Nativity

Bible Referenced: New Revised Standard Version Updated Edition

In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth and laid him in a manger because there was no place in the guest room.[a].2.7 Or their room

Note: There is nowhere that indicates that Jesus was born in a barn, surrounded by barnyard animals when you read the passage in Greek from the closest (oldest) to the original texts.

Now in that same region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for see, I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11 to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah,[b] the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host,[c] praising God and saying,14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”[d] 15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph and the child lying in the manger.

 

 

Bullet Points:

* William James believed that our own beliefs, ideas, and thoughts belong to each one of us, which makes us inaccessible to others. This idea of privatization or impenetrability had resounding effects on our philosophical concept of psychology.

* WAIT! Let me overthink this.

* “Nothing on earth consumes a man more quickly than the passion of resentment.”  -Nietzsche

*  It’s weird being the same age as old people.

* Jordan Peterson – “It isn’t that the Bible is true. It’s that the Bible is the precondition for the manifestation of truth, which makes it way more true than just true,” Peterson continued. “It’s a whole different kind of true. I think this is not only literally the case, but factually. I think it can’t be any other way. It’s the only way we can solve the problem of perception.”

 

It’s a Solid Business Model

Pope Francis

Net Worth: US$16 Million USD

Age: 85 Yrs

Monthly Income: US$32,000

 

Biden Now Reading, “Art of the Deal”

(The Bee) WASHINGTON, D.C. — In response to negative backlash over a poorly negotiated prison exchange with Russia, President Biden has begun reading The Art of the Deal by Donald Trump.

“I vow to do better, Jack!” Biden told the family of Paul Whelan, a former U.S. Marine who is still stuck in a Russian prison. “That’s why I picked up this great book from the library.”

“I mean look at this guy. He looks like he makes deals every day!” said Biden, holding the book up proudly. “I promise you I’m going to be just like him. A real go-getter!”

Whelan’s family initially expressed disappointment when American authorities first traded notorious Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, also known as “The Merchant of Death,” for WNBA athlete Brittney Griner, but are now hopeful that a deal can be made. “If anyone can bring Paul home it’s Donald Trump,” said Paul’s twin brother David.

Biden has committed to finishing the book before reopening negotiations with the Russian government, say officials close to the president. The president is reportedly staying up as late as 6 PM to squeeze in some reading time.

“I’m going to be the master of the art of the deal, Jack!” Biden told CBS’ Margaret Brennan. “No one will want to play Monopoly with me after I’m done with this book! Not a joke.”

According to sources, Biden has been honing his new skills by trading Pokémon cards with kids outside the White House. “I traded a Flareon holo card for three Magikarps,” Biden confirmed. “I’m doing it! I’m making deals!”

At publishing time, Biden was hopeful that Putin would accept some Pokémon cards in exchange for Paul Whelan.

 

 

A Twitter Employee looks for work.

41 COMMENTS

    • You and I have discussed this before if you recall. I think that you would in all seriousness. However, there are caveats. I think you would in the honest sense of the term rather than in the exploitative nature of many situations that I’ll mention below.

      For those of you who don’t know Jules, she is a wonderful lady.

      In the case of religious multimillionaires and billionaires (oligarchs of the faith), it’s a business. Very frequently it is political. My Buddhist friend who runs a small shrine says, “big temple, big dragon.” There is a human tendency toward that sort of operation. TV contracts, executive jets, real estate empires, and golden mansions with fleets of expensive cars characterize those operations. My sense is that a lot of those – and maybe all of them lean toward, abominations more than churches.

      When I write this, I’m not throwing rocks at people’s faith. You (Jules) understand that I am a man of faith. You understand this possibly more than anyone else who reads this blog. While I discuss faith in Jesus Christ on this blog, I avoid more detailed discussions usually.

      A lot of churches become social organizations or “party churches” where people gather among like-minded folks who have ‘preferred sins in common’ that are overlooked. (i.e. The Church of Scotland is known as a church for homosexual people). Many church organizations are historically refuges for pedophiles within the ranks of their professional clergy.

      I could go further, but I won’t. Suffice it to say, that I think that you would or could be of great service to mankind.

      • “big temple, big dragon.”

        That sums it up nicely.

        As for Jules, when ‘called” we get the choice to engage or not. Sex aside (ie. man or woman) we can bring to bear our God-given talent and skillset to the masses. Short answer: Yes, but that depends on you. A man or woman of faith doesn’t mean “pushover” or “chump”…Jesus was our example. Being bold is often necessary…and that is sorely missing in the pulpit.

  1. I had a pastor explain it this way, the overcrowded inn would have been loud and nasty, however the stable with the animals all bedded down for the night, would be quiet and private, the more ideal location to give birth. And as far as contacting the Shepard’s, that’s why Christ came, so ordinary people would have a path to everlasting life. What better bodyguards, than the people who protected their flocks from wild animals and thieves!

