The Bible records that Mary brought forth her firstborn son, Jesus Christ, who was conceived in her by the Holy Spirit (Matthew 1:20), and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger. Usually in sermons pertaining to the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ, the focus is often given to the dirty and unsuitable conditions of the place where Jesus was born and laid – in a manger for there was no room in the inn (Luke 2:7). But did you know that the English word “manger” has its roots in Anglo-French which in turn derives from the Latin word manducare, which means to chew or to eat.
So the phrase “laid in a manger” would literally means, “laid to be eaten.” Jesus said that he willingly laid down his life for us (1 John 3:16). When Jesus instituted the Lord’s supper, he also said, that one ought to take and eat him, the bread of life from heaven (John 6:31-35), that was broken (1 Corinthians 11:23-25), symbolically referring to taking Christ in to assimilate in one’s own self.
Points to ponder:
Man fell from the glory of God by taking and eating the fruit from the tree that was forbidden (Genesis 3:11-24). Man is reconciled with God by taking and assimilating Christ into their life. This Christmas while we think about the birth of Jesus, let us not forget that he was laid in a manger – meaning he was laid to be taken in by us. Have you believed and assimilated Jesus Christ in your life? Jesus was laid in a manger … let us not just leave him there!
Luke 6:7 (KJV)
7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
1 Corinthians 11:23-25 (KJV)
23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
1 John 3:16 (KJV)
16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.