The Birth of Jesus
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman World. (This is the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
There were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them,'Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.Today in the town of David a saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you; You will find the baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.' Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel,praising God and saying.'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favour rests.' When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another,'Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened,which the Lord has told us about." So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all that heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned glorifying and praising God for all they had seen which were just as they had been told.
The meeting with Simeon
When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord,'Every first born male is to be consecrated to the Lord') ,and to offer a sacrifice keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord;'a pair of doves or two young pigeons' Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord's Christ. Moved by the spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:'Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light of revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel' The child's father and mother marvelled at what was said about him.Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother;'This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel and to be a sign that will be spoken against so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.'
A father's faith
A man named Jarius, a ruler of the synagogue, came and fell at Jesus' feet pleading with him to come to his house because his only daughter, a girl of about twelve was dying. While Jesus was still speaking someone came from the house of Jarius the synagogue ruler. 'Your daughter is dead' he said 'Don't bother the teacher anymore.'Hearing this Jesus said to Jarius,'don't be afraid; just believe and she will be healed.' When he arrived at the house of Jarius' he did not let anyone come in with him except Peter, Johnn and James and the child's father and mother. Meanwhile, all the people were wailing and mourning for her 'Stop wailing' Jesus said 'She is not dead but asleep'. They laughed at him knowing she was dead. But he took her by the hand and said 'My child get up!' Her spirit returned, and at once she stood up. Then Jesus told them to give her something to eat. Her parents were astonished but he ordered them not to tell anyone what had happened.
The woman's faith
As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak and immediately her bleeding stopped. 'Who touched me?' Jesus asked. When they all denied it Peter said, 'Master the people are crowding and pressing against you.' But Jesus said,'Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.' The the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people she told why she had touched him and and how she had been instantly healed. Then he said to her, 'Daughter your faith has healed you. Go in peace'
Jesus at the Pharisee's House
One of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, so he went to the Pharisee's house and reclined at the table. When a woman who had lived a sinful lfe in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume, and as she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them, and poured perfume on them. When the Pharisee who had invited them saw this he said to himself 'If this man were a prophet he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is - that she is a sinner' Jesus answered 'SImon I have something to tell you' "tell me teacher'he said. 'Two men owed money to a certain money-lender. One owed him five hundred denarii and the other fifty. Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he cancelled the debts of both. Now tell me which of them will love him more?' Simon replied 'I suppose the one who had the bigger debt cancelled.' 'You have judged correctly' Jesus said. Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon 'Do you see this woman/ I came into your house and you did not give me water for my feet but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss but this woman from the time I entered has not stopped kissing my feet. Therefore, I tell you her many sins have been forgiven because she loved much.But he who has been forgiven little loves little.' Then Jesus said to her,'Your sins are forgiven.' The other guests began to say among themselves, 'Who even is this who forgives sins?' Jesus said to the woman 'Your faith has saved you; go in peace'
in the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. The angel went to her and said 'Greetings you who are highly favoured the Lord is with you.
Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her 'Do not be afraid Mary, you have found favour with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called son of the most high. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.'How will this be' Mary asked the angel, since i am a virgin. The angel ansered'The holy spirit will come upon you and the power of the most high will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is now in her sixth month for nothing is impossible with God.' 'I am the Lords servant,' Mary answered. 'May it be to me as you have said' Then the angel left her.