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POOR? LITTLE JESUS BOY Empty POOR? LITTLE JESUS BOY

Post  Admin on Mon 09 Dec 2013, 8:34 pm

POOR? LITTLE JESUS BOY
If you think the manger scene proves Jesus’ family was poor, think again.
Copyright 2013  Leslie A Turvey

A servant of the only true and living God

The big day is coming. The tree will soon be decorated, and gaily-packaged 
gifts will be placed around the base. The crèche, with its plastic baby 
Jesus
laying on some artificial straw, is already in its usual place of honour. 
And the tune of Poor Little Jesus Boy, They Made You Be Born In A Manger, 
plays
in your mind. But does Jesus’ manger birth indicate poverty?

Nothing in the bible indicates Mary and Joseph were poor. In fact the 
adjective the in Matthew 13:55 tells us Joseph was a well-known carpenter. 
As such
his family was likely quite wealthy.

Joseph was an honest man (Matthew 1:19). He would not cut corners in his 
work, nor would he use second-grade materials where they wouldn’t show. 
Everything
about his work had to be first rate. After all, the future saviour of the 
world had to learn perfection (Hebrews 5:8-9), and Joseph’s workmanship 
would
be needed as an example. Jesus obviously learned the trade well, as the 
people also recognized him as the carpenter (Mark 6:3).

Who do the wealthy people – even kings – choose to build a house, or create 
a piece of furniture? Certainly not Cut-Rate Clem. They want their home and
furnishings to be the best. And who would pay more attention to detail than 
Joseph and Jesus?

The idea that Joseph and Mary were poor arises from the fact that Jesus was 
born in a stable. But their journey to Bethlehem, Joseph’s home town, was at
God’s autumn festival season (Leviticus 23:23-36). With thousands of people 
congregating in the Jerusalem area, the inns were crowded.

If it had only been Joseph and his pregnant wife, a compassionate innkeeper 
may have made room for them in his establishment. But they likely had a 
midwife
to care for Mary during her delivery. A few servants may have accompanied 
them. The innkeepers wouldn’t be able to find room for them all. Only one is
remembered because he provided them with the best shelter he had available.

“Wait!” you may say. “If Joseph and Mary were so rich, wouldn’t they 
complain about having to live in a stable?” That’s doubtful. Considering it 
was the
only lodging available, they would accept it, or live on the street.

But there’s more. Mary knew the origin of her pregnancy (Luke 2:26-35), and 
was blessed (vss 46-49). Joseph also knew her pregnancy was through God’s 
holy
spirit (Matthew 1:18-23), and was the fulfillment of Isaiah’s virgin-birth 
prophecy (Isaiah 7:14). Far be it from them to complain about whatever 
lodging
God gave them.

So, as you and the kids prepare for another Christmas, give some thought to a 
child born into a family of wealth, yet who reached out to the poor and the sick
and the needy.
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