Jesus Was Born During The Reign Of Which Roman Emperor

Census of Quirinius – Wikipedia

While this is, in our opinion, the most plausible scenario, it should be noted that many people think Jesus was executed in the year AD 30, rather than the year AD 33, as we have suggested. Assuming, as some have, that the beginning of Tiberius’ rule occurred in the year AD 14, it becomes extremely hard to fit fifteen years of the Tiberian dynasty and three years of Jesus’ mission between AD 14 and AD 30. Consequently, during the last few years of Augustus’ reign, some have speculated about a co-regency (shared rule) between Tiberius and Augustus.

Our conclusion is that Jesus was most likely killed on April 3, AD 33, according to historical evidence.

As we celebrate Easter, and as we walk with Jesus every day of the year, we may be certain that our faith is founded not just on subjective personal confidence, but also on verifiable historical facts, which demonstrates that our faith is an eminently rational conviction.

Co-authored with Andreas Köstenberger, the book The Final Days of Jesus: The Most Important Week of the Most Important Person Who Ever Lived explores the final days of Jesus, the most important person who ever lived (Crossway, 2014).

The census of Quirinius and the birth of Jesus

Herod I, who reigned in Judea from c.72 to 4 BCE, was a Roman client monarch. His kingdom was divided into three halves after his death, each piece being administered by one of his sons. In 6 CE, the Roman Empire ousted Herod Archelaus, who ruled the biggest section, and his area was transformed into the Roman province of Judea, which is still in use today. To prepare for taxation reasons, Publius Sulpicius Quirinius, the Legate (governor) of the province of Roman Syria, was tasked with conducting a census of the new province.

When the events surrounding Jesus’ birth took place, according to the Gospel of Luke, they took place “in the days of King Herod of Judea” (Luke 1:5), and the birth itself was timed to coincide with the census: An imperial decree was issued by Emperor Augustus ordering that all of the world’s population should be recorded.

All of them traveled to their respective locations to be registered.

He went to Mary’s house to get registered with her since he was engaged to her and she was expecting a kid.

Among other reasons, Luke required the census in order to relocate Joseph and Mary from Nazareth, “their own city,” to Bethlehem, where the birth of Jesus was to take place (Matthew had the opposite problem: he believed that Jesus’s parents already lived in Bethlehem and so required a reason for them to move to Nazareth).

However, some conservative Christians have argued that Quirinius served two terms as governor of Syria and conducted two censuses in Judea.

Regardless, there was no single census of the entire empire under Augustus, the Romans did not directly tax client kingdoms, no Roman census required people to travel from their own homes to those of distant ancestors, a census of Judea would not have affected Joseph and his family, who lived in Galilee under a different ruler, and the revolt of Judas of Galilee suggests that direct taxation by Rome was a new concept at the time of Christ.

The arguments used to try to reconcile Luke’s account of the census have been referred to as “exegetical acrobatics” by Géza Vermes, and they are predicated on the idea that the Bible is inerrant in its content.

