9: Later that night...

“…while they were there,  she gave birth to her first-born son. She dressed him in baby clothes and laid him on a bed of hay, because there was no room for them in the guest-room.”

It was time. God's son was about to be born into the world. Jesus was born, not in a palace, or even in a guest room! Instead, the creator of the universe was born in the room attached to the house where the animals were kept. It may even have been one room shared by all the people in the house, with the animals in one corner. 

This is what it might have looked like:

This image comes from www.psephizo.com

The family would have had a mule or a donkey to plough their fields or to carry all their gear when they travelled. They were too precious to leave out in the winter cold. And the animals acted like a heating system for the house. They helped make things nice and warm.
This is a beautiful painting on a church wall in Bethlehem,
but can you spot what needs to be changed to make it accurate?

So, that night, in this warm room, with the smell of the animals and fresh hay, a baby is born. But not just any baby. This is Jesus, the one God has sent to rescue people, to bring light to the darkness. And Mary wraps him up to keep him warm, and she places him in the animal’s feed trough. Mary doesn’t want the animals to accidentally stand on her baby!
And just in case you are imagining a wooden box with long legs, the feed trough was most likely carved from stone, or was a hollow in the ground filled with straw.


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