Since we don't observe Jesus Christ's birth in December as most Christians do, we occasionally hear comments regarding the observance of His birth that seem to imply that we don't appreciate it as much as we "should". Consequently, this year I decided to do a Bible study dealing with the birth of Christ. It seems quite possible that He was born in September (see The Star Research), which is why I picked this month to start this study. Hopefully we’ll get through the whole of it over the course of this month, but no promises. :-)
Even though it has been many years since my own family stopped celebrating Christmas, it has still been interesting to me to dig into this wonderful event without all the trappings of the "holiday season" to distract me and reinterpret things for me, and yet curiously I still feel the residual effect of all that. It's really amazing to me how much the traditions of "Christmas" have influenced the celebration of Jesus' birth among Christians. If you study it without any reference to all the "holiday spirit", it seems so different from the glitzy event that goes on in so many churches and homes in December. This alone is reason enough to rethink how we deal with it, in my humble opinion.
This will be a basic verse by verse study, but not one where every word is detailed out. Because this is a long study, I am going to divide it up into sections to make it easier to read.