See also

  • His reign as king of Judea lasted from 72 to 4 BCE, and he was a Roman vassal. The Roman Empire removed Herod Archelaus in 6 CE, and his realm was transformed into the Roman province of Judea. After his death, his kingdom was split into three halves, each controlled by one of his sons, and each portion was ruled by one of his sons. For taxation purposes, Legate (governor) Publius Sulpicius Quirinius was tasked with carrying out a census of the new province in order to determine its population. It was a property tax, and it required that the value of real property, as well as the identities of the owners, be recorded.) It is believed that the census sparked a revolt of Jewish extremists (known as Zealots) led by Judas of Galilee, who objected to the census because it ran counter to a Biblical injunction (the traditional Jewish reading of Exodus 30:12) and because it would result in taxes being paid in heathen coins bearing an image of the emperor, among other reasons. “The days of King Herod of Judea” (Luke 1:5), the events surrounding Jesus’ birth are placed in the context of a census, according to the Gospel of Luke, and the birth of Jesus itself is associated with a census: A proclamation from Emperor Augustus mandated that everyone on the planet be registered during those days. When Quirinius was governor of Syria, this was the first time anybody had ever registered their name there. To be officially registered, they all proceeded into their respective towns. Because he was descended from the house and family of David, Joseph traveled from the village of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David known as Bethlehem. He went to Mary’s house to get registered, as he was engaged to her and she was expecting a kid at the time. According to Luke’s gospel, King Herod died in 4 BCE, and the census took place in 6 CE, which is contradictory with historical evidence, and the majority of critical scholars agree that Luke is erroneous. Among other reasons, Luke required the census in order to relocate Joseph and Mary from Nazareth, “their own city,” to Bethlehem, where the birth was to take place (Matthew had the opposite problem: he believed that Jesus’s parents already lived in Bethlehem and so required a reason for them to move to Nazareth). Luke may also have desired to contrast the rebellious Zealots with the peaceable Joseph and Mary, who had obeyed the Roman edict (in the Greek orSeptuagintversion, it is “princes” who will be born). However, some conservative Christians have argued that Quirinius served two terms as governor of Syria and conducted two censuses in Judea
  • However, the career of Quirinius, along with the names and dates of the governors, is well documented, and there is no time before 6 CE when he could have served as governor of Syria. Regardless, there was no single census of the entire empire under Augustus, the Romans did not directly tax client kingdoms, no Roman census required people to travel from their own homes to those of distant ancestors, a census of Judea would not have affected Joseph and his family, who lived in Galilee under a different ruler, and the revolt of Judas of Galilee suggests that direct taxation by Rome was a new concept at the time of Jesus. In the words of Géza Vermes, the arguments used to try to reconcile Luke’s account of the census are “exegetical acrobatics,” and they are predicated on the belief that the Bible is inerrant.

References

  1. AbcBrown 1978, p. 17
  2. AbcNovak 2001, p. 290
  3. AbcBrown 1977, pp. 552–553
  4. AbcBrown 1978, p. 19
  5. AbcBrown 1978, p. 17
  6. AbcBrown 1978,

Bibliography

  • AbcBrown 1978, p. 17
  • AbcNovak 2001, p. 290
  • AbcBrown 1977, p. 552–553
  • AbcBrown 1978, p. 19
  • AbcBrown 1978, p. 17
  • AbcBrown 1978,

External links

  • Wikimedia Commons has media related toCensus of Quirinius
  • You may find more information at Wikipedia.

Who Were the Caesars Mentioned in the Four Gospels?

The name Caesar appears many times throughout the life of Jesus, according to the gospels. Caesar Augustus is referenced at the time of Christ’s birth, while Tiberius Caesar is cited at the time of Christ’s commencement of His public ministry. 1. Caesar Augustus was the first emperor of Rome. Caesar Augustus, the first Roman Emperor, was a key role in the New Testament, and he was also an important one in the Old Testament. Augustus reigned from 27 B.C. to A.D. 14 and was the first Roman Emperor.

  1. He was Julius Caesar’s great-great-grandnephew.
  2. He flatly refused to be addressed as rexordictator.
  3. This name implied that he was to be revered beyond all other mortals, which was incorrect.
  4. When Jesus was born, Augustus was the ruler of Rome.
  5. In those days, Caesar Augustus issued a decree ordering a census of the entire world’s population, which was carried out over the entire globe (Luke 2:1).
  6. Prophecy from the Bible has come to pass.
  7. Because of his decision, he set in motion a series of events that culminated in the birth of the Messiah in the prophesied city of Bethlehem, some fifteen hundred miles away from the Holy Land.

It would have taken them four or five days to travel the eighty miles between them.

Joseph also traveled up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is known as Bethlehem because he was descended from the house and family of David, in order to register with Mary, who was betrothed to him and expecting a child at the time of the census.

If it hadn’t been for this edict, they would not have been compelled to leave their homeland of Nazareth in order to give birth to their child.

As a result, they were required to go to the city of David – Bethlehem in order to register.

The fulfillment of the prophesy about the city of the Messiah’s birth occurred as a result of the journey to Bethlehem.

But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, a town that is too little to be counted among the clans of Judah, one will be chosen from among you to be my king in Israel.

(Micah 5:2) This is a completely accurate account.

But the discovery in Egypt of a Roman census decree from A.D.

The irony is that Caesar Augustus, for whom Deity was claimed, unknowingly fulfilled the prophecy of Scripture about the birthplace of the real God, who took on the form of a human person in the first century AD.

Tiberius was the other Caesar that was mentioned.

The word of God came to John, the son of Zacharias, in the wilderness during the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar’s reign, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip was tetrarch of the region of Iturea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias was tetrarch of Abilene in the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas (Luke 3:1, 2).

