Merry Christmas! Jesus’ birth more than 2,000 years ago is both divine and historical. So many faith traditions point to this, a special day. Let his grace and peace reign in your heart, at home, at work, and in public. Go spread the joy.
The Birth of Jesus. *18 Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, * but before they lived together, she was found with child through the holy Spirit. 19 Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, * yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly.
20j Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord * appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. 21 She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, * because he will save his people from their sins. ”22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet:
which means “God is with us. ”24 When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home. 25 He had no relations with her until she bore a son, * and he named him Jesus.
The Birth of Jesus. 1* In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus * that the whole world should be enrolled. 2 This was the first enrollment when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 So all went to be enrolled, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph too went up from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to Judea, to the city of David that is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, a5 to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child.
B 6 While they were there, the time came for her to have her child, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn son. * She wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.c
8 * Now there were shepherds in that region living in the fields and keeping the night watch over their flock. 9 The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were struck with great fear. d 10 The angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 * e For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying: 14 * “Glory to God in the highest f and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
The Visit of the Shepherds.15 When the angels went away from them to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go, then, to Bethlehem to see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.”16 So they went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger.17 When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child.18 All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds.19 And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. 20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them.
2 He was in the beginning with God.
What came to be 4 through him was life, and this life was the light of the human race;c
6* A man named John was sent from God.e 7 He came for testimony,* to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him.f 8 He was not the light, but came to testify to the light.g 9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.h
10 He was in the world, and the world came to be through him, but the world did not know him.
11He came to what was his own, but his own people * did not accept him.
12i But to those who did accept him he gave power to become children of God, to those who believe in his name,13 * j who were born not by natural generation nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision but of God.
15* John testified to him and cried out, saying, “This was he of whom I said,l ‘The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me because he existed before me.’” 16 From his fullness we have all received, grace in place of grace,* 17 because while the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.m 18 No one has ever seen God. The only Son, God, * who is at the Father’s side, has revealed him.n