Our Trip to Israel: Bethlehem

Source: Holman Bible Atlas

It was prophesied in the Old Testament that Jesus would be born here.

Micah 5:2 “But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days.”

The fact that Jesus was born in this city is something that we remind ourselves about every Christmas.

Luke 2:1–7 “In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.”

But this isn’t a “little town of Bethlehem” and it certainly isn’t quiet. This Muslim town, located in the region of the West Bank, is busy! Tourism is a booming business.

As far as the particular sites where the shepherds received the message from the angels and Mary gave birth, I was a little disappointed. I loved being in the general location where it happened but I had a growing frustration with the Catholic Church, the Greek Orthodox Church, and the Armenian Church for declaring where events like this happened when there is very little evidence to back up their claims.

This is where they say the shepherds heard the angelic declaration and chorus:

Then we went to the place where the cave was in which Mary gave birth. I wasn’t convinced. Essentially, it was a room below the “church.”

The church declared this is where Mary gave birth. Like I said, I’m not convinced.

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I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

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