A Reader's Response to the "Christmas" Sign
Dec 29, 2005
One of our readers had this to say about our article on the Manger of Bethlehem viewed as a Messianic sign:
"Another take on the first sign.
"In Gen. 34:21 the Targum Pseudo-Jon. paraphrases 'Migdal Eder,' or 'the tower of the flock' (at Bethlehem) as the place whence the Messiah would be revealed. This was the place where the Temple flock was kept so that sacrifices could be selected.
"Four or Five days after Rosh Hashanah the two goats were selected there and separated until Yom Kippur. They were placed in a cradle, wrapped in a linen so that they would not become unclean between there and the Temple mount and were carried by the priest and not allowed to walk or be lead into Jerusalem. Thus when the shepherds were told that they would find him in a manger wrapped in swaddling clothes, the infant's appearance was identical to that of the Yom Kippurim sacrifices.
"This was the prophecy of the appearance. Micah 4:8 is the prophecy in which many ancient Rabbi's believed would be the first appearance of the Messiah of Israel. The tower of Eder is mentioned in this verse.
4:8 And thou, O tower of the flock [tower of Eder], the stronghold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem.
"In 1981, Moshe Bronstein, an Israeli archeologist discovered a Greek mosaic tile at the archeological site of the tower of Eder that was inscribed "Christ was born here." Shortly after it's discovery, the mosaic disappeared. But there is present day excavation going on at this site right now. They also discovered three underground chambers that they suspect are where the animals were kept until they were called for by the Temple priest.
"An old inn forty yards up the up the hill was also discovered. If the Rabbi's were right, and the mosaic is true, then this could be the birth place of the Messiah in accordance with the Biblical prophecy.