From Heaven With Love


Chapter 4—Born in a Stable

This chapter is based on Luke 2:1-20.

The King of glory stooped low to take humanity. His glory veiled, He shunned all outward display. Jesus purposed that no attraction of an earthly nature should call men to His side. Only the beauty of heavenly truth must draw those who would follow Him. He desired men to accept Him on the testimony of the Word of God. HLv 25.1

The angels watched to see how the people of God would receive His Son, clothed in the garb of humanity. To the land where the light of prophecy had shone, the angels came. They came unseen to Jerusalem and the ministers of God's house. HLv 25.2

Already to Zacharias the priest, as he ministered before the altar, the nearness of Christ's coming had been announced. Already the forerunner was born, and tidings of his birth and the significance of his mission had been spread abroad. Yet Jerusalem was not preparing to welcome her Redeemer. God had called the Jewish nation to communicate to the world that Christ was to be born of David's line, yet they knew not that His coming was at hand. HLv 25.3

In the temple the morning and evening sacrifice pointed to the Lamb of God, yet even here was no preparation to receive Him. Priests and teachers rehearsed their meaningless prayers and performed the rites of worship, but were not prepared for the revelation of the Messiah. The same indifference pervaded the land of Israel. Hearts selfish and world-engrossed were untouched by the joy that thrilled all heaven. Only a few were longing to behold the Unseen. HLv 25.4

Angels attended Joseph and Mary as they journeyed from Nazareth to the city of David. The decree of Rome for enrollment of the peoples of her vast domain had extended to the hills of Galilee. Caesar Augustus became God's agent in bringing the mother of Jesus to Bethlehem. She was of the lineage of David, and the Son of David must be born in David's city. “Out of thee [Bethlehem],” said the prophet, “shall He come forth ... that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from the days of eternity.” Micah 5:2, margin. HLv 26.1

But in the city of this royal line, Joseph and Mary were unrecognized, unhonored. Weary and homeless, they traversed the narrow street to the eastern extremity of town, vainly seeking a resting place for the night. There was no room at the crowded inn. In a rude building where beasts were sheltered, they at last found refuge, and here the Redeemer was born. HLv 26.2

The tidings filled heaven with rejoicing. Holy beings from the world of light were drawn to earth. Above the hills of Bethlehem a throng of angels waited the signal to declare the glad news to the world. The leaders in Israel might have shared the joy of heralding the birth of Jesus. But they were passed by. To those who seek light and accept it with gladness, the bright rays from the throne of God will shine. See Isaiah 44:3; Psalm 112:4. HLv 26.3