Summary: there is one more person hiding in this Christmas story. – Luke does not mention him directly. We do not know his name either, yet we can see him there quite clearly. He is a well-known person, standing in the background of this sentence: “There was no ro
We often have a feeling that the people we know, or the events we experience on a regular basis cannot surprise us with anything new and therefore they cannot enrich our lives anymore. Christmas is just like that. Only children can still be amazed by everything that is happening during that time – by its beauty and special “events”. It is not especially exciting and maybe not even appealing for us adults. We know its typical atmosphere and we know what will go on. We know exactly what kinds of cookies our wife or mother-in-law will bake, what will be on the festival table when we return from church, which Christmas movies will be broadcast on TV, as well as what Bible lessons the pastor will read in church. – I am pretty sure we are also familiar with the text we just read. We know the setting where Jesus’ birth took place, we know the names mentioned in the story. – And yet! If we dare to dive into the depth of this fantastic story and stop just skimming the surface a brand new message will appear.
I am not sure if you noticed it when reading this text quickly but there is one more person hiding in this Christmas story. – Luke does not mention him directly. We do not know his name either, yet we can see him there quite clearly. He is a well-known person, standing in the background of this sentence: “There was no room available for them.” – Yes, in my Christmas Eve sermon I want to focus on the owner of the Bethlehem inn who had to tell this unpleasant news to Joseph and Mary: “We are full; there is no room for you.”
Since the Scripture did not assign him any name let’s try to give him one. Let’s be honest and ask ourselves one question: Isn’t this nameless man a picture of someone who is sitting in this church? Shouldn’t I attach my name to this character? Isn’t it me who does not have room for the coming King?
Three things about this nameless man will help us understand his actions, and therefore our own as well.
1) It is obvious that each inn has its accommodation limits. A census does not take place every day so it is no wonder there were no vacancies. There was no room for anyone. – This situation seems like a picture of the life of a contemporary person. Our lives are often so full of so many responsibilities and worries that there is no room for anything else. How often do we realize that we do not have any time left for any of those things we consider so important in the corner of our hearts. We must take care of so many tasks that it is naive to even think we could manage anything else. – You may not be rejecting Jesus Christ, the Son of God, in any deliberate way, you may be telling yourselves that you believe in Him, He is your authority, and in spite of that, you do not have enough room for him. The business of our lives and lack of time simply do not allow for some things. And yet the solution is so simple. Why not re-evaluate our lives and make the changes?