CHRISTMAS SIGN: Luke 2:12
12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”
God tailored the sign given to the recipients of the news. Not for the shepherds the subtlety of a Star in the east, but an angel in their midst. The shepherds received a Savior; the Magi were told of a King. The shepherds’ message was given in a startling fashion so that there would be no misunderstanding of the event that had taken place.
The Magi had been studying the star and plotting to follow it long before.
How fitting they bought gold, so that a carpenter could afford to flee to Egypt.
And frankincense, a kingly scent to overpower the smell of livestock.
And myrrh, a burial spice, prophetic in its symbolism, as was the oil of anointing at Bethany.
Shepherds were not welcome in places such as palaces and temples, so access would be given them by placing the newborn King someplace where they too could see and worship.
But the city of David was the city where the pinnacle of King David’s line was born. The Magi would be welcome there, and treated as the royalty they were. And when they arrived under the guidance of the star they worshiped Jesus, not his parents.
Of the thousands of babies born that night to swell the ranks of the census, this one was in a special place, a place where typically no human baby would ever be placed, a container to feed cattle and sheep.
A synonym for manger is “crib.”
Later He would come to say, ‘He who eats my body…’
The signs that point the way to Him are still being revealed to those who would walk the path to see and worship, and those who would look for the signs G-d has promised He would set in the heavens.
May the knowledge that your King is accessible to you, and that you may partake of Him, bring you comfort and joy.