  1. This is the only time Tiberius is mentioned by name in any of the four gospels.
  2. The Question of Poll Taxation Asked of Jesus There was also the issue of the poll-tax to consider.
  3. Jesus responded in the affirmative.
  4. It bears the likeness and inscription of a particular person.
  5. Afterward, Jesus instructed them to “give unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s” (Luke 20:24, 25).
  6. Then they all rose to their feet and marched him into the presence of Pilate.
  7. Jesus Was Accused of Resisting Caesar’s Authority The charge against Jesus was that he was in opposition to Caesar.
  8. Anyone claiming to be a king is in direct opposition to Caesar ” (John 19:12).
  9. Caesar Augustus, the first Roman Emperor, issued an edict requiring a census to be taken of everyone living in the empire, which was carried out.
  10. It was at Bethlehem that their son Jesus was born, thereby fulfilling the prophecy of Micah the prophet concerning the birthplace of the Messiah.

Tiberius Caesar is solely referenced in order to identify the period in history during which the message of God was delivered to John the Baptist. On two additional times, he is referred to just by his title “Caesar” and not by his given name.

The Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ

OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST’S NATIVITY IN THE WORLD The 25th of December from The Golden Legend1 There is some controversy concerning the exact day on which Our Lord Jesus Christ was born in the flesh of the Virgin Mary. Various sources claim that it happened 5228 years after Adam’s birth, while others claim that it occurred 6oo years after Adam’s birth. In his Chronicle, Eusebius of Caesarea records a total of just 5199 years. Methodius was the first to estimate the age of the universe to be 6000 years; however, he did it by mystical inspiration rather than through chronological calculation.

  • And at the same time that the Son of God was born in the flesh, the globe was unified under the tranquil authority of a single Roman emperor, resulting in a period of universal peace across the planet.
  • Therefore, he decreed that all males of his Empire should return to the town or hamlet of their birth and pay a silver penny to the governor of the province in which they were born, as a symbol of their subordination to the Roman Empire.
  • And when the time for Mary’s delivery approached, and Joseph was unsure of when he would be able to return, he decided to bring her with him to Bethlehem, not wanting to place the treasure in the hands of strangers with which God had entrusted him.
  • “Those who exult are the heathen people who, via Abraham’s offspring, are going to be allowed into eternal pleasure,” the angel revealed to her.
  • When Joseph and Mary arrived in Bethlehem, they were welcomed.
  • According to the Scbolastic History, this structure was situated between two homes and functioned as a gathering area for the residents of Bethlehem, as well as a refuge from the unpredictable weather conditions.
  • And it was there, at twelve o’clock on Saturday night, the eve of Sunday, that the Virgin gave birth to her Son and lay the cherished Child in a manger on some hay.
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In this aspect, it’s important to remember that everything about Christ’s birth was miraculous.

We have five witnesses who can attest to the fact that she was a virgin.

The third factor is Joseph’s care, because he kept a close eye on her and she remained pure as a result.

When Zebel realized that Mary was a virgin, she exclaimed, ‘Truly, she is a virgin, and she has given birth!’ Zebel was astonished.

Then an angel arrived and instructed her to touch the infant, and she was instantly cured of her illness.

During the twelve years that the world had been at peace, a temple of Peace had been erected in Rome, in which a statue of Romulus had been put.

The statue and temple would remain in place until the day when a virgin gave birth to a child.

However, on the night of Our Lord’s birth, this temple was destroyed, and the church of Santa Maria Nuova now stands on the location where it once stood.

According to our knowledge, it was disclosed to every class of creature, from the stones, which are at the bottom of the scale of creation, to the angels, who are at the top of the scale.

The fact that it was made known to the stones of a temple in Rome, as demonstrated by the example just given, is not new information.

While in Rome, the water from a spring transformed into oil and poured down to the Tiber, the Sibyl had predicted that the Saviour of the world would be born when a fountain of oil started to flow.

And he informed the Magi that they were to travel to Jerusalem, where they would be able to discover a newborn infant.

Finally, here is what Pope Innocent III tells us: the Senate desired to bestow the honors of a deity upon Octavian as a prize for his efforts in bringing about peace across the globe.

At high noon on Christmas Day, Sibyl was alone in the palace with the emperor when she noticed a golden ring encircling the sun, which she immediately recognized as a ring of light.

