Christian Life 

When was Jesus born?

In spite of the carol which sings of 'in the bleak mid-Winter' and in spite of any hard evidence regarding the time of Jesus birth it is highly unlikely that He was born in December.
 
first published 19/12/2010


With the schedule for temple duty fixed in Scripture,  Zechariah – in the line of Abijah (Luke 1:5) and allocated the 8th 2-week period of the Jewish year at the end of Tammuz (1 Chron 24:10) – would have been on temple duty around the end of June/beginning of July. (Nisan is the first month in the Jewish calendar.)

It was then that he received divine revelation concerning his wife Elizabeth becoming pregnant (Luke 1:11-13). Six months into that pregnancy (Luke 1:36) Mary was similarly shown that she was to 'be with child' (Luke 1:31).

It is therefore quite probable that Jesus was born in the Autum rather than at the end of the year.
In fact the shepherds wouldn't have been 'in their fields at night' in mid-Winter, nor would Caesar have been likely to have called a census which involved mass travel at that time of year.
 
Jesus birth small1

'Mouse-over' for the following Scripture references: 1 Chron. 24:10;  Luke 1:5; Luke 1:11-13;  Luke 1:31; Luke 1:36;  Luke 2:7
 
 

Christians Together, 01/10/2013

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John Miller 03/12/2013 14:15
Penny I agree with you. Anything that brings Christ and His miraculous virgin birth into the public arena, no matter how misguided the initial intention can give us the opportunity to witness to the real meaning of His first coming. The current T.V. advert for Save The Children proclaims, "No child was born to die." We can bear witness to a Child who was born to die, and why.

I received an email today and it contained this message -

"One of the most cherished traditions of Christmas is the sharing of gifts. Of course, the practice of gift exchange is not specifically mentioned in the Bible. This custom is simply a beautiful illustration of the events that occurred that first Christmas. I say that because everyone associated with the story gave something.

Mary offered her body as a vessel to bear a child conceived of the Holy Spirit, and in so doing, she also gave up her good reputation. The innkeeper opened his stable. The angels gave an announcement about the birth of the Messiah. The shepherds shared their testimonies about meeting the holy Child. The wise men sacrificed time, money, and effort to see the newborn King and bring Him expensive gifts.

Most importantly, God gave Jesus, His only begotten Son, to come into this world and die as a sacrifice for your sins and mine.

So enjoy giving at Christmas. Give to those who deserve it and to those who may be less deserving. Give joyfully, freely, and generously—not just at Christmas but all year long."

Innocent bystander (Guest) 03/12/2013 14:22
Penny Lee,
Sorry, I didn't mean to upset you.
Colin Ford (Guest) 03/12/2013 14:42
John,
Indeed we CAN bear witness to a "Child born to die". Silly advert! We are ALL born to die? Hebrews 9.27 KJV.
That advert is certainly a "denial of Scripture".

Also, "the practice of gift exchange" IS mentioned in the Bible; Esther 9.19 KJV, Nehemiah 8.10 KJV etc. The NIV renders "portion" as "Present". Purim is a man-made Jewish feast, but never the less, this practice is mentioned in Scripture.
John Miller 03/12/2013 15:49
Colin the purpose of Christ's first advent was as the Lamb of God to take away the sin of the world. Before His death in the countless ages of eternity He was pre-destined in God's eternal counsel to die an atoning death. His death stands alone, eternally unique.

Our deaths are the wages of sin.
Penny Lee 03/12/2013 16:47
Innocent Bystander, please don't think you upset me, you didn't. I was just wanting to explain that I know I have a real and precious personal relationship with God. Maturity has taught me that there are many things in life which are not worth getting into a stooshie about and Christmas trees are on of them. Honestly, no offence was taken by your comments. {{hugs}}.
Penny Lee 03/12/2013 16:51
Colin,

"I think you meant sinless"

Indeed I did - it's a pretty crucial mistake though, isn't it! I suspect it was another result of my iPad self-correcting facility, but it's pretty sad that it chooses 'sinful' over 'sinless' as its default. Perhaps an indication of how far we have fallen.
Dreamer (Guest) 03/12/2013 17:07
John, you said that Christ's death stands alone, eternally unique.
I understand where you're coming from - but, thank God, your wrong - because 'the elect' also were eternally predestined to die with Christ and thereby become reconciled to, and become eternally one with Him.
Editor 03/12/2013 17:15
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Colin Ford (Guest) 03/12/2013 18:09
Editor,
I have tried about three times to log in, three times failed!
I have followed instructions.
I will have another go tomorrow.

John, yes, indeed.

Revelation 13.8 KJV
John Miller 03/12/2013 18:31
Editor thanks for that. I appreciate your intervention. Dreamer's last post was a strange observation from one who professes to be a believer in Jesus Christ. I have no difficulty with the truth of predestination. How could I? It is biblical. To equate the death of God's only begotten Son with our death with Him or our physical death is wrong.

Our death with Him, signified in the ordinance of baptism is an expression of our faith in Him. It does not bear comparison with the death of our Lord and Saviour on the cross. In receiving Him as our Saviour we are divinely recognised as being dead with Him in the faith of our souls. He died an atoning death. It was and eternally will be so.

Our physical death, even though eternally saved by the blood of Christ, is nevertheless the wages of sin.

Even a Christian martyr, and who can refrain from pausing in awe at such faith, cannot be compared in their death with Christ. They died in faith because he had born their sins. Their deaths ushered them into His presence immediately. I do not disagree that our blessing in life as in death is the subject of predestination although I do not agree with the theories of extreme Calvinism which appears to remove man's responsibility. I await cries of disagreement!

The death of my Saviour, God's only begotten Son, eternally God in a His person was unique. It stands like some towering mystery in time and will remain so throughout the timeless ages of eternity.
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Christians Together in the Highlands and Islands > Christian Life > When was Jesus born?