A Two-Podium Reading of Yeshua’s Birth
Designed for Children and Two Spotlights
1 – Left Podium
Some names and locations will be assigned their literal meanings. Bethlehem, for example, will be called House-of-Bread, and John’s name will be the Hebrew meaning of Yochanan, Yehovah-Favoured. Jesus’ name in Hebrew is Yeshua, and it means Salvation. We will call Him Yeshua or Salvation.
Dr. Lukas had a friend named Theophilus. He wrote his friend about the birth and life of Yeshua. This is the beginning of this narrative. I have sewed the Luke and Matthew texts together.
2 – Right Podium
L1:1 Forasmuch as many took in hand to draw up a narration concerning the matters that have been fully believed among us 2as they delivered to us, they having been eyewitnesses and attendants of the word from the beginning, 3it also seemed good to me to write to thee with method, having been accurately acquainted with all things from the first, most excellent Theophilus, so that thou wilt know concerning the certainty of the things of which thou wast instructed.
3 – Left Podium
Aharon lived many centuries before these events. His lineage was of the Israeli priests who alone had the right and responsibility to care for the Temple of Yehovah and the sacrifices. A course of priestly responsibilities was started before the time of the events that we are describing. Those courses were given names. One name was Avia.
4 – Right Podium
5There was a certain priest named Zachariah of the course of Avia in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea. And his wife is of the daughters of Aharon. And her name is Elisheva. 6And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of Yehovah, blameless. 7And there was not a child to them inasmuch as Elisheva was barren. And both were advanced in their days.
5 – Left Podium
The Temple was no place for the public to enter. It consisted of two small rooms, and only the High Priest and perhaps a worker were allowed to enter one of those rooms. The High Priest and a worker or two were allowed to enter the other room. If anyone tried to enter the Temple for any reason except those very few who had responsibilities, they would be killed. Yehovah commanded it that way. Any gatherings of the Israelis at the Temple were done outside of the main Temple building.
6 – Right Podium
8And he was during fulfilling his priestly service in the order of his course before God 9according to the custom of the priestly service. His lot was to burn incense, having entered into the Temple of Yehovah. 10And all the multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. 11And a messenger of Yehovah appeared to him standing at the right of the altar of incense. 12And Zechariah seeing him was troubled. And fear fell upon him. 13But the messenger said to him,
“Don’t fear, Zechariah. For thy supplication has been heard. And thy wife Elisheva shall bear thee a son. And thou shalt call his name Yehovah-Favoured. 14And he shall be joy and exultation to thee! And many shall rejoice at his birth. 15For he shall be great in the sight of Yehovah. And he shall in no wise drink wine and strong drink. And he shall even be filled with the Spirit of the Holy-[One] from his mother’s womb. 16And he shall turn many of the children of Israel to Yehovah their God. 17And he shall go-forth before him in the spirit and power of Elijah to turn the hearts of fathers upon children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous, to make ready a people prepared for Yehovah.”
18And Zechariah said to the messenger, “By what shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in her days.”
19And the messenger answering said to him, “I am Gabriel who stands in the sight of God. And I was sent to speak to thee and to announce to thee these beneficial-proclamations. 20And behold, thou shalt be silent and unable to speak until the day in which these things shall take place because thou didn’t believe my words that shall be fulfilled in their season.”
21And the people were expecting Zechariah. And they wondered at his delaying in the Temple. 22But having come out, he was not able speak to them. And they recognized that he had seen a vision in the Temple. And he was making signs to them, and continued dumb. 23And he was, when the days of his service were fulfilled, he departed to his house.
7 – Left Podium
Almost all women desired to birth children. Some thought that Yehovah didn’t favour a woman who was barren. Some would even speak badly about her and would reproach her, as if it were her fault.
8 – Right Podium
24And after those days Elisheva his wife conceived. And she hid herself five months, saying, 25 “Thus has Yehovah done to me in the days in which He looked to take away my reproach among men.”
9 – Left Podium
Being betrothed is the same as being married. The only difference is that those who are betrothed don’t yet live together, and haven’t had sexual intercourse with each other. They are married; they are not just engaged. Only after sexual intercourse do they know one another.
