|> Christianity > Bible > Luke >|
|Luke 2: The Birth of Jesus|
|One of the great chapters of the Bible.|
Why is this chapter called great? In a stately, artful fashion Luke locates the humble birth of Jesus in the midst of the mighty Roman Empire. People have been captivated by the vivid telling of the Christmas story: Jesus being born among the animals, the chorus of angels singing to the shepherds in a remote field and the shepherds kneeling at the manger.
A key verse
There is something striking and somber, about the way this story begins. A powerful, feared, revered leader, at the center of the most powerful empire in the world issues a sweeping decree. We see how this sets in motion the most humble of people. But those humble people are about a purpose that will dwarf the might of the Empire itself.
The story told in this chapter can be thought of has having four episodes:
Episode 1: verses 1-7, The Birth of Jesus
Episode 2: verses 8-21, The Shepherds
Episode 3: verses 22-38, Simeon and Anna prophesy about Jesus
Episode 4: verses 39-52, Jesus Grows Up
If you liked this chapter
Matthew 1 (starting at verse 18) and Matthew 2. When you read Luke, did you wonder where was the "star in the east", the wise men, or the flight to Egypt of Mary and Joseph and the baby Jesus? Those stories are in Matthewís gospel.
What about the other gospels, Mark and John? Interestingly, they donít tell explicitly about the birth of Jesus. They do have striking ways of beginning their stories about Jesus. Itís a good study to compare all four.
Here are some questions that you might want to think about or discuss: