1.) God chooses Bethlehem though it is INSIGNIFICANT.
- Micah 5:2a "But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah"
- Colossians 1:27-28 "God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things."
- Luke 1:46-48 "He has been mindful of the humble (lowly) state of his servant"
2.) God uses Bethlehem to fulfill his PURPOSE.
- Micah 5:2b "Out of you (Bethlehem) will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times"
- Philippians 2:13 "It is God who works in you to will and to act according to fulfill his good purpose"
- Psalm 57:2 "I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me"
3.) God gives Bethlehem peace as they await his ARRIVAL.
- Micah 5:3 "Therefore Israel will be abandoned until the time when she who is in labor gives birth"
- Galatians 4:4a "When the time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman"
- John 7:42 "Does not Scripture say that the Messiah will come from David's descendants and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived? (Luke 2:1-4)
- Psalm 130:5 "I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope"
- Micah 5:4-5 "He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. And they will live securely, for then his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth. And he will be their peace"
- Isaiah 40:11 "He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart"
- Micah 7:18-19 "Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression...You will again have compassion on us and hurl all our sins into the depths of the sea"
(1) What about Bethlehem can you relate to? When have you felt like the words of 1 Corinthians 1:27-28? Why is God drawn to the lowly?
(2) What was God's purpose for Bethlehem? How has God given you a sense of purpose?
(3) How long did Israel wait for the Messiah? When have you waited for God? What helps us as we wait? Read Hebrews 10:35-39. How is the Lord giving you peace as you wait? Pray for Jesus to bring peace to those who are waiting.