10 – Right Podium
M1:18Now, the birth of the Anointed Salvation was thus. 26And in the sixth month the messenger Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee whose name is Nazareth 27to a virgin betrothed to a man of the house of David whose name is Yoseph. And the virgin’s name is Miriam. 28And the messenger coming to her said, “Shalom, favoured-[one]! Yehovah is with thee! Thou art blessed among women!” 29But she, seeing, was troubled at his word. And she was reasoning of what kind this salutation might be. 30And the messenger said to her, “Don’t fear, Miriam. For thou hast found favour with God. 31And, behold, thou shalt conceive in the womb, and shall bring forth a son. And thou shalt call his name Salvation. 32He shall be great! And he shall be called the Son of the Highest. And Yehovah Elohim shall give him the throne of David his father. 33And he shall reign over the House of Jacob to Hider. And there shall be no end of his kingdom.”
11 – Left Podium
The expression, to Hider in Hebrew, means to the period of time beyond what the Bible describes. The Bible describes the period from the creation of the heavens and the land to when this planet will be burned with fire, and a new planet will be created. That period of time is revealed. The rest hides. Yehovah also hides from view so that humans can have faith. Faith isn’t necessary if everything is visible and fulfilled.
12 – Right Podium
34But Miriam said to the messenger, “How shall this be since I don’t know a man?” 35And the messenger answering said to her, “The Spirit of the Holy-[One] shall come upon thee. And the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee. Therefore also the Holy-[One] born shall be called the Son of God. 36And, behold, thy kinswoman Elisheva! She has also conceived a son in her old age. And this is the sixth month to her who was called barren. 37For not anything shall be impossible with God.” 38And Miriam said, “Behold the slavemaiden of Yehovah. Be it to me according to thy word.” And the messenger departed from her.
13 – Left Podium
When folks would greet each other, they would usually say, “Shalom!” That word means peace, and declares that those greeting each other have no debts to each other that haven’t been paid.
The Spirit of Yehovah is called the Spirit of the Holy-[One], since He is the Spirit of the Holy One of Israel. The word holy always means owned.
14 – Right Podium
39And Miriam arising in those days went into the hill country to a city of Judah with haste. 40And she entered into the house of Zechariah. And she ‘shalomed’ Elisheva. 41And he was: as Elisheva heard the ‘shalom’ of Miriam, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elisheva was filled with the Spirit of the Holy-[One]. 42And she shouted with a loud voice and said, “Thou art blessed among women! And the fruit of thy womb is blessed! 43And from where is this to me—that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44For behold, as the voice of thy salutation came into my ears, the baby leaped in exultation in my womb! 45And blessed is she who believed! For there shall be a fulfillment to the things spoken to her from Yehovah!”
46And Miriam said, My being magnifies Yehovah, 47And my spirit exulted in God my Saviour! 48For He has looked upon the humiliation of His slavemaiden! For, behold, all generations will call me blessed from now-on! 49For the Mighty-[One] has done great things to me! And His Name is holy! 50And His Grace is to generations generations to those fearing Him! 51He wrought strength with His arm. He scattered haughty-[ones] via thought of their heart. 52He put down rulers from thrones and exalted low-[ranking-ones]. 53He filled hungry-[ones] with good things. And He sent-away the rich empty. 54He helped Israel His servant to remember Grace according as He spoke to our fathers, to Avraham and to his seed to Hider!”
56And Miriam abode with her about three months. And she returned to her house.
57Now the time that she should child-birth was fulfilled to Elisheva. And she bore a son. 58And the neighbours and her kinsfolk heard that Yehovah was magnifying His Grace with her. And they rejoiced with her!
59And he was on the eighth day. They came to circumcise the little child. And they were calling him after the name of his father Zechariah. 60And his mother answering said, “No! But he shall be called Yehovah-Favoured!”
61And they said to her, “No one is among thy kinsfolk who is called by this name!”
62And they made signs to his father what he might wish him to be called. 63And having asked for a writing tablet, He wrote saying, “Yehovah-Favoured is his name!” And they all wondered. 64And his mouth immediately was opened, and his tongue. And he spoke, blessing God. 65And fear came upon all those who dwelt around them.
And all these things were being communicated in the whole hill-country of Judaea. 66And all who heard laid-up in their heart, saying, “What then will this little child be?”
And the hand of Yehovah was with him.
15 – Left Podium
The purpose of being filled with the Spirit of Yehovah is to be given the power to do some necessary function that would otherwise be impossible. Quoting Yehovah verbatim (that is, word for word) is impossible if the one speaking never previously heard those words. A prophet must be filled with the Spirit of Yehovah, since a true prophet always exactly quotes the testimony of Yeshua when prophesying.
