“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register. So Joseph also went up form the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.” Luke 2:1-5
Mary and Joseph lived under Roman rule and had to go to Bethlehem as part of the census. God used a pagan ruler to move the birth of His Son to Bethlehem where according to prophesy Messiah was to be born. Micah 5:2 “But you, Bethlehem, Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.” God is a God of details and not one prophesy about Jesus would be overlooked. As we look at the life of Jesus we can see prophecy after prophecy that was fulfilled in His life. There is no possible way that all the things said about the coming Messiah could have been accomplished except by an all powerful and wise God. I am reminded of the words of Daniel in Daniel 2:20-21 “Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his. He changes times and seasons; he sets up kings and deposes them. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning. He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness and light dwells with him.”
What does this tell us about God? God is wise He is not simply all knowing. He always uses His knowledge to do exactly what is right. God’s Word is full of His wisdom. Both His plan of redemption and His creation are perfectly wise. God is wise in the plan He has for each of His children individually. All wisdom comes from God. To be wise we must seek Him. All the details of Jesus’ coming to Earth, His future ministry and sacrifice for all mankind were planned with God’s wisdom and executed by His power. Joseph and Mary were part of God’s plan for the birth of God’s Son as well as Caesar Augustus who issued the decree causing them to travel to Bethlehem. All the details were made and carried out by a wise and loving God.
What does this mean for you and me today? Through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit and God’s Word, I can learn, know and apply God’s wisdom in my life. Ephesians 1:7-8 “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.” Paul put it this way in 1 Corinthians 2:13 “This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words.” Learning to walk in God’s wisdom is a life-long endeavor and achieved only by God’s grace. Studying passages like today’s story show the power and wisdom of God. He brought all worldly events under His power and direction and it helps us to see that God is wise in all He does and we can trust Him fully.