Where Was Jesus Born?
What city was the site of Jesus’ birth?The birth of Jesus is often attributed to Bethlehem, a little village a few miles south of Jerusalem.For the sake of specificity, Christ was born in a stable, maybe within a cave.
- Although there is no convincing proof as to the structure of the stable, the vast majority of people who ever think about the Nativity believe that He was born among animals, rather than in a pleasant chamber with a good bed, and that the stable was located in Bethlehem, according to the Bible.
Where Was Jesus Born?
According to BibleInfo.com, this village still exists in the West Bank (a region of Palestine), and it is a location of immense significance to Christians as well as the site of the world’s ″oldest Christian church still in continuous operation.″ The name ″Bethlehem″ literally translates as ″House of Bread,″ but it is also referred to as the ″Town of David″ in the Bible (Luke 2:4).According to the Bethlehem Municipality website, Bethlehem had been a ″essential staging and rest station for travelers from Syria and Palestine on their way to Egypt″ and subsequently ″a strong strategic location″ for the Philistines, and it had been ″a strong strategic point″ for the Philistines.According to Bible Odyssey, despite its tiny size, the area has been significant to loyal Christians, Jews, and Muslims for many years because of its religious significance.
- It is revered as the birthplace of their Savior by Christians, while it is revered as the birthplace of a great prophet by Muslims.
- Because King David was born here, this city is also revered by Jews.
Reasons to Believe Jesus Was Born in Bethlehem
Christians identify Bethlehem with the birth of Jesus because of the following reasons: 1.Prophecy from the Old Testament ″But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, out of you will come one who will be ruler over Israel,″ says Micah 5:2, ″but you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, out of you will come one who will be king over Israel.″ He will stand and shepherd his flock in the power of the Lord, in the majesty of the Lord His God, according to Micah 5:4, which reads, ″He shall stand and shepherd his flock.″ This shepherd would turn out to be none other than the Messiah, Jesus Christ.It was ″either the name of Bethlehem itself or the name of a territory in which Bethlehem was located,″ according to the dictionary.
- When Jesus Christ arrived to earth, he was able to fulfill more than 300 prophesies.
- The Account of the New Testament According to Luke 2, Joseph traveled ″from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the City of David, which is named Bethlehem, to get registered with Mary,″ according to the verse.
- Mary gave birth to a son shortly after landing in Bethlehem.
(Luke 2:6-7) The Bible says: 3.The Interpretation of Old Testament Prophecy by Historical Professionals ″We saw his star as it rose and have come to adore him,″ the Magi, who were on the lookout for the ″king of the Jews,″ informed Herod.(Matthew 2:2; Mark 1:15) ″All of the people’s leading priests and law teachers gathered together,″ Herod was disturbed, and they were tasked with informing him of the location of the missing infant (Matthew 2:4).Because these scholars referenced the prophesy in Micah, Herod sent the Magi to Bethlehem to find the baby Jesus.There is nothing in the passages that chronicle their meeting with Joseph, Mary, and the infant Jesus that would lead one to believe that the Magi had discovered the child somewhere else.
4.The recognition of Bethlehem’s authentic historicity by the United Nations.The first Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, dedicated in 339 A.D., was constructed.
- Some of the structures are still standing below ground.
- According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), ″the sacredness of the place is preserved by the three churches that inhabit it.″ A memorial to Jesus’ birth is marked by the erection of a church above the cave in 533 A.D., which confirms a seventeen hundred year old tradition of believing that this cave was, in fact, the birthplace of Jesus Christ.
- ″The association of the place that was believed to be the birthplace of Jesus is documented as early as the 4th century AD, and from that time on, the buildings that have been added to it have been constructed to enhance this religious significance,″ according to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization.
- This is sufficient justification for the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to formally safeguard the religion.
- Their protection lends credence to the concept that Bethlehem is the location of Jesus Christ’s birth.
Where Was Jesus Born: Church of the Nativity
For so long, Christian history has identified this church, in this town, with the birth of Christ with such certainty that one has to ask why it is still here when there may have been a better candidate….During the time of Jesus, there was something about Bethlehem that had unique significance in the eyes of religious authorities.Certain indications led them to a certain area, which may or may not have been the actual location of his birth, according to the evidence.
- No one alive at the time of the church’s construction in the 4th century could claim to have been alive even at the time of the Apostles, but stories must have been passed down down the generations in the intervening period.
- At the very least, church leaders were confident that they were in the correct town.
- Evidence of Bethlehem’s importance to travelers traveling through this region of the Middle East only adds to the argument for the city’s location as the site of Christ’s birth.
- Certainly, UNESCO and millions of pilgrims are persuaded by archaeological evidence that has survived, while researchers are enthralled by artifacts that have not yet been discovered.
Where Was Jesus Born? Was Jesus Born in Nazareth?
Christians and historians have questioned whether or not the Nativity took place in Nazareth at various times.We do refer to Jesus as ″the Nazarene″ in the Bible (John 18:5-8) and in hymns such as ″I Stand Amazed in the Presence of the Most High,″ after all.Furthermore, Matthew makes reference to prophesy that Nazareth would be the city from which the Messiah would arise.
- However, according to CARM.org, ″there is no clear Old Testament citation that says the Messiah would be known as a Nazarene.″ According to Matthew 2:19-23, Jesus was reared in Nazareth, which is where Joseph and Mary resided before the census and where they returned after a period of time as refugees in Egypt before the census.
- Jesus was well-known at the synagogue of Nazareth, where he was first rejected at the beginning of his career.
- It was reported that they ″brought him to the crest of the hill on which the town was constructed, in order to toss him down the precipice″ as well (Luke 4:29).
- Jesus’ link with Nazareth begins in his early boyhood and continues with his escape from an enraged crowd at the end of his life.
Jesus Christ Is Eternal
In the end, Jesus existed with God prior to the creation of the universe (John 1).He was born as the Son of Man in order to die for the sins of the world (John 3:16-18), but he was never genuinely ″born″ in the traditional sense.He has always been, as a member of the Trinity; he is the Great I AM.
- Despite the fact that we are more easily connected to the tale of a genuine man who was born as a real baby, Christians rely on this power.