A visit or visitation from Yehovah is when He directly interacts with a group (like Israel), usually to rescue or help in some way. The Hebrew text often speaks of visitations and their importance.
A ram’s horn, or in Hebrew, a Shofar, is blown like a small trumpet. The sound travels far. The sound can be used for an alarm or for gathering purposes.
16 – Right Podium
67 And Zechariah his father was filled with the Spirit of the Holy-[One]. And he prophesied saying, 68“Blessed is Yehovah the God of Israel! For He visited and did redemption for His people! 69And He raised a ram’s-horn of salvation for us in the House of David His servant 70just as He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets since time began! 71Salvation is from our enemies and from the hand of all those who hate us 72to fulfill Grace with our fathers and to remember His Holy Covenant, 73to give us the oath that He vowed to Avraham our father, 74being saved from the hand of our enemies. We will serve Him without fear 75in holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our lives! 76And thou, little child, shall be called prophet of the Highest! For thou shalt go before the faces of Yehovah to prepare His ways, 77to give knowledge of Salvation to His people in remission of their sins 78through bowels of compassion of our God in which the Sunrise from on high has visited us 79to shine upon those sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death, to direct our feet into the way of peace.”
80And the little child grew and was strengthened in spirit. And he was in the deserts until the day of his showing to Israel.
17 – Left Podium
Miriam and Yoseph must not have discussed what Gabriel told her. She must not have even told Yoseph that Gabriel came to her. That left Yoseph wondering how his wife had become pregnant, since he knew that he and she had not had sexual intercourse. All he knew was that she was pregnant, and she wasn’t declaring who the father was. He loved her, but he could not continue with a wife who wasn’t candid about what happened. He determined to divorce her.
He didn’t want to harm or shame her. The divorce had to be secret so that her reputation would not be tarnished by him. Others would know that she was pregnant, and would draw whatever conclusions they desired, but not by his actions.
Miriam knew that telling Yoseph would sound like a lie. She also knew that it was up to Yehovah to communicate with Yoseph so that he could again trust her. She was Yoseph’s wife, since betrothal is marriage, so she couldn’t ‘break an engagement’. She was in a terrible position, but she just waited.
18 – Right Podium
M1:18 Yeshua’s mother Miriam, having been betrothed to Yoseph, was found to be pregnant from the Spirit of the Holy-[One] before they came together. 19But Yoseph her husband secretly purposed to put her away, being righteous and not willing to publicly expose her.
20And when he had pondered these things, behold a messenger of Yehovah appeared to him in a dream saying, “Yoseph son of David! Don’t fear to take to Miriam thy wife! For what is in her is owned—is begotten by the Spirit! 21And she shall bring forth a son. And thou shalt call His Name Salvation. For He shall save His people from their sins!” 22Now this all came to pass that what was spoken by Yehovah through the prophet will be fulfilled, saying, 23 “Behold the pregnant virgin! And she shall child a son. And they shall call His Name Immanuel,” which being interpreted is ‘God-With-Us.’ 24And having been aroused from sleep, Yoseph did as the messenger of Yehovah had ordered him. And he took his wife. 25And he didn’t know her until she brought forth her son—the firstborn.
19 – Left Podium
The Kaesar in Rome was as a prince. He ruled like a king over the Roman Empire. Registration was for taxation. Anyone among the common folk avoiding registration and taxation faced terrible consequences. The command of Kaesar Augustus included the necessity of men returning to the cities from which they originally came.
20 – Right Podium
L2:1 And he was in those days. A decree went out from Kaesar Augustus that all the inhabited-land shall be registered. 2This first registration took place when Kyrenios was governor of Syria. 3And all went to be registered—each to his own city. 4And Yoseph also ascended from Galilee, from the city Nazareth to Judea, to a city of David that is called House-of-Bread (because of his being of the House and family of David) 5to register himself with Miriam who was betrothed to him as wife, she being large-in-pregnancy.
6And he was in the [time] they were there: The days of her birthing were fulfilled. 7And she childed her first-born son. And she wrapped Him in swaddling-rags. And she laid Him in the feed-trough because there was not a place for them in the inn.
8And shepherds were lodging in the fields in the same region and keeping guard over their flock by night. 9And behold, a messenger of Yehovah stood by them. And the glory of Yehovah shined around them. And they feared a great fear.
10And the messenger said to them, “Don’t fear. For behold, I bring-a-message of great joy to you that shall be to all the people! 11For a Saviour who is the Anointed-[One] of Yehovah was born to you today in the city of David! 12And this is the sign to you: Ye shall find a baby wrapped in swaddling-rags lying in the feed-trough.”
