The Birth of Jesus

Luke 2

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived.

Jesus Presented in the Temple

When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”), and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.”

Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

“Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss your servant in peace.
For my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.”

The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.

Consequences Intended or Not

Whenever special interest driven politicians force social engineering on Americans and their Armed Forces, there are always consequences.

The premise is that all homosexuals want to be known primarily by their sexual identity. If this is true why did a college kid commit suicide when his homosexuality, obviously against his desire, was made public? I am asking because the popular meme is that every homosexual is eager to share his or her private sexual identity with the remainder of the world and treat it as his or her primary attribute. That may not be so, but it will be the consequence of this particular endeavor into social engineering.

If you accept that premise then your indoctrination is complete. The only people you cannot tolerate are the Christian fanatics who still believe in something with a foundation infinitely more solid than moral relativism.

Has anyone given even a modicum of thought about the feelings of homosexuals who are serving and are doing so because they want to be identified as Soldiers first before they are identified as being homosexuals? How many of them will end up like the college kid from Rutgers because people like Congressman Barney Frank insists that we accept a person because of their sexual orientation before we accept them as anything else?

Might I ask you? Do you want your spouse to post on Facebook or stand on your front lawn and lay out the details of your private sex life to everyone who passes by whether they care a whit to know about it or not and regardless of your feelings on the matter?

Is sexual orientation now going to be our most important identifying characteristic – for Soldiers or anyone? Superseding even race, ethnicity and gender – another hyphen preceding our already hyphenated identities? If it is, then the fallacy that repealing the law is actually about service is clearly exposed. Is it not?

I read the discussion forums frequented by Army Noncommissioned Officers. There is no overwhelming number either for or against open homosexual service. Most of them are firm in what they believe. That is what I expect of Army NCOs. Stand up for what you believe. But support what you believe with what you know, not what you think you know or how you feel. Do some critical thinking about this issue that takes you below the red herrings of service and rampant homophobia.

I read in those forums that homosexuals have always served and we all know who they are. Do you know any? Can you name them? What difference does it make now if you point them out to the rest of us who are not perceptive enough to identify homosexuals on sight?

In all of my time in the Army, including 4 years as a Unit First Sergeant and 6 years as a Command Sergeant Major, I saw many more trained and qualified Soldiers separated for being overweight than for being homosexual. Not all of them wanted to leave the service either. Why were they separated? It was certainly not because of their performance. Many of them worked much harder than the pencil-necked headquarters policy wonks just to prove that they were worth keeping. They were separated because they did not fit into someone’s idea of what a Soldier should look like. Their sin was having more than the allowable amount of body fat. Often only a little more. There are dogonned few jobs in the Army that require thin bodies.

I am not too concerned about the troops themselves, only their safety. They will fulfill their obligations and do what is asked of them. American Soldiers are renowned for their ability to adapt to their situation, but how many of them will remain at the end of their obligation?

I am more concerned about the leadership. I know a tad about military leaders. They want the led to view them as Soldiers and leaders first and not as something else. They do not want the deadly possibility that Soldiers might lose even a little bit of trust in them because they may be distracted by the leader’s homosexuality. When there are any chinks in the armor of trust that an Army leader wears, he or she becomes less effective and subsequently a more deadly leader. It is just a matter of fact.

The other thing we are told is that thousands now serving in the military will no longer have to live a lie. You would think by the talk and discussions that our military forces are overwhelmingly homosexual. Pardon me if I am just a bit skeptical of that presumption.

The remainder of the military, comprising many more thousands and including the leadership who do not accept homosexuality as normal behavior, will now most certainly have to choose to live a lie about who they are by pretending that they do accept it. That is more dangerous to any military unit than outright and overt opposition. Or they can be true to what they believe and hold dear, as has been pounded into the heads of American Soldiers for generations, salute and quietly leave for a place where they are not forced to accept as moral something they firmly believe is immoral.

If I heard it once, I heard it a hundred of times. The Army recruits Soldiers, it retains families. This is unquestionably true. More than half of our Soldiers, at least the last time I looked, are married. The number of married Soldiers has steadily increased since we became an all-volunteer force in the 70’s. This reflects a career, professional, and volunteer force. That is one reason we are for now the world’s best. How many of those career families that provide the most professional leadership of any military force in the history of the world will now exit at the first opportunity?

The Commander in Chief, his Congress, the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff have established their legacies. Let us see how history records them. Maybe we will be the next dusty volume in the historical collection of the rise and fall of great nations. Maybe that is the consequence, intended or not.

© 2010