- Even though He was blameless throughout his life, we may identify with His human growth from newborn to adulthood.
- However, while Bethlehem is the most plausible location for the birth of our Savior, it is merely the beginning of the most impactful and inspirational life that has ever been lived.
- The Christian emphasis is on Christ’s death and resurrection, and our gaze is set on the cross and another birth: the birth of our trust in the risen King.
Candice Lucey lives in Salmon Arm, British Columbia, Canada, with her husband and two kids in a (usually) quiet setting.When she is not working or participating in missionary activities, she may be found here digging into God’s word.Previous books of her writing and poetry include Purpose and Creation Illustrated, and her short plays have been presented at Christmas by Sunday School kids for a number of consecutive years.Candice’s scriptural studies may be followed on her blog, Wordwell.ca, which she maintains.Continuing Your Education When and where was Jesus’ birth celebrated?
The Nativity Story Teach Us 10 Important Things About God The Christmas Bible Story is as follows: Examine the story of Jesus’ birth in the Bible.Was the Star of Bethlehem important in ancient times and how does it relate to us today?Photograph courtesy of Getty Images/Allanswart
Where was Jesus born?
The events described in Matthew 2:1-2 and Luke 2:1-7 take place when Joseph and Mary leave Nazareth and go to Bethlehem in response to a census imposed by Caesar Augustus. The prophet Micah even foresaw the location of Jesus’ birth hundreds of years before the event really occurred (Micah 5:2).
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The significance of the birth of Jesus Information on the city of Bethlehem
Jesus was born in Bethlehem
- ‘Where is He who has been born King of the Jews?’ asked the wise men from the East when they arrived in Jerusalem following Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem during the reign of Herod the king, according to Matthew 2:1, 2. ″Because we have seen His star in the East and have come to adore Him,″ says the author. Secondly, in Luke 2:4-7, it reads, ″Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is named Bethlehem, because he belonged to the family and lineage of David. As a result, she delivered her firstborn Son, wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and lay Him in a manger since there was no room for them at the inn.″ 3. The Bible states in Micah 5:2, ″But you, Bethlehem, and Ephrathah, though you be but a little town among the multitudes of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting. Maps and links provided by Google: Map of Bethlehem (courtesy of Google Maps)
- map of Joseph and Mary’s journey (if they were to travel it today)
- and a list of resources.
The importance of Jesus’ birth
However, the fact that Jesus was born is far more important than the location of His birth.Jesus came to earth in order to dwell among us and to become one of our own.The angel announced to Mary that she would become the mother of a boy, whose given name would be ″Immanuel,″ which means ″God with us″ (Matthew 1:23).
- Those who believe in Jesus Christ will not perish but will have eternal life, as the apostle John wrote: ″For God so loved the world that He gave His only born Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life″ (John 3:16).
- In the beginning, the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we glimpsed His glory, the glory as if He were the only born of the Father, full of grace and truth (John 1:14).
- What happened in Bethlehem was a miracle in and of itself.
Other Information About Bethlehem
Today, the little town of Bethlehem is located in the limestone hill area of the Holy Land, some six miles south of Jerusalem.It is a popular tourist destination.In the traditional location of Jesus’ birth, stands the Church of the Nativity, the oldest Christian church still in continuous use.
- It is regarded one of the holiest sites in all of Christendom and is the oldest church still in continuous use in the world.
- Every year, around 2 million people come to see the birthplace of Jesus.
- The number of tourists is particularly high during the holiday season.
- There are enormous lines, and hotels and other accommodations are all sold out.
Locals joke that if Joseph and Mary turned up in Bethlehem today, they would find that there would still be no space in the inn for them.Despite its tiny size, Bethlehem has a long and illustrious history in the Bible.It is referred to as ″the city of David″ (Luke 2:4) because it was the birthplace of Israel’s renowned king, King David.The town of Bethlehem is the site of Jacob’s burial of his beloved wife, Rachel, who died during childbirth (Genesis 35:19, 20).Ruth gathered weeds in the fields of Boaz, which is located in Bethlehem (Ruth 1:22; 2:4).
When the prophet Samuel anointed David as king of Israel, it was at Bethlehem that the event took place (1 Samuel 16).
Where was Jesus born?
Answer to the question The birth of Jesus Christ is chronicled in Matthew 1:18–25, Luke 1:26–38, and John 2:1–20, among other places in the Bible.It was during Mary’s pregnancy that an edict from Caesar Augustus was issued stating that ″everyone in the world shall be registered″ (Luke 2:1).In practice, this meant that every individual living in the Roman territory was expected to go to the city of their ancestors in order to be counted in a census.
- Despite the fact that Joseph was living in Nazareth at the time, he was required to journey south to the Judean area, ″to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, since he was of the family and lineage of David,″ according to the Bible (Luke 2:4).
- Naturally, Joseph brought his fiancee, Mary, along with him so that she might be considered as a part of his clan.
- As a result, the young couple found themselves in the little town of Bethlehem around the time of Jesus’ birth.
- According to Micah, who predicted that the Christ would be born in Bethlehem, this location corresponds to the following: ″But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times″ (Micah 5:2).
Bethlehem was bursting at the seams with people because so many people had returned to the little city for the census.There was no room at the inn for Mary and Joseph, so they were compelled to seek sanctuary in the only place that was open at the time—a shelter for animals.It is important to note that, while the Bible does not mention animals being present at the birth of Christ, the Gospel of Luke does claim that the newborn Jesus was put in a manger, and the presence of a manger strongly implies the presence of animals.Traditional interpretations of Luke 2:7 allude to the ″inn″ as being some sort of commercial lodging establishment.In addition, the location where Mary and Joseph sought refuge was a stable somewhere in the neighborhood.
However, we cannot be certain that this was the case because the Greek term for ″inn″ (kataluma) may also be rendered as ″guest chamber,″ thus we cannot be certain.A private residence with visitors, as well as a separate place for the family’s animals, would be our interpretation based on this interpretation.It was not uncommon for the animal enclosure to be positioned on the lower floor of a home, away from where the people resided.
- As a result, when Luke says there is ″no room in the kataluma,″ it is possible that he is referring to the top level of the kataluma, which is already crammed with sleeping visitors or family members.
- Archaeological discoveries have also shown dwellings that were simply divided by a wall between the front of the house and the back, where animals were kept protected from the elements.
- Both of these floor layouts suggest the presence of an indoor animal shelter that is somehow connected to the home.
- It doesn’t matter how you look at it, there was a manger or feeding trough at the location where Christ was born, and it was used as a resting place for the infant Jesus, according to Luke 2:7.
- According to another belief, Jesus was born in a cave in the northern portion of Bethlehem known as Migdol Eder, which is located in the vicinity of the city of Bethlehem.
- Sheepherds utilized this watchtower, which had a shelter beneath it, to protect their newborn lambs during the lambing season, who were eventually sacrificed at the Jerusalem temple.
- Migdol Eder is also mentioned by the prophet Micah, who predicted that Bethlehem would be the birthplace of the Messiah: ″As for you, watchtower of the flock, stronghold of Daughter Zion, the former dominion will be restored to you; kingdom will return to Daughter Jerusalem″ (Micah 4:8).
- A version of this hypothesis explains why, when the heralding angels said that the baby would be ″wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger,″ the shepherds seemed to know precisely where to look and what to do.
- Furthermore, it would be appropriate for the Messiah to be born in the same location where the sacrificial lambs were conceived.
No matter if Jesus’ birth took place in an indoor animal shelter, a separate barn, or a tower used for lambing, the Bible is clear that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was born in a lowly setting in the town of Bethlehem, according to the Bible.Return to the previous page: Questions regarding Jesus Christ What city was the site of Jesus’ birth?
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Where Was Jesus Born?
The birthplace and hometown of Jesus Megan Sauter is a model and actress.46 comments and 109685 views on June 26, 2021 What city was the site of Jesus’ birth?Bethlehem is the location where Jesus was born according to the Bible.
- The Italian artist Giotto painted this picture in the Arena (Scrovegni) Chapel in Padua, depicting Mary, Joseph, and Jesus in the Bethlehem stable.
- It is one of his best-known works.
- All of the wise men, as well as their caravan and angels, had gathered around the young child.
- Haley’s comet is streaking through the sky over the stable, illuminating the scene.
The comet known as Haley’s was discovered in 1301, three years before Giotto painted this image.The Nativity narrative is retold in churches and homes all across the world as the Christmas season approaches each year.Passages from Matthew 1–2 and Luke 1–2, the Gospels’ infancy narratives, are recited and sung at Christmas pageants, and they are even played out in live performances.What city was the site of Jesus’ birth?In the Bible, the answer appears to be straightforward: Bethlehem is the location.
Both Matthew 2 and Luke 2 indicate that Jesus was born in the city of Bethlehem in the Judean region of Israel.However, Biblical scholarship has recently called into question the identification of Bethlehem as Jesus’ birthplace, asking why he is referred to as a Nazorean and a Galilean throughout the New Testament, and why Bethlehem is not mentioned as Jesus’ birthplace outside of the infancy narratives in the Gospels.Some have speculated that Jesus was actually born in Nazareth as a result of this.
- In his Biblical Views column ″Jesus’ Birthplace and Jesus’ Home,″ published in the November/December 2014 edition of BAR, Philip J.
- King explores the topic of where Jesus was born in his Biblical Views column.
- He examines in detail what the Bible says regarding the cities of Bethlehem, generally known as Jesus’ birthplace, and Nazareth, traditionally known as Jesus’ home.
- You might be interested in knowing more about Jesus’ birth.
- More information on the history of Christmas and the date of Jesus’ birth may be found in the free eBook The First Christmas: The Story of Jesus’ Birth in History and Tradition, which can be downloaded here.
- In contrast to Bethlehem in Judea, which was revered in the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament as the birthplace of King David and the birthplace of the future messiah, the small Galilean village of Nazareth was far less well-known, receiving no mention in the Hebrew Bible, the Talmud, or the writings of Josephus, despite its historical significance.
- According to King, ″Nazareth’s significance stems wholly from its connection to the life and teachings of Jesus.″ Clearly, there is a contrast between Bethlehem, which is the birthplace of King David, and Nazareth, which is a modest farming community.
- Despite this, both locations were essential in Jesus’ life.
- So, if Jesus was born in Bethlehem, as the Gospels of Matthew and Luke indicate, why was he referred to as a Nazorean in the first place?
Read the complete essay ″Jesus’ Birthplace and Jesus’ Home″ in the November/December 2014 issue of BAR to find out what Philip J.King believes about the Biblical towns of Bethlehem and Nazareth, as well as further facts about the Biblical towns of Bethlehem and Nazareth.—————— Subscribers: For more information, please see the complete editorial by Philip J.King in the November/December 2014 edition of Biblical Archaeology Review, titled ″Jesus’ Birthplace and Jesus’ Home.″ Are you a new subscriber?
- Become a member today.
- You might be interested in knowing more about Jesus’ birth.
- More information on the history of Christmas and the date of Jesus’ birth may be found in the free eBook The First Christmas: The Story of Jesus’ Birth in History and Tradition, which can be downloaded here.
Related reading in Bible History Daily:
Was Jesus a real person?Lawrence Mykytiuk’s main piece from the January/February 2015 issue of BAR, which includes extensive endnotes, is entitled ″Searching for Evidence Beyond the Bible.″ Andrew McGowan’s complete essay from the December 2002 edition of Bible Review on how December 25 became Christmas may be seen here.Tony Burke’s Christmas Stories from the Christian Apocrypha is available online.
- The Death of Herod, the Birth of Jesus, and a Lunar Eclipse are all happening at the same time.
- Who Was Jesus’ biological father, and how did he come to be?
- What Was the Purpose of the Magi Bringing Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh?
- Has the location of Jesus’ childhood home been discovered?
This piece of Bible History Daily was first published on November 17, 2014, and has been updated.
Which town was jesus born?
What was Jesus home town?