    • Joseph’s family came from Bethlehem (The City of David), a small suburb of Jerusalem. He had to return home for the purpose of census and taxation at Passover (not in December). He arrives home with his 9-month pregnant fiance in a town where everyone knows him. Would his parents/family/friends send him and Mary to a barn to deliver a baby? Apply Ockham’s Razor.

      • If all relatives of all families from that town had to return for the census, would the guest rooms fill up rather quickly? Those who had the longest distance to travel, and arrive the latest, would find slim pickings for accommodations.
        Wasn’t there to see it myself, so I’m not going to say what happened.
        Read somewhere that, as the region was more known for stone than for forests, in some towns a manger was a stone slab out in the open somewhere – not the enclosed wooden structure that the Johnny-Come-Lately types, who came up with what is now the standard manger scene, were familiar with. If so, talk about humble beginnings 🙂

        • Knowing women and families as I do, and understanding that all the women the family would pitch in to help with the labor and delivery as women do all over the world and have done since day-one, I will tell you that if “I” was in a room and a pregnant woman arrived, MRSLL would boot me out of it to make room for the lady in her situation. Even if strangers arrived at MY door today, MRSLL would boot me out of the best bed in the house to make room for the strangers and for the delivery. People have not changed AT all since then. The fact that it was Joseph’s home makes it all the more likely that the scriptural context cited in the blog above is how it happened.

          • Yes – the wise men and shepherds arrived at a scene involving an already born baby, so we don’t know where the birth took place.
            Tongue-in-cheek question – are you saying MRSLL would ride your ass all the way to Bethlehem? Yeah, I know, old joke….

          • I don’t think it was neccessarily Joseph’s hometown.
            It was where his lineage descended from.
            Grampa was from Kiev. Never been there myself.
            As for the manger?
            it implies animal shelter of some sort. I think it’s almost mandatory for the narrative that Jesus be born in the most humble of circumstances.

          • That’s the key aspect Ed. Ultimately we are curious about details…but in the end it doesn’t really matter where, just how.

      • And at some point, someone who’s known Joseph his whole life says, You’re not married yet, how the hell did she get preggers? And thus the legend of virgin birth.

        • Isaiah prophesied the virgin birth.
          Isaiah 7:4
          “Behold a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel (God with us).
          After a visit from the angel cluing him in to the situation, that prophecy must have been a comfort to Joseph.

          • Being betrothed was ‘as married’, nonetheless it must have been disconcerting. But Joseph was an honorable man, could have “quietly divorced her”, but chose the godly path.

      • Time frame, the Shepard would not have been in the fields that late in the season so that adds Passover to the time line. However it is my understanding that the Roman census was a first time deal. Another factor, was Joseph really known by everyone since his business and lively hood was in Nazareth he might not be well known to his distant relatives. My understanding is that early Christians picked the date we celebrate the birth of Christ to happen when the Romans were having a feast that included drunken orgies. Another thought is that celebrating birth and death in a very short time frame around the spring equinox would have been overwhelming.

  2. Two comments and a thanks for the reminder of the “reason for the season”
    1. My favorite post every year in August when the Climate Cult is proclaiming the end of the world (again/still/always) because it is Hot in Texas, I post the Forecast from High Priest Al Gore about the end of the Ice at the North Pole in 2013, and then I post the current actual Ice Coverage at the North Pole using this site:
    https://weather.ral.ucar.edu/surface/snowNESDISnh.gif

    2. There are definitely Wolves preying on the sheep,
    But there are good shepherds and good flocks out there, it is incumbent on those who seek truth to find them and avoid the Predators…As you say,
    We are given help with this, but too many assume they know what is written rather than bothering to pick up the guide book and study it themselves.
    One big hint for Novices and Pros alike:
    “By their fruits you will know them”
    My local church is Not perfect (our biggest problem is getting more people involved in the ministries) but the reason I chose this one almost 30 yrs ago and keep going is that the staff and all of the people are quite open and inviting to all who enter.
    When I started the average attendance was about 20-40 people and now we average 3-4 hundred. The Pastor has been there longer than I have and he is NOT rich, but enjoys serving the Lord, his Church and his community. We are once again performing the Journey to Bethlehem experience, free to any and all that wish to see it, we had a two year break due to an over abundance of caution for the Wu Flu, this year is my 7th JTB service.

    If you ever get by these parts during December, and since tonight is our last night for JTB this year, probably have to be next year…
    Look us up and experience something unique!

    Merry Christmas to you and your Family and may God Bless your New Year!

    MSG Grumpy

    • x2…well said.

      You touch upon “not rich but enjoys serving…”. THAT is the calling so severely missing when pastors either get in it for the money (scum) or fall into the trappings of accolade (veer off the path).

