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The Birth of Christ

Retreat 2012 - Preparing our hearts for Christmas - St. Charbel Maronite Church - Harakeh

Samantha Ammoun

on 4 January 2013

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Transcript of The Birth of Christ

The birth of Jesus Christ The Birth of Jesus in the Bible Matthew & Luke Preparation for the coming of Christ The Nativity Story Bethlehem Other Facts about Bethlehem Bethlehem Beit Lahm, Beit Sahur, Bet Lehem, Betar, Beth-Lehem, Beth-lehem-ephratah, Bethlehemjudah, Bit-Lahmi, City of David, Ephratah, Ephrath has now become a religious site to Christians around the world and is visited by thousands every year during the time of Christmas. "How new was the light for the world, how graced was all of heaven..." Where?

The New Testament identifies
Bethlehem as the birthplace of
Jesus of Nazareth. A Palestinian city located in central West Bank, near Jerusalem, with a population of 25 000. The town is inhabited by one of the oldest Christian communities in the world, although the size of the community has shrunk due to emigration. TODAY
Mary and Joseph traveled to Bethlehem from their home town of Nazareth in Northern Israel. They were coming to Bethlehem to be register in a national tax census (Luke 2:1-7) ordered by the Roman emperor, Caesar Augustus.

All citizens had to be registered in their city of origin and Joseph was from the house of David.

Both cities are about 65 miles (105 km) apart. Their journey probably took them several days.

When Joseph and Mary got to Bethlehem, there was no place for them to stay because most inns were already full.

They ended up spending the night in a stable, a place where animals were kept. There was probably fresh hay on the floor that they used for beds.

That night, Jesus was born. There was no crib, so they laid baby Jesus in a manger, a feeding trough for animals. Journey to Bethlehem Small city, small population, mostly farmers. Residents are predominantly Muslim Arabs with approximately 40% Christian Arabs. Residents of Bethlehem hold Palestinian citizenship. In the 14th century BC Bethlehem was a city-state named after the goddess Beit Lahmu. Later it was called Ephrata (Genesis 35:16) and referred to in the Hebrew Bible as Beit Lehem.
Conquered and ruled by:
- Romans (132-135)
- Muslims (c.637)
- Crusaders (1096-1099)
- The Sultan of Egypt (1187)
- The Ottomans (1500′s) who ruled for 400 years.
How did it all happen? Drama film, 2006 The Annunciation to Mary inaugurates "the fullness of time", known as the time of the fulfillment of God's promises and preparations.

Mary was invited to conceive him in whom the "whole fullness of deity" would dwell "bodily".120 The divine response to her question, "How can this be, since I know not man?", was given by the power of the Spirit: "The Holy Spirit will come upon you."121 It all began when Mary said accepted God's will. To become the mother of the Savior, Mary "was enriched by God with gifts appropriate to such a role."132 The angel Gabriel at the moment of the annunciation salutes her as "full of grace". The coming of God's Son to earth is an event of such immensity that God willed to prepare for it over centuries.

He makes everything converge on Christ: all the rituals and sacrifices, figures and symbols. He announces him through the mouths of the prophets who succeeded one another in Israel.

St. John the Baptist is the Lord's immediate precursor or forerunner, sent to prepare his way."Prophet of the Most High", John surpasses all the prophets, of whom he is the last.

When the Church celebrates the liturgy of Advent each year, she makes present this ancient expectancy of the Messiah, for by sharing in the long preparation for the Savior's first coming, the faithful renew their ardent desire for his second coming. The Christmas mystery Jesus was born in a humble stable, into a poor family.
Simple shepherds were the first witnesses to this event.
In this poverty heaven's glory was made manifest.
The Church never tires of singing the glory of this night. the ‘incarnation’, a word that means ‘in the flesh’.

The clear record of the Bible tells us that Jesus is God in human form. Jesus coming in Flesh
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us”(John 1:1-3, 14 ESV, cf. Colossians 1:15-17). HOWEVER.
Jesus existed prior to His incarnation. Matthew 1:18-25 Luke 2:1-20 FOCUS ON THE FULFILLMENT
of the prophecies of the OLD TESTAMENT How is Christmas celebrated now? ADVENT
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