Thursday, 8 December 2011

Keep the Manger!

Away instead with Western notions of a 'commercial' inn, a stable, a late-night arrival by Mary & Joseph followed by an immediate birth and a need or desire for privacy! 

Instead, let's allow the Bible to tell us what actually happened! 

Luke 2:4-7: 
So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.
While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,  and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.
Kenneth Bailey has written an article that is really helpful. It is here and the heart of it is here:
Joseph and Mary arrive in Bethlehem. They find shelter with a family whose separate guest room is full, and are accommodated among the family in acceptable village style. The birth takes place there on the raised terrace of the family home, and the baby is laid in a manger.

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