Did Jesus really lay in a manger?

by Lesley on December 12, 2012 · 3 comments

in christmas

I have a question. It’s kind of serious, but not really. Ready?

After baby Jesus was born, do you really think he could be found wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger? (Luke 2:12)

I posed this question to Jonathan the other night as we washed dishes. This is basically how our conversation went…

Me: I have a hard time believing baby Jesus was ever put in a dirty manger.

Him: Why?

Me: I don’t know much about history 2,000 years ago, but do you think people really made cribs for their children? Things seemed so much simpler back then. They probably had small little houses, especially working families, and I just kind of think it’s more likely they all slept in the same bed together. Plus, Mary knew Jesus was a KING! And it was her firstborn! I didn’t want to put Anna down for a second when she was first born. I mean, eventually I did because I was exhausted. But if there hadn’t been a clean little hospital crib for her I’d have been happy to hold her on my chest. Why would Mary lay him down in a dirty trough?

Jonathan: So, you’re saying you think Mary had post-partum depression?

Silence.

I smirked.

Me: I don’t get that conclusion.

Him: Well, it says in the bible that Jesus could be found lying in a manger, so are you saying that Mary should have been holding him?

Me: I guess I’m saying I don’t believe the bible.

He smirked.

We went back to washing dishes.

So, people, tell me what you think! Obviously this not a super serious theological debate, nor am I really all that concerned with determining where Jesus slept his first night or two or three. I guess I just think about things a little differently now that I’ve given birth. Have you ever really pictured Jesus first days?

{Related reading: Sharon Hodde Miller’s I Wonder if Mary Had Morning Sickness?}

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