TITLE: The Big Event
DATE: January 4, 2019
TEXT: Psalm 90:12 -(ESV) -12 So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
So, here we are, four days into the New Year. I wonder:
Have you had to correct yourself writing a check?
How many students have gotten the year wrong when submitting a test or paper?
Has anyone had to start over on a legal document because of an error on the year?
These things happen. After all, we are only human and we can get confused as to the year. Not all of us will automatically use the correct year, 2772. And no, that is not a typo. It is correct. This year is 2772 years since the founding of the city of Rome.
You see, there was a time when every country touched by Rome, dated their calendars from the year the city of Rome came into being. Try as they might, they could think of nothing which was more important, more trustworthy, more permanent, more powerful than this nation which ruled much of the known world for so many centuries.
And then something happened.
Something happened which overshadowed Rome; something happened which stood head-and-shoulders above every other date in human history. At first that year had very little to recommend it:
In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when[a]Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town.
And so it was Jesus Christ, God’s Son and our promised Savior was born according to prophecy and promise. The next decades would be marked by Jesus perfectly fulfilling the laws we have broken and resisting Satan’s sly seductions to sin, the carrying of our transgressions to the cross ,where they would be paid for by Jesus innocent suffering and death. Through Jesus salvation was offered to all who were called to faith by the Holy Spirit.
And that’s how our calendar went from ab urbe condita, Latin for “from the founding of the city (of Rome)” to BC, Before Christ and AD, Anno Domini, the birthday year if our Lord. All of history was redated and put before, or after, the birth of our Redeemer.
Of course you may have noted not so many people use BC and AD nowadays.
Dating of history is now based on Before the Current Era (BCE) and the Current Era (CE).
Wow, you may think to yourself.” Something pretty significant must have happened at the year “0” to make a change that big.” You may wonder “What historical event could have overshadowed Jesus’ birth and how come I never heard about it when I was in school?”
Well, my friends, there was no super-big, colossal, unbelievable event in the year “0.”
Go to the year “0” and you will find Jesus. Nobody else. Nothing else. Just Jesus. So why did we change? What happened was this. Smart-type people didn’t want to appear to be prejudiced toward one type of religion over another. They wanted to appear to be open-minded, broadminded, and accepting of all kinds of faiths and belief systems.
So they searched, and they searched, and they searched, for a really important date. And do you know what they found? They found nothing could match “0”; nobody was more important than “Jesus” and all of history, AD or CE; BC or BCE is based on His arrival in Bethlehem.
The only difference between them is the spelling.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, many important things may happen n 2019, but none will be more important than having Jesus at the center of my calendar. May ever day be lived in Him Who is the center of my history. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann, one of my long-ago confirmands. He is singing with three brothers. This song comes from the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html