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His-Child Blog - Jesus' Birth

O Holy Night (The Long Journey)

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O Holy Night

Over 2000 years ago, Mary and Joseph made the journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem. They likely traveled with a caravan of other travelers, perhaps with others returning for the census for the safety and companionship of traveling in numbers. We don’t know exactly what route they took—perhaps the shorter but more demanding walk along the trade route through the center of the region, or perhaps the flatter way through the Jordan River Valley. Regardless of the route, the approximately 100-mile trip would have taken them 8-10 long days of walking. This must have been a scary journey for young, pregnant Mary.

While we celebrate the birth of Jesus in December, some scholars believe it is more likely that he was born in September, so Mary and Joseph may have journeyed in the oppressive heat of July or August.

Today, visitors can walk this route for themselves, called the Nativity Trail, and was developed by Palestinians. The trail begins in Nazareth, hometown of Mary, and stretched straight down through the West Bank to Bethlehem, the city of Jesus’ birth. (http://jesustrail.com/blog/hiking-the-nativity-trail-from-nazareth-to-bethlehem)

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