Why didn’t the Father book a room for His son? He wasn’t taken by surprise the day Jesus entered the world. He could have organised somewhere…after all He is God.
(Image from FreePik)
(Image from FreePik)
‘No room in the inn’ seems a poor excuse. Jesus’ Father could have booked weeks earlier. God can orchestrate these things. A few years ago, we decided on Tuesday to go away for the weekend. It was Easter. So two days before we left, I searched for a quiet place to rest and recover. I found a lovely cottage–overlooking a river valley, less than two hours away. When we arrived it was the perfect place for us. We asked the hosts why it was still available. They shrugged, puzzled themselves. They’d been booked solid nearly all year - except Easter!
If God could organise a room for me, why didn’t He do the same, if not for his Son, then for Mary. A young girl still a virgin untouched and inexperienced in the realities of women’s struggles. She had to labour on the floor of a barn.
But maybe the stable was not a mistake or an oversight.
Could it have been God’s idea?
The rest of Jesus’ life seemed to follow a plan. The clue is in the angel’s message to the shepherds.
“For today in Bethlehem a rescuer was born for you. He is Lord Yahweh, The Messiah. You will recognise him by this miracle sign: You will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a feeding trough!” Luke 2:11-12 The Passion Translation.
It’s a miracle, not a mistake, that the baby lay in a feeding trough, wrapped in strips of cloth. The Bible footnotes led me to search further. (Image from Public Domain)
It wasn’t just any shepherds the angels appeared to. They were shepherd priests – men charged with watching over the lambs bred especially for sacrifice. Scholars believe the Bethlehem shepherds were caring for the lambs being prepared for Passover. Every sacrifice had to be presented spotless, without blemish. When they were born, the shepherds wrapped their bodies and legs in strips of cloth and laid them in feeding troughs. This protected them until they steady on their feet.
How Amazing! Jesus, the Lamb of God, destined to be offered for your sin and mine at the festival of Passover, was born in the same place and treated the same way as a Passover Lamb.
The Word tells us Jesus fulfilled every bit of the law…even to being born in like manner to the lambs for hundreds of years before Him.
Jesus’ Father, God, made sure there was no room at the inn, just as He ensured Joseph would have to take Mary to Bethlehem.
Thirty-three years later the man, Jesus, would ride into to Jerusalem on a donkey, thus fulfilling many Scriptures. On the same day, the shepherds would have been herding their sheep into Jerusalem. Each Hebrew family selected a lamb and took it home to care for it until they were sacrificed, in accordance with Moses instructions. That sacrifice happened five days later, in the temple in Jerusalem, at the same time Jesus, our Passover lamb, hung on the cross; dying so the world might live.
Our Heavenly Father is a father of details. Mary, like us, may not have understood why her miracle baby was laid in a manger but her baby’s Father knew what He was doing! That’s why He didn’t have a room waiting.
Mary trusted. Can we too trust God when we don’t understand? Can we trust God to orchestrate the plots in our stories, to bring out every tiny detail? Bring the document alive? I believe we can! Do you?
May you have a happy and blessed day as you celebrate the miracle of our Saviour’s birth.
Jo Wanmer lives in Brisbane, Qld with her Husband Steve. Together they run a business and help pastor Access Church at Burpengary. Her first book, Though the Bud be Bruised, won a Caleb award for best Unpublished Manuscript and was published in 2012. Three more books are written, but not yet published. Due to health and family matters, Jo hasn’t written for the last two years. Please pray that she can find her keyboard again in 2019.