The Pivotal Point in Time!

Reverend J. Loren Russell

Luke 2:1-7 NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.
Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”

This is the fourth and final Sunday of Advent, the four weeks leading up to Christmas in which Christians prepare and remember the real meaning of Christmas. There are four candles that are lit on each of the four Sundays leading up to Christmas. Each candle is lit according to a particular order and has a specific meaning. Today the candle of love is lit. There is a fifth candle that is lit on Christmas Day and symbolizes Jesus Christ, the light of the world. This is the one who the Bible says came because “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

The birth of Jesus is more than a symbolic gesture, it is the pivotal point in history. There is not another event that has had a greater impact. Whether you are a believer in Christ as savior of the world or not, there is no denying that His birth changed the course of human history forever. His birth literally dictates how we measure time. The writer of the book of Luke takes great care to chronicle the time when Jesus was born so that His birth can be verified historically. Caesar Augustus was the Emperor and Quirinus was the Governor, and the census was about to be taken. All can be authenticated as historical facts.

To take it a step further, in our modern-day vernacular, both BC (Before Christ), AD (Anno Domini, “in the year of our Lord”), and BCE (Before Common Era) and CE (Common Era), used by many non-Christians, identifies the time of Jesus birth. Both the Julian calendar and its Gregorian successor mark the time of Jesus’ birth as the singular event that changed the course of history forever. In fact, the year 2023 is 2,023 years after the birth of Christ, either AD or CE. The birth of Christ is the pivotal point in time. Tomorrow is Christmas, the day we celebrate and remember the birth of Jesus, the one who came so “that the world through him might be saved” (John 3:17).

Today, as we make final preparations for the historical arrival of the Christ, “the anointed one” in the Greek, and the “Messiah” in the Hebrew, let us be reminded that the real meaning of Christmas is not gifts purchased on Black Friday, or the last-minute rush at our favorite department store. On Christmas, “…, a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6 NKJV).

Aren’t you glad Jesus came at the pivotal point in time?

Have a Blessed Christmas Celebration!

Rev. J. Loren Russell

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at Goodwill Baptist Church and is the spiritual leader of the Evangelical Church of God, both in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company/J Loren R Consulting, LLC for Church Financial & Strategic Consulting (718-328-8096) and is the producer and host of “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Monday nights from 8:00 – 10:00 PM on Facebook Live. Be sure to ‘Friend’ the Matters of Faith YouTube Channel. Email us at Order your copy of Matters of Faith: The eBook at

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