And you, O tower of the flock, hill of the daughter of Zion, to you shall it come, the former dominion shall come, kingship for the daughter of Jerusalem. Micah 4:8
quickpage by PattyB
Some believe this “tower of the flock” could be the location of the manger where Jesus was laid, as it is said to be where the sacrificial lambs were examined and then wrapped and swaddled to keep them from being blemished. That would add more meaning to the detail about the swaddling clothes being included. The shepherds would have been very familiar with it, so it would explain how they seemed to know exactly where they were going after the announcement of the angel, who didn’t mention any inn. Needless to say, we all know that Jesus is the Lamb of God. (John 1:29, 36, Isa. 53:7, Acts 8:32, 1Cor. 5:7, 1Pet. 1:18-19, Rev. 5:5-14, 6:15-17, 7:9-17, 12:10-12, 13:7-8, 14:1-5, 9-13, 17:12-14, 19:7-9, 21:9, 22-22:1-5)
The stories we’ve heard and movies we’ve seen about an innkeeper (usually urged by his wife) taking them out back to the stable were embellished beyond what the Bible says. (No surprise there, right?! We know very well that the wise men visited Jesus when His family was living in a house, but yet this detail is often ignored by tradition. See Matt. 2:11.) Here is what the passage about the manger actually says (notice there is no mention of a stable or various animals being present as we usually have in our nativity scenes):
And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. Luke 2:7-16
But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days. Micah 5:2
While we’re on the topic of tradition taking precedence over Scripture, the Bible does not give a date for the birth of Jesus. It’s generally accepted that the date was chosen in order to help new believers who had been pagans celebrating another festival at that time to switch their focus to Jesus during that season. While it’s a good outreach to have a major celebration each year reminding people how Jesus came to save us from our sins, we should make sure that’s not the only time we share the Good News.