What does the helpless Babe lying in an animal feed trough tell us about what God is like? In the story of Jesus' birth as recorded in Matthew and Luke, we are given a window into His breathtaking meekness and humility. From the circumstances leading up to His birth to that beautiful moment in Bethlehem, God forever declared His love and desire for the creatures He made to be with Him and to see His glory.
All resources referencing Luke
In the little town of Bethlehem in southern Israel, Jesus, the future King of Israel and the Maker of all things, is born to two young, frightened parents. What was this really like? Though our yearly Christmas pageants and Hollywood have taken creative license on many of the details, the story of Jesus' birth from the Gospels is a remarkable one. This episode examines just a couple of verses from Luke 2.
Mary and Joseph travel from Nazareth to Bethlehem, a small historic town in Judea. Though Caesar's hand seemingly is driving them southward for a census, God's hand was in their journey, preparing them and keeping them along what was perhaps a week-long journey. Mary is very pregnant with Jesus at this point. Learn more about their trip and what it must have been like for them in this episode as we look at chapter 2 in the Gospel of Luke.
On a real night over 2000 years ago, Joseph lay his head down to sleep, undoubtedly troubled in his soul as everything in his life had been turned upside down. The one he loved was pregnant, and not by him! But on that night, he received a dream from the Lord in which an angel gave him confidence to take Mary as his wife. The child within her was indeed of the Holy Spirit, and she had not been unfaithful to him as he presumed. This episode discusses Matthew 1, verses 20-25.
After at least 9 months of being mute, Zechariah's son John is born. His tongue is loosed and he prophesies that his child will "go before the Lord to prepare his ways". Mary returns to Nazareth, seemingly after John was born, and walks into perhaps the hardest season of her life thus far. She had returned home after 3 months and was showing her pregnancy. What must this have been like for this "highly favored" young woman? Find out in this episode.
While Herod and the leaders of the Jews are filled with self-importance and jockey for power in Jerusalem, God's eyes are on two expectant mothers in a small house in southern Israel. Mary and Elizabeth, the mother of Jesus and John, were the two most important people on the planet at the time. This episode looks at Mary's visit to Elizabeth from Luke 1.
Once again scripture records the angel Gabriel's appearance, this time to a young girl named Mary from a despised town in northern Israel called Nazareth. Not only did Gabriel tell Mary that she was going to be with child by the Holy Spirit, but that her son would be the king that God had promised to David many years before. What was this like and what was Mary's reaction to Gabriel's words? This episode looks at Luke 1:26-38.
In Luke 1, Zechariah is ministering in the Temple, standing and offering incense to the LORD. The angel Gabriel appears to Zechariah and says "your prayer has been heard". Because Zechariah's wife Elizabeth was barren, Gabriel's statement contains a double-meaning for both the aged couple and for Israel. This episode examines Luke 1:11-25 and Gabriel's announcement of the birth of John the Baptist.
Luke begins his Gospel by giving us details of an aged couple, Zechariah and Elizabeth, from the hill country of Judea. Herod the Great ruled over Judea at the time, and Zechariah's priestly course was on duty in the Temple in Jerusalem. Who was Herod? What is the Temple and why is Zechariah there? And what is the significance of these events to the story of Jesus and the Gospels? This episode seeks to answer these questions.
For more information on Herod the Great:
John's Gospel is perhaps the most unique one out of the four. In this episode, I cover John's author, the date it was written, and some of the major themes and literary style of the book. John narrates much of Jesus' activity in and around Jerusalem, focusing on several Jewish feasts (Passover, Tabernacles, Dedication). John also heavily emphasizes Christology, the study of the identity of Jesus, and proclaims that he wrote his gospel to help others put their faith in Him.