Archaeologists digging in Nazareth, in modern-day Israel, the hometown of Jesus, have discovered a house going back to the first century that was thought to be the location where Jesus was raised by his parents, Mary and Joseph. The home, which was dug into a rocky slope, is partially constructed of mortar-and-stone walls.
Was Jesus born in Bethlehem or Jerusalem?
The village of Bethlehem in Judea, which is located around six miles south of Jerusalem, has long been regarded as the birthplace of Jesus Christ. After Jesus’ birth, according to the New Testament, Joseph and Mary traveled to Nazareth, which is located farther north in the country of Judea, where they remained until their deaths.
When and where was Jesus born?
Background information and early life Jesus was born in Bethlehem about the year 6 B.C. In the beginning, his mother, Mary, was a virgin who was engaged to Joseph, a carpenter at the time of his birth. The Immaculate Conception, according to Christian belief, was the means through which Jesus was born. His ancestors may be traced back to the House of David in Jerusalem.
What country is Jesus from?
What religion did Jesus grow up?
Of course, Jesus was born into a Jewish family. He was born in Galilee, a Jewish region of the globe, to a Jewish mother and a Jewish father. All of his friends, companions, coworkers, and disciples were Jews, and he had no problem with it. He was a regular attendee of Jewish community worship services, which we refer to as synagogues.
What is 777 in the Bible?
According to the Orthodox Study Bible, which is published in the United States, the number 777 reflects the threefold completeness of the Trinity. The number 777, as triple 7, may be compared to the number 666, which is triple 6, which is the Number of the Beast (rather than variant 616).
When did Jesus actually born?
Jesus’ birth date is not specified in the gospels or in any historical source, although most biblical historians believe he was born between 6 and 4 BC, depending on whose year you believe.
Where is Nazareth now?
Nazareth, Israel’s largest Arab city and one of the largest cities in northern Israel, is located in the beautiful Lower Galilee region of the country and is famous for being the city where Jesus had lived and grown up. Today, the city is the largest Arab city in Israel and one of the largest cities in northern Israel.
Does Jesus have a brother?
The brothers and sisters of Jesus James, Joseph/Joses, Judas/Jude, and Simon are all mentioned as brothers of Jesus, the son of Mary, in the Gospel of Mark (6:3) and the Gospel of Matthew (13:55–56), respectively. The same lines also refer to unidentified sisters of Jesus who are mentioned in passing.
What was Jesus’s full name?
Jesus’ given name in Hebrew was ″Yeshua,″ which translates to ″Joshua″ in the English language.
What were houses like in Jesus day?
What were ancient dwellings like, and what did they seem like? Houses in ancient Nazareth were built on a rough stone foundation with mud bricks that were handcrafted on the spot. Because wood was costly, just the bare minimum was employed in the roof framework. It is likely that the dwellings in Nazareth were single-story constructions that were modest and tiny.
When was Adam and Eve born?
They utilized these variances to develop a more reliable molecular clock, which they used to determine that Adam lived between 120,000 and 156,000 years ago, depending on the mutation. Eve lived between 99,000 and 148,000 years ago, according to a comparable examination of the same men’s mitochondrial DNA sequences1.
Why do we celebrate Jesus birth on December 25?
The Roman Christian historian Sextus Julius Africanus assigned the date of Jesus’ conception to March 25 (the same date on which he believed the world was formed), which, following nine months in his mother’s womb, resulted in his birth on December 25, according to the calendar of the time.
How long was Jesus on the cross for death?
Jesus was nailed on the cross around nine o’clock in the morning, and He died at approximately three o’clock in the afternoon. As a result, Jesus was crucified for almost 6 hours. An interesting side note: the Romans of Jesus’ day were very skilled at prolonging the duration of their torture procedures.
Why is 7 the perfect number?
The number seven represents completion and excellence in all aspects of one’s life (both physical and spiritual). It draws much of its significance from the fact that it is linked directly to God’s creation of everything. The term ‘created’ appears seven times in the Bible to describe God’s creative action (Genesis 1:1, 21, 27 three times; 2:3; 2:4).
Is 888 God’s number?
888 is considered to be a representation of Jesus, or more especially Christ the Redeemer, according to certain Christian numerology. This representation may be justified either through gematria, by calculating the letter values of the Greek transcription of Jesus’ name, or as a counter-value to 666, the number of the beast, depending on how you look at things.
What is God’s favorite color?
God’s favorite color is the color blue.
What is the oldest religion?
The term Hindu is an exonym, and while Hinduism has been referred to be the world’s oldest religion, many of its adherents refer to their faith as Santana Dharma (Sanskrit:, lit. ″universal law″).
Was Jesus born in a stable or a house?
Christmas nativity scenes across the world depict the birth of Christ, which may be the most famous Bible tale of all: Jesus was born in a stable because there were no rooms available at the inn when his parents went to give birth to him.
Who is God’s first angel?
Individual angels are first mentioned by name in the Bible, with Daniel 9:21 referring to Gabriel (God’s chief messenger) and Daniel 10:13 referring to Michael (God’s holy fighter). These angels appear in Daniel’s apocalyptic visions and are a significant aspect of all apocalyptic literature, particularly in the Old Testament.
What is Jesus favorite number?
The number seven is God’s personal favorite. What is the evidence? The Holy Bible is the most important book in the world. The number seven appears several times in the Bible (from Genesis to Revelation).
What are the 4 Omnis of God?
Omnipotence, Omniscience, and Omnipresence are all attributes of God.
Where was Jesus born?
King David’s birthplace (see 1 Samuel 17:12, etc.) and the location of the prophet Micah’s prophecy that the Messiah would come were both at Bethlehem, a little hamlet a few miles from Jerusalem where Jesus was born (Micah 5:2).The actual location of his birth, according to historical records, archaeology, and long-standing tradition, is a cave just outside of the town itself, beneath the site of the current Church of the Nativity.
Jesus’ Birth in Bethlehem
The gospels of Matthew and Luke are our major sources for information about Jesus’ birth.Both mention Bethlehem as the location of the incident.″Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea during the reign of Herod the king, magi from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, ‘Where is He who has been born King of the Jews?’″ Matthew says.
- ″For we have seen His star in the east and have come to adore Him,″ says the narrator.
