I had been thinking about what to write this coming Christmas time, when I came across this quote the other day. I thought it sufficient enough, rather than go into a long theological treatise! So without further ado, here is a quote/excerpt by David H. Petersen, author of God With Us:
“The Savior is born unto you in Bethlehem, the house of bread, on earth. It is no coincidence that He lacked a crib and was placed instead into a feeding trough. He was born unto you to be bread: bread for beasts, bread for wolves, and bread for sheep. He comes in His body to feed you into life, to slake your thirst, to satisfy your soul. He is put into a manger, not only because He is rejected by men and there is no room for Him in Bethlehem’s inns but also because He gives Himself to you, as food, on earth.”
“We do not put a statue of a baby in the manger because we think that Jesus is still in the manger. We put a statue in the manger to remember that Jesus was a baby, that He took up our flesh and our burden. An empty manger just won’t do. The fact that God has a body, was born of a woman, for us, is not a tiny detail in the story or somehow not the important part. It is the essence of the story. In the same way, we do not put a statue of Jesus on the cross because we think that He is not risen. We know and we rejoice that He is risen. But an empty cross just won’t do. The fact that He was crucified in His body is not just a detail or somehow the prelude to the more significant event. It is the essence of the story. We preach Christ crucified.”
It also just occurred to me whilst I was writing this, that the Bread of Life was born in the House of Bread — the literal meaning of Bethlehem!
I never saw the connection before.
Also, as a final note, here's an interesting article on the prophetic fulfilment of Bethlehem too, for your spiritual nourishment: Bethlehem: House of Bread. Enjoy!
Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
Have a good Christmas