"The Gospel of Egypt, Exile, and Nazareth" Matthew 2:13-28 (Advent 2016: The Presentation of the King)

This week we tackle the often forgotten part of the Christmas story. After the beauty and wonder of the manger, the angels and the magi, the darkness of human sin and evil invades Bethlehem. As the threatened king, Herod orders the murder of all male children two years old and under which leads to bloodshed and tears. His murderous plot forces Mary and Joseph to take baby Jesus to the land of Egypt for a season before returning home to Israel. As Matthew describes this scene, he distinctly points to Egypt, Rachel's weeping, and Nazareth as fulfillment of the prophets' words. And in explicitly pointing to these three themes, Matthew highlights the particularly good news of Jesus' birth. The gospel of Exodus, Exile, and Nazareth is a message our weary souls still need some 2,00 years later.