Passage: Luke 2:1~7  

Key verse: 7

1. Caesar Augustus (1-3)

Rome ruled the world; she enforced 'Pax Romana'--Roman peace. She exacted taxes from all her colonial possessions. Caesar Augustus' word was law. When he ordered a census of the entire Roman world, everyone had to go and register--irrespective of personal circumstances. Caesar represents worldly power. His palace represents a selfish, pleasure-seeking lifestyle.

2. The Baby in the manger (4-7)

Joseph and Mary also had to register. They had to go to Bethlehem, even though Mary had reached the full term of her pregnancy. In Bethlehem, everything was crowded and everybody was busy. Joseph was one of the powerless people. He was poor and he had no clout; he couldn't get a room in the inn. Still, there is no room in a sinful world and no room in crooked hearts for the Savior. The Son of God was born in a stable and laid in a manger. But Jesus, not Caesar, is the ruler of the world. Only Jesus' kingdom is eternal.

Prayer: Lord, help me to love Jesus' humble lifestyle; give me eyes to see things as they really are, so that I may pity Caesar, not envy him.

One Word: The baby in the manger