“This lady is the Altar of Heaven,” Caesar exclaimed as the Sibyl showed him the miracle.

As a result, the chamber where the miracle took place was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, and the church of Santa Maria in Ara Coeli is now located on the site of the event.

It is said that as Augustus reached the Capitol, he implored the gods to reveal to him who would succeed him.

When this happened, Augustus constructed the altar, behind which he inscribed: “This is a temple dedicated to Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God.” The Nativity was revealed to the creatures who held being and vitality, such as plants and trees, via the miracle of the Nativity.

The Nativity was revealed to those creatures who were endowed with being, life, and sense, i.e., to the animals, when they were born.

The ox and ass, having miraculously recognized the Lord, bowed their heads before Him and praised Him.

Shepherds were observing the night through near their flocks at the exact time that it occurred, something they did twice a year because it was the custom of the ancient peoples to awake through the nights of the solstices – that is, the longest and shortest nights of the year – to see the sun rise and set.

And they were greeted by a swarm of angels who sang, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men of good will!’ Another method in which the Nativity was revealed was through the Sodomites, who, as a result of their sin, died all across the world.

God could not assume flesh in the nature of man, according to Saint Augustine, since there was an unnatural vice present in that nature at the time of God’s incarnation.

In order to properly understand the Incarnation of Our Lord, we must first define the various reasons for which it was accomplished.

When Saint Hugh, the Abbot of Cluny, looked up on the eve of Christmas, he saw the Blessed Virgin holding her Son in her arms, and she said to him, ‘Behold the day when the prophetic prophecies will be fulfilled!’ ‘Where has the Enemy gone who has been victorious against mankind up until this point?’ The Devil appeared from the depths of the ground in response to Our Lady’s words, attempting to disprove them.

His wrongdoing, on the other hand, was in vain.

Peter of Cluny claims that the Child appeared to Saint Hugh in a vision and said to His mother, ‘Where is the power of the Devil?’ ‘I am unable to enter the chapel, where they are singing Thy praises-, but the chapter, the dormitory, and the refectory are all still open to me!’ said the Devil, emerging from beneath the earth’s surface.

  • In the following year, the Nativity took place, allowing men to be forgiven of their sins.
  • And because she considered herself unworthy of invoking Christ glorious or Christ in His Passion, she reasoned that children would be easier to appease: as a result, she invoked the Child Christ, and a voice informed her that she had been pardoned.
  • ‘Humankind suffers from a triple malady,’ says Saint Bernard, referring to the diseases of birth, life, and death.
  • Christ, on the other hand, came to fight against this threefold evil.
  • It was His birth that cleansed us, it was His life that corrected us, and it was His death that destroyed us.’ Finally, the Nativity came to pass, causing us to be humbled by God’s grace.

Maps, Archaeology & Sources – Chronology

44 BCE Julius Caesar deified by the Roman Senate
27 BCE -14 CE Reign of Emperor Augustus.Augustus was the first Roman ruler to be worshiped as a son of a god (divi filius), and the day of his birth was considered the beginning of his glad tidings or “gospel” for the world.
4 BCE Death ofHerod the Great, ruler of Judea, Samaria, Galilee, and surrounding territories.King Herod had been the loyal client of the Roman emperor Augustus.
4 BCE Jesusof Nazareth is born.
6 CE Territories of Judea, Samaria, and Idumea come under direct imperial control as theRoman province of Judea.
14 CE Augustus deified by the Roman Senate.
26-30 CE Ministry ofJohn the Baptist
30 CE Death of Jesus
30 CE and later Jesus’ early followersfrom Galilee settle in Jerusalem.They are known as “the Twelve.”
35-36 CE Saul of Tarsus, a Jew, comes to believe in Jesus as the Messiah and subsequently becomes the apostlePaul.
37-100 CE Life ofJosephus, the Jewish historian
48 CE Council of Jerusalem, the leaders of the new Christian movement, discuss the terms of the recent mission to the Gentiles.
50 CE Paul leaves Antioch and beginsAegean Mission.His letters to these congregations are the earliest documents now contained in the New Testament.
50-52 CE Paul’s first visit toCorinth; he writes his firstletter to the Thessalonians.
52 CE Paul arrives inEphesus; he writes aletter to the Galatiansand hisletter to the Corinthians.
54-55 CE Paul’s imprisonment in Ephesus.He writes letters to the Philippians and to Philemon; he completes a second letter to the Corinthians.
55-56 CE Paul writes a letter to the Christians in Rome in preparation for his future visit there.
58-60 CE Paul’s imprisonment in Rome
60-65 CE Death of Paul
60-68 CE Death of PeterDeath of James, brother of Jesus and head of the church in Jerusalem
64 CE Great Fire in Rome; Nero blames and executes Christians
66-70 CE First Jewish Revoltagainst Rome.A feud between Jewish and Greek factions in the city of Ceasarea leads to fighting that quickly spreads throughout the region.
68 CE Rabbi Yohanan ben Zakki seeks and receives permission from the Roman general and future emperor Vespasian to establish a new religious school after the war in the Palestinian coastal city of Jamnia.This sets the stage for the emergence of modern Judaism.
68 CE The emperor Nero’s assassination launches a year of civil war in Rome.
69-79 CE Reign of the emperor Vespasian.
70 CE Fall of Jerusalem under military leadership of Vespasian’s son, Titus.
70-100 CE Gospelsof Mark, Matthew, and Luke (Luke-Acts) written.
77 CE Josephus publishesThe War of the Jews
79-81 CE Reign of the emperor Domitian (Vespasian’s elder son and the general who burned the Temple and quelled the Jewish Revolt).
81-96 CE Reign of the emperor Domitian (Vespasian’s younger son and the object of the anti-Roman attack in the Book of Revelation).
85 CE “Curse against Heretics” (Birkath ha-minim) added to Jewish synagogue benedictions, with the intent of excluding Christians.
90-110 CE Gospel of Johnwritten
90-150 CE Gospel of Thomasand othergnosticmanuscripts written
94 CE Josephus publishesThe Antiquities of the Jews
96-98 CE Reign of the emperor Nerva
98-117 CE Reign of Emperor Trajan
100-165 CE Life ofJustin Martyr, early Christian apologist.Justin defends Christianity as a “philosophy” worthy of the respect of the educated and as the only legitimate heir to the Israelite scriptures.
107-117 CE Ignatius, bishop of Antioch, is martyred
112-113 CE Pliny,the Roman governor of Pontus-Bithynia writes to the emperor Trajan seeking advice regarding the punishment of Christians.The emperor tells Pliny that persecuting people on unproven charges is “contrary to the spirit of our times.”
117-138 CE Reign of emperor Hadrian
132-135 CE Second Jewish Revoltagainst Rome (Bar Kochba Revolt).By this time Christians have separated from Judaism.
150-215 CE Life of Clement of Alexandria, early Christian teacher and theologian.Clement’s theology is known for its skillful blend of Christian proclamation with Greek philosophical precepts.
150-222 CE Life of Tertullian, early Christian apologist.Prolific writer and sharp witted defender of the ermerging Christian orthodoxy, until he converted to Montanism late in his life.
155 CE Martyrdom ofPolycarp, bishop of Smyrna and younger colleague and admirer of Ignatius of Antioch.
178 CE Celsus writesTrue Reason , argument against Christianity
180 CE Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons, asserts that the proper number of gospels is four.
185-254 CE Life of Origen.One of the great early Christian scholars and teachers, his writings had a profound effect on the development of Christian theology, particularly in the provinces of the Greek East.
203 CE Martyrdom ofPerpetuain Carthage
249-251 CE First major persecution of Christians under emperor Decius
250 CE Origen publishesContra Celsum , in response to Celsus’True Reason .
257-260 CE Persecution resumes under emperor Valerian
260 CE Persecution ends when Gallienus becomes emperor
260-340 CE Life ofEusebius, Bishop of Caesarea, chronicler of early church and court historian to Constantine
303 CE Persecution begins under Diocletian
312 CE Battle of Milvian Bridge;Constantineadopts Christ as his patron and defeats his rival Maxentius to become sole ruler of Italy, Africa, and the entire western half of the empire.
313 CE Edict of Milan.An agreement between Constantine, ruler of the West and Licinius, ruler of the East, that assured full restitution of all confiscated Christian property and full rights for Christian worship in both halves of the Roman empire.
324 CE Constantine defeats Licinius in a battle near Adrianople.He now becomes ruler of the entire Roman empire.He moves the eastern capital from Nicomedia to Byzantine, henceforth known as Constantinople.
325 CE Council of Nicea attempts to resolve theological differences among church factions.It is agreed that Christ was both fully human and fully divine.
327 CE Death of Constantine.
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The Roman Empire: in the First Century. The Roman Empire. Jesus

Jesus’ brief life and violent death were sufficient to assure that his message of hope and everlasting life would spread throughout Judaea, into the Roman Empire, and ultimately over the entire globe. Judaea, located in one of the most remote regions of the Roman Empire, was a province rich in ancient customs and religious zeal. Years of Roman control had bred increasing hatred among the populace. Descendance into anarchy A family from the hamlet of Nazareth, near the Sea of Galilee, gave birth to Jesus, who was raised by them.

  1. Its populace had become divided into antagonistic factions.
  2. One of these sects accepted Jesus into their ranks when he was thirty years old, and Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River.
  3. Along with many other preachers, he journeyed across Judaea, bringing his message to the homes and synagogues of some of his country’s most impoverished citizens.
  4. That there was a kingdom bigger than Rome, that God would provide, and that the weakest segments of society would find solace and hope in this message were all declared in this message.
  5. Despite the fact that his teaching was becoming increasingly popular, many people were outraged by the assertion made by his disciples that Jesus was the son of God.
  6. Jerusalem is in a state of flux.
  7. There were thousands of pilgrims from all over the world, and the temple provided services for them such as currency exchange and the purchase of animals for sacrifice, among other things.

He argued that such commercial activity polluted the sacred location.

Are you a criminal or a martyr?

Jesus was imprisoned on suspicion of treason and crucified, which was a standard method of punishment for accused criminals at the time.

To the Christians, on the other hand, he was a martyr, and it was immediately apparent that the killing had exacerbated the instability of Judaea.

By murdering Jesus, the Romans had set the stage for the birth of a completely new religion that would soon spread throughout Rome and, eventually, the entire globe.

Where to go from here: Religion in the Ancient Roman Empire Christians in the first century Religion in the Ancient Roman Empire JoesphusJudea – Paul’s Enemies and Rebels

Why Was There a Roman Census at the Time of Jesus’ Birth?

The following passage from Luke 2:1 serves as the customary beginning point for many people when reading the Christmas story each year: “In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.” It is at this point that the earthly narrative of the greatest ruler of all time — a story that does not begin with the man who holds the high title of “Caesar Augustus” — starts.

  • Caesar, on the other hand, was unintentionally aiding in the fulfillment of an old prophesy.
  • It was forced upon her and her betrothed, Joseph, to travel approximately 90 miles in order to be counted for the census of the conquering empire so that it could determine how many people it had available to tax.
  • Why was a Roman census responsible for the fulfillment of prophecy and one of history’s most treasured stories?
  • That’s exactly what we’re here to investigate.

What Is a Census?

A common beginning point for many people when reading the Christmas narrative is Luke 2:1, which states: “During those days, Caesar Augustus issued a decree ordering that a census be taken across the entire Roman world.” It is at this point that the earthly narrative of the greatest ruler of all time — a story that does not begin with the man who holds the high title of “Caesar Augustus” — starts.

To the contrary, Caesar was knowingly contributing to the fulfillment of an old prophesy. To be sure, it’s unlikely that anybody, especially Mary who was expecting her first child, was glad for the census at the time it was conducted.

She and Joseph were members of a conquered people group, and they were forced to travel in order for the conquering empire to know how many people it had available to tax.

What we’re here to investigate is exactly that.

Who Was Caesar Augustus?

Many people begin their annual reading of the Christmas narrative with Luke 2:1, which states, “In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.” And with that, the earthly tale of the greatest ruler of all time starts — and it is not the story of the guy who holds the high title of “Caesar Augustus.” Instead, Caesar was unintentionally aiding in the fulfillment of an old prophecy.

Of all, no one, certainly not the pregnant Mary, could have been more glad for the census at the moment.

She and Joseph were members of a conquered people group, and they were forced to travel in order for the conquering empire to know exactly how many people it had available to tax.

So, how could a Roman census result in the fulfillment of prophesy and the creation of one of history’s most treasured stories? That is exactly what we are here to investigate.

What Did This Mean for the Jewish People Specifically?

Kings of Israel and Judah had long since passed away, with the last monarch of Judah being blinded and taken away by Babylonian conquerors in 586 B.C. The days of the kings of Israel and Judah were over. Many Jews were exiled to Babylon, where they died as a result of their persecution. Although some of them returned via an order issued by King Cyrus of Persia in 538 B.C., which permitted them to rebuild Jerusalem, Israel would stay under the dominion of Persia for over 2,000 years, eventually being invaded by Rome in 63 B.C.

The Jews had relatively little autonomy, despite the fact that they maintained their religious and cultural practices.

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The Jewish people paid taxes to the Roman government and abided by Roman rules.

As a result, in the instance of the census, the Jews simply followed the instructions of the Roman rulers and local authorities.

Why Did Mary and Joseph Have to Go to Bethlehem?

“Everyone went to their own town to register,” according to Luke 2:3, when it came time for the census (Luke 2:3). As a result, according to Luke, Joseph was had to travel from Nazareth in Galilee to Bethlehem in Judea. According to Luke, Joseph was required to travel to Bethlehem since Bethlehem was the town of David and Joseph belonged to the line of David. In addition to being of David’s genealogy, Mary was also a descendant of David.

How Long Did Mary and Joseph Stay in Bethlehem?

There is no set timetable for the project. For starters, it is unclear how long they remained in Bethlehem prior to the birth of Jesus Christ. However, despite the fact that it makes for compelling drama in Christmas pageants, it seems doubtful that Mary gave birth the night they arrived. Simply stated, “while they were there, it became necessary for the baby to be born” according to Scripture (Luke 2:6). Despite the fact that it goes against Christmas tradition, the truth of the matter is that Mary and Joseph most likely remained with family in Bethlehem over the Christmas season.

  • “She covered him in cloths and placed him in a manger,” the Bible reads (Luke 2:7).
  • According to certain English Bibles, the concept of a fruitless quest for an inn stems from a translation of the Greek word for guest room being rendered as “inn” in some translations.
  • During the first century, it was common practice to bring small animals inside the house during the night.
  • A Jewish lady was required to travel to the temple for purification forty days following the birth of her son, which Luke says that Mary and Joseph did, after which they appear to have returned to Bethlehem, according to the account.
  • Following a dream in which Joseph was told to leave Bethlehem, the family moved to Egypt to avoid persecution.

Herod had learned of the new “king of the Jews” from the three wise men, and he was eager to destroy any danger to his position of power as soon as possible. This effectively brought the family’s time in Bethlehem to a close. You may see an example of a possible timeline here.

Why Is This Significant for Jesus’ Birth?

The birth of Jesus in Bethlehem had been prophesied by the prophets. “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are a little clan among the clans of Judah, out of you will arise for me one who will be king over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times,” says Micah 5:2, “even though you are a small clan among the clans of Judah.” The wise men utilized this prophesy to guide them to the location of Jesus. Even before they assembled with Ruler Herod and the Magi from the east to determine where they may locate “the king of Israel,” the senior priests and legal scholars knew that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.

  • Although He was first identified as being from Nazareth (where His parents were born and raised), other predictions indicated that He was from Egypt (where they fled to avoid Herod’s killings) and that He would be summoned out of Nazareth.
  • An impoverished couple in an isolated province had little significance in the eyes of the huge Roman Empire, its taxing system, and its expansive governmental authority.
  • God worked via the Roman census to fulfill prophecy while also pointing people toward the greatest ruler of all time: Jesus Christ, the King of Kings.
  • Alyssa Roat attended Taylor University, where she majored in literature, theology, and the Bible.
  • Literary Agency, as the PR manager for Mountain Brook Ink, and as a freelance editor for Sherpa Editing Services, among other positions.
  • More information about her may be found here, as well as on social media at @alyssawrote.

The Bible Journey

At the Old Testament, the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem was predicted. Although Bethlehem Ephrathah is a small clan among the clans of Judah, Micah 5:2 declares that “out of you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times,” meaning “out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel.” The wise men used this prophesy to locate Jesus and bring him to them. It was obvious to the chief priests and teachers of the law when they convened with Ruler Herod and the magi from the east to explore where they may locate “the king of the Jews” that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.

  1. Although He was first identified as being from Nazareth (where His parents were born and raised), other predictions indicated that He was from Egypt (where they fled to avoid Herod’s killings) and that He would be summoned out of Egypt.
  2. An impoverished couple in an isolated province had little significance in the eyes of the huge Roman Empire, its taxing system, or its expansive governmental authority.
  3. God worked via the Roman census to fulfill prophecy while also pointing people toward the greatest ruler of all time: Jesus Christ, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
  4. She works as a literary agent for C.Y.L.E.

Her books include Dear Hero, and she has more than 200 bylines in periodicals ranging from The Christian Communicator to Keys for Kids. Visit her website here and follow her on social media at @alyssawrote for more information.

Pontius Pilate

The birth of Jesus in Bethlehem was prophesied by the prophets. “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are tiny among the tribes of Judah, out of you will arise for me one who will be king over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times,” says Micah 5:2, “even though you are small among the clans of Judah.” The wise men were guided to Jesus by this prophesy. Even before they assembled with Ruler Herod and the Magi from the east to investigate where they may locate “the king of Jews,” the leading priests and legal scholars understood that the Messiah would come from Bethlehem.

  1. Although He was originally from Nazareth (where His parents were born and raised), other predictions pointed to Him as being from Egypt (where they fled to avoid Herod’s killings) and predicted that He would be summoned out of Egypt.
  2. An impoverished couple in an isolated province had little significance in the eyes of the enormous Roman Empire, its taxing system, and its sweeping ruling authority.
  3. God used the Roman census to fulfill prophecy and show the way to the greatest ruler of all time, the Messiah, the King of Kings, who would come to govern the world.
  4. She works as a literary agent for C.Y.L.E.
  5. She is the co-author of Dear Hero and has over 200 bylines in magazines ranging from The Christian Communicator to Keys for Kids.

What is Pontius Pilate best known for?

Pontius Pilate, full name Marcus Pontius Pilatus, was a Roman prefect (governor) of Judaea from 26 to 36 CE under the emperor Tiberius who presided over the trial of Jesus and delivered the order for his death. He died after the year 36 CE.

Historical and traditional accounts of the life of Pontius Pilate

Historically speaking, Pilate was a Roman equestrian (knight) belonging to the Samniteclan of the Pontii, according to the traditional version of his life (hence his name Pontius). He was appointed prefect of Judaea as a result of the intervention of Sejanus, a Roman emperor Tiberius’ favorite who was also a friend of the emperor. (An inscription from Caesarea in ancient Palestine attests to the fact that he held the position of prefect.) Despite being protected by Sejanus, Pilate alienated Jews in Roman-occupied Palestine by offending their religious sensibilities, such as when he posted portraits of the emperor around the city and had coins with pagan religious symbols produced.

Following Pilate’s onslaught on them on Mount Gerizim, the Samaritans reported him to Vitellius, the Syrian legate (36ce).

In the following months, he was sent back to Rome to stand trial for cruelty and persecution, notably on the claim that he had killed prisoners without due process of law. Eusebius of Caesarea’s Ecclesiastical History claims that Pilate committed suicide on the command of the emperorCaligula.

Pilate in the New Testament

Decisions about the man himself must be made inferentially, almost completely on the basis of subsequent Jewish and Christian literature, particularly those of Josephus and the New Testament, which are the most reliable sources. Josephus’ allusions appear to be constant throughout his writings. Their depiction seemed to be of a brash strictauthoritarianRoman commander who, although being both sensible and practical, never seemed to know how far he should go in a particular situation. He incited riots among both Jews and Samaritans, according to the Bible.

Josephus expresses his inferential conclusion that Pilate “was strongly moved by their solid resolution,” implying that he had a strong character himself.

Could it be that the crowd would be just as joyful if he freed Barabbas on the feast day instead of Jesus (Mark 15:6 ff.)?

A revelatory dream she has had about Jesus is communicated to him by his wife, who encourages him to “have nothing to do with the innocent man” (Matthew 27:19), and Pilate abdicates his responsibility to the emperor.

While Pilate is pronouncing judgment from a tribunal in front of the prefect’s palace, John’s depiction of Pilate does not conform to standard Roman protocol.

Jesus in the presence of Pilate Jean Fouquet’s illuminated book of hours for Étienne Chevalier, c.

Photograph courtesy of the Hulton Archive/Getty Images Even into the early twenty-first century, some churches continued to hold fast to an early church tradition that had taken a favorable view of Pilate.

His wife and himself are honoured in the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, and their feast day is celebrated on June 25. Those in charge of editing the Encyclopaedia Britannica Michael Ray has made several revisions and updates to this article in the most recent version.

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