13And suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly army with the messenger commending God and saying, 14 “Importance is to God in the highest! And peace is in men of good-thinking on earth!” 15And he was, as the messengers departed from them into the heavens.
And the men shepherds said to one another, “We shall indeed go-through as far as House-of-Bread! And we will see this thing that has come to pass—that Yehovah made known to us!”
16And they came, having hasted. And they found both Miriam and Yoseph, and the baby lying in the feed-trough! 17And having seen, they broadcasted concerning the saying that had been told them concerning this little child. 18And all who heard wondered concerning the things that had been spoken to them by the shepherds.
19But Miriam kept all these sayings, pondering in her heart.
20And the shepherds returned, glorifying and commending God for all things that they had heard as it was said to them, and they had seen.
21And when eight days were fulfilled for circumcising the little child, Yoseph called His Name Salvation—that was called by the messenger before He was conceived in the womb.
21 – Left Podium
The Torah of Yehovah is the Teaching of Yehovah, also known as the Teaching of Moshe, referring to Moses. The first six books of the Bible are the Torah, the Teaching.
An Israeli woman who birthed a child would remain unclean for a specified number of days after the birth. Since she was unclean, which has nothing to do with being dirty, but instead means that she could not join in any assembly of the Israelis, and she could not touch anything without making it unclean. In other words, others would need to help and even pamper her during this period so that she wouldn’t cause them to become unclean! It was more like a vacation for her, so that she could concentrate on her newborn.
22 – Right Podium
22And when the days for their purification according to the Teaching of Moshe were fulfilled, They brought Him to Jerusalem to present to Yehovah 23as it has been written in the Teaching of Yehovah: that every male opening a womb shall be called the property of Yehovah, 24and to offer a sacrifice according to what has been said in the Teaching of Yehovah: a pair of turtledoves or two young of pigeons.
23 – Left Podium
The word Christ comes from the Greek word Christos meaning anointed one. This is the same as the word Messiah that comes from the Hebrew word Mashiakh, also meaning anointed one. Yehovah already had anointed a number of persons, like David. Anyone anointed was assigned a task that the person would successfully do. Several evil persons were also anointed, assigned to tasks and positions, and they did evil in those positions.
Yeshua is Anointed by Yehovah. His assignment was to be the sacrifice for the sin of the world, as well as being King of all kings and Lord of all lords in the future. Many in Israel desired to know the identity of Yehovah’s Messiah, since He will also save Israel from Israel’s enemies.
The Messiah was also known as the Consolation of Israel, since He would console Israel after many centuries of grief brought by Israel’s sin and the wrath of Yehovah. That consolation will come when Israel turns from sin.
24 – Right Podium
25And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name is Hearkening. And this man is righteous and well-received, waiting for the Consolation of Israel. And the Spirit of the Holy-[One] was upon him. 26And it was divinely communicated to him by the Spirit of the Holy-[One] that he will not see death before he will see Yehovah’s Anointed-[One]. 27And he came in the Spirit into the Temple. And when the parents brought the little child Salvation so that they might do for Him according to what had become customary by the Teaching, 28he also received Him into his arms. And he blessed God. And he said, 29 “Now, Master, Thou art sending Thy slave in peace according to Thy speech! 30For my eyes have seen Thy Salvation 31Whom Thou prepared before the faces of all the peoples: 32the Light for revelation of races, and the Importance of Thy people Israel!”
33And Yoseph and His mother were wondering at the things that were spoken concerning Him. 34And Hearkening blessed them. And he said to Miriam His mother, “Behold, this is set for the fall and arising of many in Israel, and for a sign spoken against!—35and of thee also: a sword shall pierce thy being!—so that reasonings of many hearts will be revealed!”
36And there was Khannah, a prophetess, daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in many days, having lived seven years with a husband from her virginity. 37And she is a widow of about 84 years who didn’t depart from the Temple, serving with fastings and supplications night and day. 38And she positioning at the same hour confessed to Yehovah. And she spoke concerning Him to all those waiting for Redemption in Jerusalem. 39And when they had completed all things according to the Teaching of Yehovah, they returned to Galilee to their city, Nazareth.
40And the little child grew. And He became strong in spirit, being filled with wisdom. And the favour of God was upon Him.
