RE:QUESTA space for resources to help RE teachers and their students explore the Christian faith
Lat Blaylock, Editor, RE Today
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Jesus' Birth Story
Was Jesus the Messiah that everyone was waiting for?
Christmas is an important time for Christians. It is the time when they remember God coming to earth in the form of a baby (this is known as the incarnation). In the Bible, Jesus is referred to as ‘Immanuel,’ which means ‘God with us.’ The story of the first Christmas can be found in Luke 1 - 2 and in Matthew 1- 2.
Christians do not believe that Christmas simply 'began' in Bethlehem just over 2000 years ago. They believe that 'prophets' taught about the birth of Jesus hundreds of years earlier. The Jewish people were waiting for a Messiah - a person sent by God to make wrong things right again. Many of the Jewish prophets and teachers had written and talked about where the Messiah would come from, what he would be like and the things he would do. Christians believe that Jesus was the Messiah spoken about all those years before he was even born.
Among the most famous of these teachings can be found in the Old Testament book Isaiah chapters 7 and 9. Isaiah teaches that the Messiah would come from the line of King David, that he would be born of a virgin and would be known as Immanuel, God with us. Also, the Book of Micah teaches that the Messiah will be born in Bethlehem.
These prophecies and others lead Christians to believe that Jesus was the Messiah: Son of God, saviour of the world, sent by God to restore humans to a relationship with God.