This is Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International with the Whyte House Devotional Bible Reading of the Christmas Story.
1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Cae’-sar Au-gus’-tus that all the world should be taxed.
2 (And this taxing was first made when Cy-re’-ni-us was governor of Syr’-i-a.)
3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
4 And Jo’-seph also went up from Gal’-i-lee, out of the city of Naz’-a-reth, into Ju-dae’-a, unto the city of Da’-vid, which is called Beth’-le-hem; (because he was of the house and lineage of Da’-vid:)
5 To be taxed with Mar’-y his espoused wife, being great with child.
6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of Da’-vid a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Beth’-le-hem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
16 And they came with haste, and found Mar’-y, and Jo’-seph, and the babe lying in a manger.
17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
19 But Mar’-y kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
21 And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Je’-sus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.
22 And when the days of her purification according to the law of Mo’-ses were accomplished, they brought him to Je-ru’-sa-lem, to present him to the Lord;
23 (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;)
24 And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.
25 And, behold, there was a man in Je-ru’-sa-lem, whose name was Sim’-e-on; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Is’-ra-el: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.
26 And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.
27 And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Je’-sus, to do for him after the custom of the law,
28 Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,
29 Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:
30 For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
31 Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
32 A light to lighten the Gen’-tiles, and the glory of thy people Is’-ra-el.
33 And Jo’-seph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him.
34 And Sim’-e-on blessed them, and said unto Mar’-y his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Is’-ra-el; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;
35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
36 And there was one An’-na, a prophetess, the daughter of Pha-nu’-el, of the tribe of A’-ser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;
37 And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.
38 And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Je-ru’-sa-lem.
39 And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Gal’-i-lee, to their own city Naz’-a-reth.
40 And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.
41 Now his parents went to Je-ru’-sa-lem every year at the feast of the passover.
42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Je-ru’-sa-lem after the custom of the feast.
43 And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Je’-sus tarried behind in Je-ru’-sa-lem; and Jo’-seph and his mother knew not of it.
44 But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day’s journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance.
45 And when they found him not, they turned back again to Je-ru’-sa-lem, seeking him.
46 And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions.
47 And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.
48 And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.
49 And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?
50 And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.
51 And he went down with them, and came to Naz’-a-reth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart.
52 And Je’-sus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.
When I was a teenager I wanted to get wisdom and knowledge, so I set out to read the big family Bible that many families had in those days. But I couldn’t get past Genesis 2 before I got bored with reading the Bible. I found out later in life that you have to believe on Christ and get saved before you can understand the Bible. So here is how I became a Christian and how you can too:
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 18:8: “Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at email@example.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless.