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Luke 2:4

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

The city of David - Bethlehem, called the city of David because it was the place of his birth. See the notes at Matthew 2:1.

Because he was of the house - Of the family.

And lineage - The “lineage” denotes that he was descended from David as his father or ancestor. In taking a Jewish census, families were kept distinct; hence, all went to the “place” where their family had resided. Joseph was of the “family” of David, and hence he went up to the city of David. It is not improbable that he might also have had a small paternal estate in Bethlehem that rendered his presence there more desirable.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The fulness of time was now come, when God would send forth his Son, made of a woman, and made under the law. The circumstances of his birth were very mean. Christ was born at an inn; he came into the world to sojourn here for awhile, as at an inn, and to teach us to do likewise. We are become by sin like an outcast infant, helpless and forlorn; and such a one was Christ. He well knew how unwilling we are to be meanly lodged, clothed, or fed; how we desire to have our children decorated and indulged; how apt the poor are to envy the rich, and how prone the rich to disdain the poor. But when we by faith view the Son of God being made man and lying in a manger, our vanity, ambition, and envy are checked. We cannot, with this object rightly before us, seek great things for ourselves or our children.
Ellen G. White
Lift Him Up, 74.4

Christ did not make-believe take human nature; He did verily take it. He did in reality possess human nature. “As the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same.” He was the son of Mary; He was of the seed of David according to human descent. He is declared to be a man, even the Man Christ Jesus. “This man,” writes Paul, “was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honor than the house.” LHU 74.4

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Ellen G. White
Early Writings, 108-10

The time has come when a large portion of those who once rejoiced and shouted aloud for joy in view of the immediate coming of the Lord, are on the ground of the churches and the world who once derided them for believing that Jesus was coming, and circulated all manner of falsehoods to raise prejudice against them and destroy their influence. Now, if any one longs after the living God, hungering and thirsting for righteousness, and God gives him to feel His power, and satisfies his longing soul by shedding abroad His love in his heart, and if he glorifies God by praising Him, he is, by these professed believers in the soon coming of the Lord, often considered deluded, and charged with being mesmerized or having some wicked spirit. EW 108.1

Many of these professed Christians dress, talk, and act like the world, and the only thing by which they may be known is their profession. Though they profess to be looking for Christ, their conversation is not in heaven, but on worldly things. “What manner of persons” ought those to be “in all holy conversation and godliness,” who profess to be “looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God.” 2 Peter 3:11, 12. “Every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as He is pure.” 1 John 3:3. But it is evident that many who bear the name of Adventist study more to decorate their bodies and to appear well in the eyes of the world than they do to learn from the Word of God how they may be approved of Him. EW 108.2

What if the lovely Jesus, our pattern, should make His appearance among them and the professors of religion generally, as at His first advent? He was born in a manger. Follow Him through His life and ministry. He was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. These professed Christians would be ashamed of the meek and lowly Saviour who wore a plain, seamless coat, and had not where to lay His head. His spotless, self-denying life would condemn them; His holy solemnity would be a painful restraint upon their lightness and vain laughter; His guileless conversation would be a check to their worldly and covetous conversation; His declaring the unvarnished, cutting truth, would manifest their real character, and they would wish to get the meek pattern, the lovely Jesus, out of the way as soon as possible. They would be among the first to try to catch Him in His words, and raise the cry, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” EW 108.3

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Ellen G. White
The Desire of Ages, 44-7

With amazement the heavenly messengers beheld the indifference of that people whom God had called to communicate to the world the light of sacred truth. The Jewish nation had been preserved as a witness that Christ was to be born of the seed of Abraham and of David's line; yet they knew not that His coming was now at hand. In the temple the morning and the evening sacrifice daily pointed to the Lamb of God; yet even here was no preparation to receive Him. The priests and teachers of the nation knew not that the greatest event of the ages was about to take place. They rehearsed their meaningless prayers, and performed the rites of worship to be seen by men, but in their strife for riches and worldly honor they 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. To these heaven's embassy was sent. DA 44.1

Angels attend Joseph and Mary as they journey from their home in Nazareth to the city of David. The decree of imperial Rome for the enrollment of the peoples of her vast dominion has extended to the dwellers among the hills of Galilee. As in old time Cyrus was called to the throne of the world's empire that he might set free the captives of the Lord, so Caesar Augustus is made the agent for the fulfillment of God's purpose in bringing the mother of Jesus to Bethlehem. She is of the lineage of David, and the Son of David must be born in David's city. Out of 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. But in the city of their royal line, Joseph and Mary are unrecognized and unhonored. Weary and homeless, they traverse the entire length of the narrow street, from the gate of the city to the eastern extremity of the town, vainly seeking a resting place for the night. There is no room for them at the crowded inn. In a rude building where the beasts are sheltered, they at last find refuge, and here the Redeemer of the world is born. DA 44.2

Men know it not, but the tidings fill heaven with rejoicing. With a deeper and more tender interest the holy beings from the world of light are drawn to the earth. The whole world is brighter for His presence. Above the hills of Bethlehem are gathered an innumerable throng of angels. They wait the signal to declare the glad news to the world. Had the leaders in Israel been true to their trust, they might have shared the joy of heralding the birth of Jesus. But now they are passed by. DA 47.1

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Ellen G. White
Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 141

In childhood, Jesus did the works of an obedient child. He spoke and acted with the wisdom of a child, and not of a man, honoring His parents, and carrying out their wishes in helpful ways, according to the ability of a child. But at each stage of His development He was perfect, with the simple, natural grace of a sinless life. The Sacred Record says of His childhood, “The Child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him.” And of His youth it is recorded, “Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” Luke 2:40, 52. CT 141.1

The work of parents and teachers is here suggested.... They should aim so to cultivate the tendencies of the youth that at each stage of their life they may represent the natural beauty appropriate to the period, unfolding naturally, as do the plants in the garden. CT 141.2

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Ellen G. White
Christ's Object Lessons, 83

The work of parents and teachers is here suggested. They should aim so to cultivate the tendencies of the youth that at each stage of their life they may represent the natural beauty appropriate to that period, unfolding naturally, as do the plants in the garden. COL 83.1

Those children are most attractive who are natural, unaffected. It is not wise to give them special notice, and repeat their clever sayings before them. Vanity should not be encouraged by praising their looks, their words, or their actions. Nor should they be dressed in an expensive or showy manner. This encourages pride in them, and awakens envy in the hearts of their companions. COL 83.2

The little ones should be educated in childlike simplicity. They should be trained to be content with the small, helpful duties and the pleasures and experiences natural to their years. Childhood answers to the blade in the parable, and the blade has a beauty peculiarly its own. The children should not be forced into a precocious maturity but should retain as long as possible the freshness and grace of their early years. COL 83.3

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