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Faith: And it came to pass

Local faith columnist John Eggers presents his viewpoint.

Luke’s Gospel has by far the most uses of the phrase “it came to pass.”

This phrase is used at least 41 times in the Bible, in the book of Luke. It is an indication that Luke follows a very straightforward logical path of writing that is easy to follow.

Luke 2:1 starts with one of these uses of “it came to pass.” The subject of verses 1 to 7 is the account of the birth of Jesus Christ.

We read that Caesar Augustus had levied some sort of tax or census. This decree of Caesar just happened to make it necessary for Joseph and Mary to go to Bethlehem.

Micah 5:2 was written about 710 years before God’s son would be born in Bethlehem, so it would be better to say that God was directing all of the many prophecies concerning Christ to be fulfilled. Micah 5:2 states, “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.”

John 1:14 states that “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.”

Further on, we read that Joseph and Mary came to Bethlehem and that Mary was “great with child.” I

t wasn’t the most convenient time for the couple, but they had to go to Bethlehem, so there they were.
It was necessary for Jesus to come down from heaven. He had to “bear our sins in his own body on the tree,” according to 1 Peter 2:24.

There was no other way to make it possible for us to be saved from the penalty of sin.

We don’t read of any complaints or groaning from this young couple as they obeyed God’s purpose for their lives.

We read that Mary’s “days were accomplished that she should be delivered.”

And she brought forth her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger.

Swaddling clothes are strips of cloth that were commonly used to keep a child warm.

There was no designer blanket to wrap him in, but the young couple did what they could with what they had.

Jesus was laid in a manger, which is a feeding trough for animals.

It is amazing how the Lord humbled himself and was obedient unto death, even the death of the cross (Philippians 2:8).

God’s word tells us Jesus has been raised from the dead and lives in the power of an endless life.

He has died for all of us, but we need to receive him while we have an opportunity. Salvation is a free gift, but it cost God’s son a tremendous price that cannot be measured fully.

After the account of the birth of Jesus Christ at the beginning of chapter two, Luke directs our thoughts to the shepherds, who had a multitude of angels visit them in the night.

There was first just one angel that came to speak to the shepherds.

We read that the shepherds were afraid when they saw the angel.

The angel said, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

And this shall be a sign unto you; ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men.”

After that, the angel with the heavenly host went away from the shepherds and the shepherds went to find the baby — and they found him just as they were told.

John Eggers is an elder in the assembly that meets in Westsyde Gospel Hall in Kamloops. KTW welcomes submissions to its Faith page. Columns should be a maximum of 700 words in length and include a headshotof the author, along with a short bio on the writer. Email