Advent Guide: Week 1 Midweek Devotion
December 2 - December 13
The City of Bethlehem
Scripture Readings: Luke 2:1-6
By Jay Fennell, Discipleship Minister, The Church at Nolensville
“And Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family line of David.” Luke 2:4
I’m fascinated how meteorologists predict the changes in weather patterns by using several different tools. They measure atmospheric conditions that occurred in the past and present, then they apply this information to create educated guesses or predictions about the future weather. Meteorologists make educated guesses because they can’t control the weather. The best they can do is observe atmospheric data and apply this information to what they think will happen in the future. Even though they are experts, they often get the weather forecast wrong. They can never claim 100% accuracy.
We worship a God who is 100% accurate in His predictions and forecasts about future events. How? Unlike meteorologists, our God controls all things and can make His promises come to fulfilment because of His mighty power.
We see God’s power in Luke 2:1-6. This passage is the fulfillment of a prediction or prophesy God made hundreds of years before through the prophet Micah, he spoke to Israel about a ruler who will come to them from Bethlehem, a ruler whose “origin is from antiquity, from eternity.”
Fast forward 800 years later, and we see the fulfillment of that prophesy in Luke. Mary and Joseph came to Bethlehem where Jesus, the “ruler” spoken of in Micah 5:2, was to be born. The amazing thing was the circumstances that led Joseph and Mary back to Bethlehem in the first place. They were living in a different town called Nazareth at the time, but God so ordained things that when the time came, in order to fulfill His word that first Christmas, God put it in the heart of Caesar Augustus that all the Roman world should be counted, each in his own town. God was directing the events so that His prediction would be true.
What an amazing truth for us to claim today! It’s further proof of God’s sovereignty and control of life’s circumstances. He perfectly works all things together for His purposes and plan. If God makes a promise, you can be sure He will see that it is fulfilled.
Build Your Own Nativity: Jesus was born in the same place that people kept their animals. It’s hard for us to imagine what that would have been like. As you draw or set up your stable, talk about what it means that Jesus was born in such a humble way.