- (Matthew 2:1-2; Luke 2:1-2).
- Furthermore, ″he gathered all of the top priests and scribes of the people under one roof and enquired of them as to where the Messiah was to be born.″ In Bethlehem of Judea, for this is what the prophet has written: ″And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah; You are by no means least among the leaders of Judah; For out of you shall spring out a Ruler Who will shepherd My people Israel,″’ they said to him.
- Matthew 2:4-6 is an example of this.
Some have accused Matthew of fabricating Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem solely for the purpose of having him fulfill this prophecy, but Luke also attests to Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem without making any reference to the prophecy: ″Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth.″ This was the first census done in Syria when Quirinius was serving as governor.In the meantime, everyone was en route to their respective cities in order to register for the census.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.While they were there, the days before she was due to give birth had been completed.And she gave birth to her firstborn son, whom she wrapped in cloths and put in a manger because there was no space for them in the inn,″ the Bible says (Luke 2:1-7).
″When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds started to say to one another, ‘Let us travel directly to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened that the Lord has made known to us,’″ they said.″And again: (See Luke 2:15 for further information.) No one would honestly imply that Matthew and Luke were copying one another’s birth tales, and as a result, we have a large number of independent witnesses who attest to the fact that Jesus was actually born in the town of Bethlehem.
The cave of tradition
Tradition has it that Jesus was born in a cave or grotto just outside of town, a location that was once utilized as a natural stable for animals and is now protected by a church edifice built in commemoration of the historic event.Such historical traditions can be later creations, either as a result of deliberate deception or as a result of an honest error by someone who mistakenly felt they had ″found″ the location of a significant event.″However, when we have a nearly unbroken possession of a location, like as Jerusalem, Bethlehem, or Nazareth, relying on tradition is less difficult,″ according to one historian.
- 1 Digging Through the Bible (Richard A.
- Freund, 1996) (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009) 32 ″Less troublesome″ does not always imply ″foolproof.″ In Jerusalem, for example, you may come across two competing historic sites that both claim to be the place of the same event at the same time.
- Sometimes it was a subsequent Crusader-era ″discovery″ of the place that established a custom that lasted for centuries after the original occurrence.
- For researchers, however, a tradition that is homogeneous in nature and that has been regularly occupied such that local memory of the region has been passed down may be a valuable source of information while pursuing their research objectives.
A place is likely to be trustworthy if the archaeological findings are congruent with the tradition and/or if it is recorded very early in ancient records (particularly records by persons who lived relatively near to the site or who are at the very least known to have traveled there).So, how does the tradition of the Bethlehem cave fare against the test of time?As mentioned in the above paragraph, Bethlehem has been populated quite constantly from the time of Jesus Christ.Additionally, there are no competing sites, thus the tradition merits our attention.What is the history of this concept?
Historical accounts of the Bethlehem cave
Justin Martyr is credited with making the first written reference of the cave custom.″However, when the Child was born at Bethlehem, since Joseph was unable to find lodging in that hamlet, he took up his quarters in a particular cave near the settlement, and while they were there, Mary gave forth the Christ and laid Him in a manger,″ writes Justin in the mid-second century AD (Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho, Chapter 78).Justin, a gentile convert to Christianity who was born in Shechem, was a Christian conversion (modern Nablus), 2 Randall Price, Zondervan Handbook of Biblical Archaeology (Zondervan, 2017), p.
- As the crow flies, the city of Nazareth is approximately 36 miles from Bethlehem.
- Because both cities were part of the same Roman province of Palestine during Justin’s time, this is a better source than one written by someone in, say, Rome or Ephesus who was unfamiliar with the people and culture of the country where Jesus was born.
- When it comes to ancient history, a source that is only 36 miles away and 150 years after the event is a relatively close source.
However, if we wish to be able to confirm this tradition with any degree of accuracy, it would be beneficial to have more early sources to draw on.We, on the other hand, do.The next earliest person we have is Origen of Alexandria.ORIGINS’ life spanned the later part of the second century until the beginning of the third century.Despite the fact that he spent the most of his life in Alexandria, Egypt, Origen journeyed to and eventually settled in the Judean city of Caesarea Maritima.
″With regard to the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, if anyone desires, after the prophecy of Micah and after the history recorded in the Gospels by the disciples of Jesus, to have additional evidence from other sources, let him know that, in accordance with the narrative in the Gospel regarding His birth, the cave where He was born, and the manger in the cave where He was wrapped in swaddling-clothes, are shown at Bethlehem.″ And this sight is widely discussed in the surrounding areas, including among those who are hostile to the Christian religion, with the claim being made that it was in this cave that Jesus, who is venerated and revered by Christians, was born.″ (Against Celsus, Book 1, Chapter 51 of Origen’s Against Celsus) As a result of this discovery, not only is the cave story confirmed, but we also learn that the location was well-known at the time and featured a manger, which was subsequently considered to be the one in which Jesus was laid to rest.Origen writes in the voice of someone who is familiar with the location.He may likely have journeyed there personally when living in Judea, or he may have encountered people who had visited the place while residing in the region’s largest port town (as he did).
- However, Origen gives an extra early record that such a place existed and that its location was well known to Bethlehem townspeople at the time, which is a significant addition to the record.
- Another considerably weaker evidence from this time period is the ″Protoevangelium of James,″ which is largely apocryphal and non-historical in nature.
- As a work of quasi-gnostic (or, at the very least, doceticism), it retells the story of Jesus’ birth, drawing heavily on the biblical gospels while also including numerous imaginative details (for example, Jesus miraculously exiting Mary’s womb in a flash of light so that she remains in the clear physical state of her virginity, with nothing having passed through her body).
- In this book, which was composed somewhere in the late second or early third century, the narrative of Jesus’ birth in a cave outside of town near Bethlehem is assumed to be correct.
- 3 Chapter 18 of the Protoevangelium of James It goes without saying that this is not the type of source one should go to for historical information, but when paired with our other sources, it does demonstrate that the concept of Jesus being born in a cave was widely held both inside and outside the orthodox Christian religion.
