🌟 Jesus’ birth was foretold, in detail.
There is so much more depth to the Christmas story than what most people realize. We’re celebrating something miraculous. One of the miracles of the Christmas story would be the many prophecies concerning Jesus’ birth that were given hundreds of years before Jesus came. These prophecies were specific and gave detail about the birth of the Messiah that would have been impossible for someone (especially a baby) to intentionally fulfil, and yet Jesus perfectly fulfilled every prophecy concerning His birth. Let’s look at some of these prophecies.
In their book Science Speaks, Peter W. Stoner and Robert C. Newman say that the odds of any one man in all of history fulfilling only eight of the 60 major prophecies (and 270 ramifications) fulfilled by the life of Christ are 1 in 100, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000.
“3 I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
Genesis 12:3 (NKJV)
No one gets to choose which family they are born into. This is a prophecy of the Messiah coming in the family line of Abraham, resulting in all families of the earth being blessed. Remarkably, this prophecy was given about 2000 BC and perfectly fulfilled in Christ:
“The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham”
Matthew 1:1 (NKJV)
“So then those who are of faith (in Christ) are blessed with believing Abraham.”
Galatians 3:9 (NKJV) – brackets mine
This prophecy reminds us of the life-changing truth that God’s blessing is available to all people through Jesus. As soon as someone places their faith in Christ, they gain access to that blessing. And more than 4 000 years ago, God was already sending out the promise of this good news to His people!
About 700 years before Jesus was born, the prophet Isaiah foretold of His miraculous virgin birth:
“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”
Isaiah 7:14 KJV
A virgin shall conceive sounds ridiculous – impossible – but it was fulfilled in Christ.
“18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly. 20 But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”
22 So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: 23 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.”
Matthew 1:18-23 NKJV
No one gets to choose where they are born. Mary and Joseph lived in Nazareth which is 111kms from Bethlehem (about two day’s journey by donkey). Mary and Joseph weren’t planning to be in Bethlehem but just before Mary’s due date the King ordered everyone to return to their home town for a census –Joseph and Mary weren’t trying to fulfil prophecy, and yet their obedience to the government helped to fulfil the prophecy that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.
“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Though you are little among the thousands of Judah,
Yet out of you shall come forth to Me
The One to be Ruler in Israel,
Whose goings forth are from of old,
Micah 5:2 NKJV
“And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. 3 So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.
4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. 6 So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”
Luke 2:1-7 NKJV
All the prophecies of Jesus’ birth make the chances of just anyone fulfilling them extremely unlikely – impossible, in fact. The prophecies and their fulfilment all point towards a purposeful move by God to redeem mankind from sin and destruction because of His great love for us!
“4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”
Galatians 4:4-5 (ESV)
March 19, 2019
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