On Sunday evening I was listening to a recorded radio program featuring Bill Pierce. He was talking about the birth of Jesus and he read a short portion of a book about that evening. Unfortunately, I didn't catch the name of the author or the title. But what he read said that Joseph was probably pacing outside the stable, like men have done for centuries, while Mary delivered. When Mary finally called him, he entered the stable and saw the beautiful baby Jesus, the Messiah, wrapped in cloth, in the manger. My first reaction when I heard that explanation was that with the exception of his pacing, this certainly was not like any birth I had been part of. My wife was never left alone to deliver the baby by herself. She had a team of doctors and nurses. And when I first saw the baby, seldom was it all cleaned up. Now I have never thought before about this part of this miraculous birth. Was Mary, this teenage mother, actually alone and was she able to clean up herself and the baby before her husband came in? I've come up with a few possible explanations. (1) Maybe she was alone and God gave her this miraculous strength and wisdom. Certainly God could do that. (2) Maybe God sent angels to help her. There certainly were angels nearby that night. (3) Maybe the inn keeper summoned a midwife since he knew how pregnant she appeared. I imagine the town of Bethlehem must have had such help available. But then, why wouldn't this person be identified, especially when she would have been the first to see the human form of the Messiah. (4) Maybe Joseph wasn't outside. Maybe he was with Mary and helped her with the delivery. I personally tend to believe this option. Joseph had probably endured all sorts of ridicule when his betrothed became pregnant out of wedlock. I'd like to think that God would have honored what Joseph had endured by allowing him to be the first one to touch and hold the Messiah, God incarnate. But I guess we'll not know until we get to heaven. So what do you think actually happened? Why not leave your answer in a comment below? Tell us what you think.
4 days ago