25 – Left Podium
These astrologers read the constellations as a few read the Bible: literally. Yehovah printed His plan in the constellations, but few have learned to read. Many treat the Bible the same way as modern astrologers treat the constellations: they don’t believe it literally, and they can’t read it properly. These astrologers read and believed, fearing Yehovah the God of Israel.
They came to worship Him: that is, to prostrate (lay down flat) before Him, showing that they were His servants. Worshipping always means to lay down flat, face-down before another or before something.
26 – Right Podium
M2:1 Now Salvation, having been born in House-of-Bread of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, astrologers from the east arrived at Jerusalem 2saying, “Where is He who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw His star in the sunrise. And we are come to worship Him.” 3But Herod the king was troubled, having heard, and all Jerusalem with him. 4And having gathered together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah should be born. 5And they said to him, “In House-of-Bread of Judaea. For thus it has been written by the prophet: 6 ‘And thou House-of-Bread, land of Judah, in no wise art least among the governors of Judah. For a leader shall go forth out of thee’ who shall shepherd my People Israel.”
7Then Herod, having secretly called the astrologers, exacted from them the time of the appearing star. 8And having sent them to House-of-Bread, he said, “Having gone, exactingly-search for the little child. And when ye shall have found, bring word back to me that I also may worship him, having come.” 9And they departed, having heard the king.
And behold, the star that they saw in the east led-before them, until, having come, it stood over where the little child was. 10And they rejoiced an exceedingly great joy, having seen the star. 11And having come into the house, they found the little child with Miriam His mother. And having fallen down, they worshipped Him. And having opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him—gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12And they withdrew by another way into their own country, having been admonished in a dream not to return to Herod.
13Now they, having withdrawn, behold an messenger of Yehovah appears in a dream to Yoseph, saying, “Having risen, take and flee into Egypt with the little child and his Mama. And be there until I tell thee. For Herod is about to seek the little child and destroy him.”
14And he, having risen, took and withdrew into Egypt with the little child and His mother by night. 15And he was there until the death of Herod so that what was spoken by Yehovah through the prophet will be fulfilled, saying, “I called to my son from Egypt.”
27 – Left Podium
These astrologers arrived about a year and a half after Yeshua’s birth. Note the age of the children that Herod will target.
28 – Right Podium
16Then Herod was greatly enraged, having seen that he was mocked by the Astrologers. And having sent, he killed all boys from two years old and under who were in House-of-Bread and in all its borders according to the time that he had accurately inquired from the Astrologers. 17Then that which was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled, saying, 18 “A voice in Rama was heard: lamentation, weeping of bitternesses. Rachel is weeping concerning her sons. She is refusing to be consoled concerning her sons. For they aren’t!”
19But Herod having died, behold an messenger of Yehovah appears to Yoseph in Egypt in a dream, 20saying, “Having risen, take and go into the Land of Israel with the little child and His mama. For they who were seeking the life of the little child have died.” 21And he, having risen, took and came into the Land of Israel with the little child and His mama. 22But he was afraid to go there, having heard that Archelaus reigns over Judaea instead of Herod his father. And he withdrew into the parts of the Galilee, having been divinely instructed in a dream.
23And having come, he dwelt in a city called Nazareth so that what was spoken by the prophets, that he shall be called a Nazarene, shall be fulfilled.
29 – Left Podium
We have read you the words of the events surrounding Yeshua’s birth, including the slaughter of many innocent children when Yeshua was about a year and a half old. If you are a normal hearer, you will see this as a romantic tale of events, then you will celebrate Christmas according to your family customs. You will think of three wise men from the east who arrived at baby Jesus’ manger, when the text never gives the number of astrologers, and they certainly do not arrive at the manger. You will think of Mary riding a donkey with Joseph beside her, when the text never indicates that she rode anything. You will imagine animals in the stable when no animals are mentioned. You won’t ask why Miriam placed the newborn into a feed trough. You won’t consider why gold, frankincense and myrrh, of all things, were given to them as gifts. You won’t ask how long the astrologers traveled to arrive in Israel, and in what country or countries they lived. You won’t consider how important the literal people and land of Israel are in the plan of Yehovah for all humans. If you are a normal hearer, you will only hear what you desired to hear and what you desired to imagine.
If you are a hearer with the capacity to hearken to the Word of God, however, you will ask many questions, and you will seek many answers.
We produced this for you—not so you would be entertained at this time of yearly entertainment, and not so that you would watch us read and sing, but so that you would think and ask.
Yeshua never was called Immanuel. He will be.
O come, O come Immanuel, and ransom captive Israel that lies in lonely exile here…