      • Supposedly, they get rich from their “book sales” or other media work, not their pastorate per se.
        It still doesn’t speak well to be seen in a Maserati.
        I once was a prosperity gospel cult member.
        I had a friend who drove his AMC Matador to Full Gospel Businessmen functions. He was ignored.
        When a friend of ours gave him a his used Cadillac, they invited him to speak.
        Side note. The friend who gave him the Caddy used to sing for Copeland Crusades. Copeland came back from the Philippines disappointed in his results and said he was going to ask Jesus about it. My friend then asked Copeland to ask Jesus about that spending three days in Hell business that Copeland preached.
        That was the end of that relationship.
        Jesus bought our salvation on the cross, not in the grave.

        • Well said Ed. Warren’s Purpose Driven Life deal aside – book sales in this genre are usually light, but yes, Hybels made good money from his books. Cant fault him as I know he was very charitable.

          BTW, Osteen is useless, all feel good. Too bad, the guy can preach the Word, just wrongly. And Furtick is a lunatic. Dare ya to watch one of his sermons. But the hipsters love him. Misled. Charlatans come in all packages, they know what they are doing yet care little what God sees, while preaching their brand of the gospel.

          • +1
            4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.
            11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.

  3. I have heard that in the original ten commandments Hebrew it says thou shalt not murder which if true would ease my soul your friend truckwilkins

    • That is correct, ‘kill’ and ‘murder’ are different words for a reason…intent. Yet the modern adaptation skews God’s Word, confusing His followers. What if you kill someone in self defense, does that damn you to harsh judgement for “breaking the Commandment”? No. God always knows our heart, and by extension, our intent.

    • or accidently – without, of course, intent. however, if accidently, this does not relieve you, in any way, of an onus to that person’s family – what is so humorously called today: reparations!
      OTOH, you may still have to account for your action at the final moment; I don’t know.

  4. Hybels at $45mil…hard to believe, never took a salary after 25 years in at Willow Creek, but did write a lot of of books that are very good for the Christian. His family also had a successful business (that he was supposed to take over), but the number seems a bit overblown as the attacks on him continue after he announced his retirement a five or so years back. Having met him on a number of occasions and chatting, he never did it for the money. MrsPaulM help start Willow and he was his her youth pastor.

    Your point is not lost though, too many love the life and take full advantage of their congregations. As a follower one must be discerning, then go back to Scripture to verify what is being said from the pulpit…we don’t get a free pass for being blindly mislead (Paul to the Corinth Church comes to mind). In the end God will have to sort them out.

    Thanks for covering Christ’s birth spot. I did a number of messages on this over the years, the minds-eye version is more enjoyable with the correct information.

    The “innkeeper” is a modern children’s twist for affect that simply isn’t accurate, the lower portion of Joseph’s relatives house where they kept the animals was likely the spot. As you say above, Joseph was known in his home town, yet arriving later than most for the 5-6 mile journey the upper rooms were already full so other accommodations had to be made. But no, not a barn or stable out in the cold. Despite that, we have our more stable-like Nativity set up for Christmas…still evokes the full sense of the birth and doesn’t detract from the humble beginnings of our Lord. For me it enhances the event.

    • Oops..bad cut and paste…”for the 5-6 days for the 90 mile journey”. Might have been longer 7 or 8 days as there is no mention of a donkey, she likely walked, adding even more import to the story.

  5. It’s often said that there would not be shepherds tending their flocks in December.
    Alfred Edersheim (a believing Jewish scholar) in “Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah” posits that those shepherds were watching the Temple Flock, those chosen for the sacrifices and as such were required to inspect Jesus, the Sacrificial Lamb.

  6. Yep, it’s always about ‘interpretation’ of the words, and who makes the translation(s). If ‘everybody’ came home at once, it could make for interesting stacking of bodies vs. places to sleep. And yes, the manger would have probably been quieter! Regardless, it is the overall context of the birth that is the important part. Re ‘commercial’ religion, pfaugh… not for me.

    And Gore has made a fortune off climate change while doing NOTHING to improve it via his own actions…

  7. Kittinger had “The Right Stuff” in spades. A life well lived. RIP. US Airforce: “We need to conduct some tests to show if a pilot parachuting from the edge of space will survive.” Kittinger: “Let’s do it, I’ve got nothing better to do right now.” Legend.

  8. re: Pastors Net Worth. I happen to have some not made known information about one of the men in the top five of this list. Over the 40 years of his ministry this pastor has given away tens of millions to evangelists, pastors, teachers and missionaries all around the world and has never mentioned it.
    I’ve wondered how some evangelists continue to serve third world countries year after year when those gathered are so poor? Who supports them? Maybe these men.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here