the place which he chooses: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread and at the Feast of Weeks and at the Feast of Booths. No man shall come empty-handed, but every man shall give in accordance to the blessing that the Lord God has given him. Their culture was agrarian; therefore, their meeting together centered around feasts.  The first feast, the Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread was in the month of Abib, the first month in the Jewish calendar. This commemorated the Exodus from Egypt. They were to sacrifice the Passover Lamb, in the evening, at the place that the Lord God designated among them, then eat unleavened bread for severn days. The seventh day of this feast was to be a solemn assembly to the Lord their God. So, the first feast commemorates the Lord’s Passover of their first born in Egypt, and their Exodus from Egypt, but the next two feasts have

The Remission of Debts

Deuteronomy 15:1-23 Every seven years the sons of Israel were to grant a remission of debts , not exacting what is owed from his neighbor and his brother because the Lord has given them remission. The sons of Israel were to freely give to the poor and needy without regard to the nearness of the seventh year, the year of remission, for the Lord promises a blessing if they give but considers it sin if they do not. The Lord allows poor to be in the land as a test. All Hebrew slaves are to be released from service in the seventh year and are to be provided well at their release; however, they may stay, not by coercion, but if it is their desire and an awl shall pierce their ear into the door and they shall serve that household forever. They shall not think it difficult to set a Hebrew slave free. Once a year, all the first born of the herd and flock were to be eaten before the Lord their God in the place that he chooses; however, if it has a defect, it shall not be sacrificed to the Lord b

Mercy Extended

Deuteronomy 14:1-29 The sons of Israel were to be different because they are chosen as the Lord’s possession. Of the Land animals, they could only eat animals that have split hooves and chew the cud. Of the water animals, they could only eat fish that have both scales and fins. They could eat grain eating birds but could not eat meat eating birds. They could not eat anything that died of itself and they could not boil a young goat in its mothers milk to eat it. They were to take one-tenth of the produce each year and eat it together as one, at the place where the Lord chose to establish his name. They were to remember the Levite in their town and provide for the needs of the Levite. Every third year, they were to give the tithe to Levite, the alien, the orphan and the widows who live in their hometown.  This section of Moses’ great sermon, “Deuteronomy,” reminds me of Matthew 5:21-46. This section of Jesus great sermon, “The Sermon on the Mount,” has nothing to do with food regulations

Destroy Idolatry

Deuteronomy 13:1-18 If a prophet or dreamer of dreams arises among you who gives you a sign or a wonder and the sign or wonder comes true, if he says, “Let us go after other gods and let us serve them,” do not listen to that prophet or dreamer of dreams. The Lord God is allowing him to perform signs and wonders to test you, to see if you will go after other gods. You are to love and serve the Lord your God only. This spokesmen shall be put to death because he has tried to seduce you from the way. All evil shall be purged from among you. Even if it is a friend or family member, if they try to seduce you to go after other gods and serve them, do not listen to them and they shall be put to death. If a city in Israel becomes seduced, then that city shall be destroyed and no booty shall be taken from it. It is likely that the Sanhedrin used the law, given by Moses in Deuteronomy 13, to arrest Jesus and put him to death. Even today, the Jew believes that the Christian worships another god, a