For Unto Us a Child is Born

“Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord, “That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth, in His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.”

Jeremiah 23:5-6

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. One of the things that my family has made tradition over the past few years has been to watch The Nativity Story on Christmas Eve. The story of Jesus’ birth is beautiful and it reminds us and keeps our focus on what Christmas is all about.

The Nativity Story is the first depiction of Christ’s birth that I’ve ever seen on TV and it was very well done. The script was taken from different books in the New Testament that told of Jesus’s birth. It told the story of Mary and Joseph. Not only did this movie cover the birth of Christ, it also told of the birth of John, Elizabeth and Zacharias’s son, the one who would go before Christ and prepare the way for His coming.

Mary lives in the little village called Nazareth and she is contented with her poor family and insignificance. However, Joseph has his eye on her and when he asks for her to become his wife, Mary’s father sees it as an opportunity to secure Mary’s future. Therefore a betrothal takes place rather suddenly, taking Mary completely by surprise.

In the film, Mary seems less then pleased that she’s been betrothed against her will. But as the film goes on she seems to accept it, especially when the angel Gabriel visits her. Mary is told by Gabriel that she will conceive a son and call his name Jesus, that the baby will be the Son of God. As you can imagine Mary would be very surprised by such tidings as these, but she trusts God and tells the angel to let it be done to her according to his word.

But the law says that she must remain pure for a year before going into her husband’s house. How will she explain her pregnancy? Mary seeks out the advice of her cousin, Elizabeth, who was spoken of by the angel as also being pregnant with a son, which seems impossible since Elizabeth was barren.

The first sentimental scene in the movie is when Mary greets Elizabeth and baby John leaps in Elizabeth’s womb for joy because the mother of his Lord had approached. Mary’s joy turns back to worry however when she speaks to Elizabeth about the baby she now carries and what her family and Joseph are going to think of all of this.

After the birth of John, Mary decides that it’s time for her to return home. There’s no hiding her pregnancy now and when she returns to Nazareth, Joseph and her parents notice right away, as does everyone else. Joseph decides that he will divorce Mary quietly, letting her and her child keep their lives. But then, Gabriel comes to Joseph in a dream and tells him not to be afraid, that the baby Mary carries is the Son of God.

The Nativity Story did a thorough job of the entire story from the Bible. Mary and Joseph’s journey from Nazareth, through Jerusalem and to Bethlehem where Christ was born in the stable was beautifully done. The shepherd’s hearing the news of Christ’s birth, the three wise men coming from so far away, following the star to the stable where Jesus lay in a manger.

To see this movie was such a wonderful thing. The fact that they kept the facts was wonderful. The one thing that some might find wrong with the story was Mary’s attitude about the betrothal in the beginning. She didn’t like that she was given away so easily to a man she didn’t love. Some might find that to be quite unusual of Mary and not at all something she would do or think. I suppose that they were trying to show that Mary too was a sinful human being. But it didn’t strike me as the type of personality traits that Mary might have had.

Other than that, it told the story of Christ’s birth as it is told in the Bible. The Nativity Story is my most favorite movie to watch at this time of year. To be reminded in such a vivid way of Christ’s birth and that He is what our focus should be at this festive time of year has always been such a beautiful thing for me.

This is the ultimate Christmas movie. This is the ultimate Christmas story. Remember at this time of year that Christ humbled Himself, came into this world a baby and was born in a stable. Remember also, why He did this. Remember why He came. He came to be our Savior. He came to be your Savior. This should be our focus at this time of year. The birth of our Savior.

Coming Soon: The accident that put her behind bars those many years ago has haunted her long enough…but when she’s given a second chance, will she be able to do better? Look for my review of Breaking Free, by Lauraine Snelling, soon!!

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