- According to Origen, the place was evidently discussed ″even among those who are hostile to the Christian faith.″ During the fourth century, the historian Eusebius of Caesarea writes that Helena, the Christian mother of Emperor Constantine, donated funds to build a church on this site: ″For without delay she dedicated two churches to the God whom she adored, one at the grotto which had been the scene of the Saviour’s birth and the other on the mount of his ascension.″ For he who was ‘God with us’ had consented to be born even in a cave beneath the ground, and the Hebrews named the location of his birth Bethlehem, which means ″God with us.″ So the devout empress honored the site of her labour, where she gave birth to this divine child, with exquisite monuments and embellished the hallowed cave with every imaginable magnificence.
- ″The emperor himself soon after shown his devotion for the site by presenting princely sacrifices, and he further enhanced his mother’s splendour by lavish gifts of silver and gold, as well as embroidered hangings,″ the emperor writes.
- Chapter 43 of Eusebius of Caesarea’s The Life of Constantine is a good place to start.
- Another fourth-century historian, Socrates Scholasticus, writes in his Ecclesiastical History that Helena constructed a church ″over the grotto at Bethlehem where Christ was born.″ Socrates Scholasticus is the author of the Ecclesiastical History.
4, Chapter 17 of Book 1 of Ecclesiastical History by Socrates Scholasticus (accessed on November 11, 2021).However, because he lived a long distance away in Constantinople and was familiar with Eusebius’ work, it is possible that his testimony was little more than a repetition of what he had read in Eusebius.As a fourth-century Christian scholar most known for his contribution to the translation of The Latin Vulgate, Jerome spent the later portion of his life in Bethlehem, where he died in 396.(having moved to Palestine to learn Hebrew for his translation work).
- Throughout his letters, he makes frequent reference of the cave, referring to it as ″the grotto wherein the Son of God was born.″ 5Letter to Sabinianus, Section 4 (Letter CXLVII in ANF, ″that venerable cave″), letter to Sabinianus.
- 6Ibid., Section 6: ″the cave of His birth,″ which means ″the cave of His birth.″ Seventh, ″the cave of the rescuer,″ ibid.
- ANF Letter XLVI, Section 11 (Letter XLVI to Marcella), page 8 as well as ″the identical cave in which the newborn Christ had given His very first scream.″ 8The Third Section of Paulinus’ Letter LVIII (Letter LVIII in the ANF).
- According to what he says about it, ″Look, the Creator of the heavens was born here in this humble nook of the ground; here He was wrapped in swaddling cloths; here He was seen by the shepherds.″ Section 11 of Jerome’s Letter to Marcella is an example of this.
- 10Letter XLVI in the American National Flag He describes a location within the cave as ″now the altar, as it was once the manger, of the Lord,″ and he describes it as ″the altar, as it was once the manger, of the Lord.″ It is possible that the altar was specifically placed where the manger mentioned by Origen once sat in the Letter to Sabinianus, Section 5 (Letter CXLVII in ANF), while he could simply be using flowery language, it is very possible that the altar was specifically placed where the manger mentioned by Origen once sat.
- This contributes to the sense of continuity that exists between the two areas.
- The site ″the spot where the shepherds were minding their sheep when they heard the angels singing overhead″ is also mentioned by Jerome as an obviously well-known location.
- Section 6 of the aforementioned document.
- In this regard, there are several texts from the second through fourth century which demonstrate:
- According to early Christian tradition, the birth of Christ took place in a cave just outside of Bethlehem’s municipal limits
- that this grotto was at a site well-known to the residents and others in the surrounding region
- The fact that a church was subsequently built on that precise location
Some of these witnesses are certainly weak, while others are somewhat stronger; but, when taken as a whole, they indicate to a very early, consistent, and believable tradition of transmission.
The archeological evidence
Archaeology has a limited amount of information to provide us about this particular event.We will not be able to unearth the location of Jesus’ birth.Almost everyone involved in the events surrounding Jesus’ birth moved on to other endeavors, and it is presumed that they took their personal belongings with them.
- There would be nothing left to discover if this happened.
- However, there are a handful of ways in which archaeology can be of use.
- Is there any proof that the caverns under the existing Church of the Nativity were in use throughout that historical period, to begin with, when we examine them?
- If humans weren’t using these caverns to keep their animals, then they couldn’t possible be in the vicinity of where Jesus was born.
The reality of the matter is, however, that these caves were in fact in use by humans at the appropriate time period.13 Joel Cramer’s book, Where God Came Down: The Archaeological Evidence, is available online (Expedition Bible, 2020) 93 That does not rule out the possibility that Jesus was born in this location, but it does indicate that it is a possibility.For the second time, archaeology has revealed that today’s location of the Church of the Nativity is in fact the same location as the first church, which was erected in the fourth century.14 Randall Price, Zondervan Handbook of Biblical Archaeology (Zondervan, 2017), p.235.
Randall Price, Zondervan Handbook of Biblical Archaeology This suggests that the conventional location of today is the same site that dates back at least to the time of Eusebius and Jerome in the fourth century and probably definitely back to the time of Origen in the early third century, according to historical records.Therefore, it is not a huge jump to conclude that this is the cave Justin reported in the second century, which indicates that locals have continually believed this (and, to our knowledge, just this) place to be the site of Jesus’ birth for about 2,000 years.
Bethlehem was unquestionably the location of Jesus’ birth.After the arrival of the shepherds on that night, who brought news of angelic messengers and the birth of this child, followed by the later visit of the eastern Magi, who came to worship him, and the violent attack by King Herod, it is reasonable to assume that this small community was left with a lasting impression.It is possible that this would have prompted residents to recall and pass on the location of the incident.
- We have a very ancient story, which is supported by historical and archaeological evidence, that residents identified a certain cave just outside of town as the location where Jesus was born.
- The location of this cave is now marked by a church structure (and has been since the fourth century).
- However, while it is definitely conceivable that this tale is simply local folklore that formed very early on and managed to exist long enough for Christians to publicly acknowledge its authenticity, it appears extremely likely that this is the actual place of Jesus’ birth.
There are Two Bethlehems — In Which One was Jesus Born?
