And there were shepherds in the same region, lodging in the field, and keeping the night-watches over their flock, and lo, a messenger of the Lord stood over them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they feared a great fear.
And the messenger said to them, `Fear not, for lo, I bring you good news of great joy, that shall be to all the people– because there was born to you to-day a Saviour–who is Christ the Lord–in the city of David, and this is to you the sign: Ye shall find a babe wrapped up, lying in the manger.’
And suddenly there came with the messenger a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, `Glory in the highest to God, and upon earth peace, among men–good will.’ And it came to pass, when the messengers were gone away from them to the heavens, that the men, the shepherds, said unto one another, `We may go over indeed unto Bethlehem, and see this thing that hath come to pass, that the Lord did make known to us.’
And they came, having hasted, and found both Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger, and having seen, they made known abroad concerning the saying spoken to them concerning the child. (Luke 2:8-17 YLT)
I bet the actual birth of the child took place in the Light of DAY as opposed to the Darkness of NIGHT.
We are told the angel of the Lord appeared to shepherds who were camping out in the rural region tending flocks by night. Notice the angel said the baby was born “this day” or “to-day”. We are conditioned to believe a day can also include the night, but the Bible is written from the standpoint that the Day and the Night are completely separate.
and God saith, `Let light be;’ and light is. And God seeth the light that it is good, and God separateth between the light and the darkness, and God calleth to the light `Day,’ and to the darkness He hath called `Night;’ and there is an evening, and there is a morning–day one. (Genesis 1:3-5 YLT)
I can see the angel referring to “this day” figuratively as in “at this point in time”, but it could also be that he was saying specifically that it happened in the Day as opposed to in the Night.
The Darkness of Night
Religious tradition holds that the wise men (astrologers/sorcerers) that traveled from the east mentioned in Matthew 2 are part of the nativity scene, and that a star shone over the baby lying in a manger.
Because of this, coupled with the account in Luke 2 many are led to believe that the baby was born at night.
Songs are sung, crooning “Silent Night, Holy Night” and “O Holy Night…O Night Divine“.
Midnight masses and candlelight services are held throughout the land during the darkest part of the year to honor the birth of Christ the Saviour.
Many take much comfort in ceremonies such as these.
Meanwhile, folks who don’t embrace religious tradition surrounding the birth of Christ are cutting down live evergreens from the forest, even making the event a family affair.
The trees are propped up in and out of dwellings, fastened so they won’t topple over.
Then they are decked with strings of lights, garland and ornaments of silver and gold, and donned atop with some heavenly being like a brilliant star or an angel in white.
These statues shimmer in all their glory at night, and are often placed in the view of passersby for all to behold.
How beautiful it is when all the lights in the house are off and you can just bask in the glow of the work of man’s hands.
‘Tis the season to be jolly, feasting in pagan revelry, night after night. Office Parties, Family Gatherings, Secret Santa Gift Exchanges, Christmas Cookie Swaps, and Last Minute Shopping Sprees. Folks cuddle up by fires watching favorite holiday flicks, eating sweet treats, sipping hot beverages, embracing the season and all its trappings.
All the fanfare gears up for that special “Holy Night”. Children go to sleep on Christmas Eve in hopes of finding gifts wrapped in pretty packages, surrounding the feet of these graven images, from the one who takes inventory on whether they’ve been naughty or nice throughout the year.
Then these children are expected to bow down to this statue in order to receive their gifts, with parents looking on with great delight, cameras focused to record those special moments.
I’d like to say there is a stark contrast between those who celebrate the birth of Christ with midnight masses and candlelight services and the pagan revelry surrounding a decked out tree, but there really isn’t. In fact, many religious establishments will have these decorated greens in their foyers and beside their altars.
What’s most disturbing is that *the people of God*, those who have a sincere heart to follow hard after the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, as well as those who think they are honoring the God of Jesus Christ are sucked into participating in all of this, breaking the first three commandments of their God.
Exo 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before me.
Exo 20:4-6 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Exo 20:7 “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
While I can’t prove that Jesus was born in the DAY as opposed to the NIGHT (and I’m not interested in trying to do so), I suspect the tendency to give honor to the NIGHT with such songs as “O Holy Night!” and the multiple festivities surrounding the Darkness of Night is a work of the Enemy to steer us away from the Light of Day.
So much attention is given to the luminaries glowing in the darkness, whether they be flickers of candlelight, twinkling stars or stringed bulbs, rather than to the Light that was separated from the Darkness.
The glimmering lamps in the Night do not illuminate the deeds of Darkness. Rather, they only serve to soothe those walking in it.
The Light of Day
and God saith, `Let light be;’ and light is. And God seeth the light that it is good, and God separateth between the light and the darkness, and God calleth to the light `Day,‘ and to the darkness He hath called `Night;’… (Genesis 1:3-5a YLT)
Again, therefore, Jesus spake to them, saying, `I am the light of the world; he who is following me shall not walk in the darkness, but he shall have the light of the life.’ (John 8:12 YLT)
Jesus answered, `Are there not twelve hours in the day? if any one may walk in the day, he doth not stumble, because the light of this world he doth see; and if any one may walk in the night, he stumbleth, because the light is not in him.’ (John 11:9-10 YLT)
I choose to turn from the Darkness of Night and walk in the Light of Day.