“But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (Micah 5:2 Holy Bible, King James Version).

A modern day expectant mother carefully selects the best and most convenient hospital or alternate facility for the birth of her child. Mary, the mother of Jesus was given no choice in her child’s birthplace. Her holy child would be born in Bethlehem far away from Nazareth, Joseph’s home, as prophesied. This single event would shine a spotlight on an obscure village for the whole world to see.

Prayer: Eternal God, tiny Bethlehem was destined to be the birthplace of Jesus. Nothing could change that because Your prophecies and promises are certain. This gives me great faith. You have known my future from the beginning and You are in control of events in my life, too. Amen.

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6 Holy Bible, King James Version).

Isaiah was inspired to speak these names of the promised redeemer. This son captured the essence of Wonderful, Counsellor and Prince of Peace. Ultimately the world would recognize that this holy child was The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father. What a promise!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I am so thankful for the Old Testament prophet Isaiah who delivered the message You gave him. His words inspired hope for all who believed. Because of this prophecy, I can believe with the ancients that the Holy One has brought meaning to my life because He was God on earth. Thank You that You cared for me before I was born. Amen.

Numbers 24:17 in the Amplified Version of the Holy Bible, “What I saw in my vision hasn’t happened yet. But someday, a king of Israel will appear like a star…”

Imagine! Some 2000 years passed from the time of this prophetic declaration of Jesus’ birth until its fulfillment in Matthew 2:2. An unusual star did light the night sky giving direction to the wise men who came to worship the new born King. It was the will of God that this brilliant celestial body would announce to all the nations that the Gospel of Jesus Christ would extend itself beyond the borders of Israel to the entire world.

Prayer: Dear God, I pray that I won’t miss Your invitation to draw near and simply worship. You are my bright and morning star! You have called me to bring my gifts of praise and adoration into Your throne room. While I linger in Your presence, grant me patience and unwavering faith to endure until the fulfillment of the promises You have given me. Amen.

Devotion by Julie Long