An email from one of my children arrived in my inbox the other day.″Since riding a donkey while pregnant would have been quite difficult for Mary, do you believe Jesus was born in the other Bethlehem, which is closer to Nazareth?″ she inquired in her letter.It goes without saying that she was enquiring about the voyage that Joseph and Mary had taken immediately before the birth of Jesus.
- Seeing as how she wrote rather than calling, I assumed she was at work and engaged in a conversation with someone regarding this biblical subject.
- Many people would be impressed just by the idea that there is a second town of Bethlehem in Israel, as this is not a widely recognized truth in the world.
- And talking about such a heavy subject matter impressed me because it demonstrated to me that she focuses on biblical concepts and views on a daily basis, rather than simply once a week at a church session.
- Anyone who takes the time to study a map of Israel in depth may find themselves asking the same question as my daughter.
Bethlehem of Galilee is located in the northern part of the nation, near Nazareth, whilst Bethlehem of Judea is located considerably farther south, close to Jerusalem.Here is a condensed account of the events leading up to the birth of Jesus.When the Roman emperor issued a proclamation, it said that a census would be taken across the city and that everyone would be required to return to their original town in order to be recorded (Luke 2:1-3).Joseph, Mary’s fiancé, had to journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem to be with her.Traveling to Bethlehem of Galilee (in the north) when pregnant and riding on a donkey would appear to be the more reasonable option, given that it is a considerably shorter journey than traveling to Bethlehem of Judea, which is a much longer distance.
Others have also thought of this possibility.
- Aviram Oshri, an archaeologist from Israel, had a similar concept not long ago.
- When he was digging at Jesus’s birthplace in Bethlehem of Galilee, he claimed to have discovered evidence ″that he feels shows that the traditional story of Jesus’ birthplace may be incorrect.″ ″A Byzantine-era church, with a cave concealed beneath the altar,″ he said, as well as portions of a wall that may have surrounded the settlement and a two-story structure that might have been an old khan or hotel.
- Each and every one of them would be from the time of Jesus’ life.″ 2 ″How would a lady who is nine months pregnant go 175 kilometers on a donkey all the way to Bethlehem in Judea?″ Oshri wondered, thinking about the disparity in travel time.
- I think it’s much more likely that she would have driven seven kilometers.″ 3 Having done some study, I believe he may have overstated the distance between Nazareth and Bethlehem of Judea, which is actually around 113 kilometers in distance (70 miles).
- 4 Furthermore, Mary and Joseph were not freely compelled to undertake this journey; rather, they were ordered to do so by the authorities.
- Face it, migrations over vast swaths of territory were never pleasant in the days before modern transportation, and pregnant women were not spared from the difficulties that accompanied them.
They may not have found it easy, but they persevered and made the journeys.Early settlers in the United States, where I now resided, established settlements in the western part of our nation by traversing this enormous terrain on horseback and in carts, long before any form of automated transportation was developed.Many of them were pregnant women, and they traveled not just a few miles, or even a few hundred miles, but thousands of kilometers without being able to travel on highways, giving birth to their children along the route.However, erroneous distance calculations and a failure to comprehend the requirements of long-distance travel were not the only flaws in Oshri’s hypothesis that I identified.
Evidently, he does not know or comprehend the Bible, because there are scriptural reasons to believe that our Lord was born in the town of Bethlehem in the land of Judea.Even according to a report in the Jerusalem-based newspaper The Times of Israel, ″when he presented his results to his employer, the Israel Antiquities Authority, he discovered that his plan had been discarded and described as ″worse than a joke.″ 5 The city of Bethlehem in Judea is expressly mentioned in the Bible as the location of the birthplace.In addition, Joseph traveled from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea and the city of David, which is known as Bethlehem, since he was descended from the house and family of David.″ He went to Mary’s house to be registered since he was engaged to her and she was expecting a kid.
″ (Luke 2:4-5, New Revised Standard Version).6 In addition, there is a prophesy at the Old Testament concerning Jesus being born in the city of Bethlehem in Judea (also known as Bethlehem of Ephrathah).7 The only exception is you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, you are one of the tiny clans of Judah; from you will come forth for me one who will rule in Israel, whose origins date back thousands of years, from the beginning of time (Micah 5:2).
- Not only is this city of Bethlehem the birthplace of Jesus Christ, but it is also known as the City of David because of its historical significance.
- According to the Bible, it was here in young David’s village that the prophet Samuel anointed him as king over Israel (1 Samuel 16:1-13).″ 8 Even earlier in biblical history, the town of Bethlehem of Ephrathah is mentioned for the first time in the first book of the Bible, where it is mentioned as the burial location of Jacob’s cherished wife, Rachel.
- 9 ″As a result, Rachel died and was buried on the road to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem),″ says the Bible (Genesis 35:19).
- Jesus was born as a result of this genetic connection.
- This hilly early Canaanite village, located around 2600 feet above sea level and surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea, has traditionally been associated with the patriarchal lineage.
- It is located along a historic caravan route and is regarded to be a melting pot of peoples and cultural traditions.
Did Mary ride on a donkey?
- What about the remark about a pregnant woman riding a donkey?
- What do you think?
- ″It is not specified in the Gospels whether Mary and Joseph walked or rode on the back of a donkey for conveyance.″ In reality, there is no scriptural mention of the kind of transportation that was employed.
- 11 Despite the fact that there is no mention of Mary riding a donkey in the New Testament story, donkeys were a common mode of transportation at the time.
- However, because there were several perils along important trade routes, ″the majority of current biblical experts believe it is more plausible that the Holy Family journeyed in a caravan of people,″ according to the New York Times.
- 12 One author presents a compelling argument in favor of a caravan.
According to the Bible, Mary and Joseph were not the only ones who traveled.It’s more than probable that the roads connecting cities were clogged with people traveling between them.A voyage like this would never be contemplated by a single person.Due to the fact that the terrain between towns was not policed, it would not have been safe, and bandits would have been a genuine threat.
For the sake of ease and safety, it is likely that the people traveled in large caravans.″Mary and Joseph would have been among the large number of individuals who had migrated.″ Individuals walking, as well as those using camels, would have been part of most caravans, which would have been accompanied by carts hauled by various animals.Nonetheless, I think it’s important to highlight this passage from an apocryphal gospel from the 2nd century AD, which does describe Mary riding on the back of a donkey.This text is said to have been written by ‘James the Just,’ the brother of Jesus, and it is dated about the year 500.
Despite the fact that it was extensively read, it was never admitted into the New Testament canon of scripture.13 (Please check the References and Notes section at the end of this article for a complete copy of this paper online.) 14 There was also an edict from the Emperor Augustus that everyone in the city of Bethlehem, Judah, should be enrolled.″I’m going to enroll my sons, but what am I going to do with this maiden?″ Joseph wondered.
- How do I go about enrolling her?
- As my wife, perhaps?
- I’m embarrassed.
- As if she were my daughter, then?
- She is not my daughter, though, as all of Israel’s sons are aware of this.″ ″The day of the Lord will bring everything to pass as the Lord wills,″ says the prophet.
- And he saddled the ass and placed her atop it; and his son led the way, with Joseph trailing close after (Protoevangelium of James, chapter 17).
Bethlehem of Galilee, which is now the second Bethlehem and is located around 6.5 miles (10.5 km) northwest of Nazareth, was traditionally a modest village noted for farming.Known also as Bethlehem of Zebulun (Joshua 19:15), this town was the burial location of Ibzan15 (Judges 12:10), the tenth judge of ancient Israel, who was buried here (see Joshua 19:15).16 Today, the community has a population of less than one thousand people and is mostly comprised of moshavs, which are agricultural social groups that work together cooperatively.
- 17 Listed below are a few other articles about Mary, the mother of Jesus, that you might be interested in learning more about: The following are some examples: (1) ″Puzzle Solved: Here is Jesus’ Birth Date, as well as the Day of Mary’s Conception, too,″ (2) ″Mary and Joseph — Mother and Foster-Father of Jesus,″ and (3) ″Jesus’ Mother was a Virgin — What?
- ″Is it even possible to do that?″ These articles are included in the References and Notes section of the book.
There is something going on down in Bethlehem.
- We know what happened at Bethlehem of Judea because of written records that were discovered after the event, but it was a complete surprise to the people who lived there at the time.
- They weren’t sure what to make of it, and the reality about what had happened was only slowly getting out.
- This concept is represented in the song that has been chosen to accompany this piece of writing.
- Down in Bethlehem is the title of the song, which is also known as ‘Something is Going on Down in Bethlehem’.
- It was recorded at the 78th Annual Christmas Show in 2011 and is given by Purdue University’s vocal music department19.
- The words for a few of the songs are provided below, and the music video is mentioned under References & Notes.
20 According to the wise men, there’s a story going about with some shepherds about a virgin conceiving, but the rumor is not real.If what that they’re claiming is true, that his mother had stopped to deliver while on the way to be taxed, and that he’s the prophesied Messiah, then God has a plan to bring salvation to me and you, and they’re calling him the promised Messiah.They claim that an angel prophesied the event.Something strange is going on in Bethlehem right now.
Copyright expires in 2021.Dr.Ray Hermann OutlawBibleStudent.org Dr.Ray Hermann OutlawBibleStudent.org Comments should be left at the end of the document, following ‘References & Notes’.
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References & Notes
- The apse is a large semicircular or polygonal recess with a domed ceiling that is often seen at the eastern end of a church. vaulted ceiling, vaulted ceiling In the 12th edition of the Oxford Concise Dictionary (published by Oxford University Press in the United Kingdom in 2011),
- Jessica Steinberg’s article ″Was Jesus born in a separate Bethlehem?″ was published in the Journal of Biblical Literature. On December 24, 2014, The Times of Israel published an article stating that
- The straight distance is around 70 miles (112.6 km), but highways are not always straight, thus adding an additional 10 miles (16.1 km) would result in a trip that would take nearly 4 days. Because of the pregnancy, it’s possible to add another day or two
- Jessica Steinberg’s article ″Was Jesus born in a separate Bethlehem?″ was published in the Journal of Biblical Literature. Unless otherwise noted, all scripture is taken from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, published by the Division of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America in 1989. With permission, this is being used
- The following resources are available: Fairchild, Mary, ″Explore Biblical Bethlehem: The City of David and Birthplace of Jesus,″ (Learn Religions), 14 September 2020
- Golding, Nechama, ″Rachel’s Tomb (Kever Rachel),″ (Chabad-Lubavitch Media, retrieved 30 May 2021)
- Koslaski, Philip, ″Did Mary ride a donkey to Bethlehem?″
- Fairchild, Mary, ″Explore Biblical (Aleteia, 17 December 2020),Ibid
- ″Protoevangelion of James″, (Orthodox Wiki, 11 May 2016),″The Protoevangelium of James″, (New Advent, retrieved 27 May 2021),Knight, George, W., in Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Chad Brand, et al., (Eds. ), (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 2003), p. 195
- ″An (Christian Answers Bible Encyclopedia, retrieved 28 May 2021), (3) ″Jesus’ Mother was a Virgin — What?,″ (The Outlaw Bible Student, OBS, 17 December 2020),(4) ″Mary & Joseph — Mother & Foster-Father of Jesus,″ (The Outlaw Bible Student, OBS, 9 October 2020),(5) ″Jesus’ Mother was a Virgin — What?,″ (The Outlaw Bible Student, OBS, 17 December 2020),(6) ″Jesus’ Mother was a Virgin — What?,″ (The Out ″Is it even possible to do that?″ Outlaw Bible Student (OBS) (October 1, 2020), Purdue University’s Musical Organizations: Purdue University, located in West Lafayette, Indiana, in the United States, does not have a formal school of music, but it does have a vocal music department (established in 1893) that includes six choral ensembles and one handbell chorus. The Purdue Christmas Show, where this event was recorded in 2011, is one of their many annual performances. ″Down in Bethlehem,″ performed by Purdue Musical Organizations at the 78th Annual Christmas Show in 2011 (no album, author, licensing, or copyright information provided
- used under ‘fair use’ copyright for educational purposes under Section 107 of the Copyright Act of 1976) The following music video is available: