Bed of Stone (Chapter 8 of Jesus: His Story In Stone)

In that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the heart of Egypt, and a pillar to the Lord at its border. –Isaiah 19:19

Jacob used a stone for a pillow; Jesus used a stone for a bed. We’ve seen the sort of stone manger in which He likely was laid as an infant. Later on, during the Holy Family’s sojourn in Egypt, it is believed they spent six months living in a cave near Mount Qussqam, during which time the Christ child slept on a bed of stone.

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Corban (Chapter 6 of Jesus: His Story In Stone)

Joseph and Mary took Jesus to Jerusalem … to offer a sacrifice in keeping with the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.” –Luke 2:22-4

The accompanying photographs show two different views of the rounded shard of a first century stone vessel discovered on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. The shard bears a crude inscription of two upside down (presumably dead) birds along with the Aramaic word corban, meaning sacrifice.

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The Presentation (Chapter 5 of Jesus: His Story In Stone)

When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took Jesus to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord. (Luke 2:22)

Six weeks after Jesus’ birth, Joseph and Mary walked the six miles from Bethlehem to Jerusalem for the ceremony of Presentation. Pictured in the photograph are the very steps they would have ascended with their newborn son in order to enter the Temple. Later, as a twelve-year boy and then as a man, Jesus would ascend these same steps under His own strength.

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A Stone Manger (Chapter 4 of Jesus: His Story In Stone)

“You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:12)

A manger is a feed trough for animals. The word is related to the French manger, to eat. If you were to attend a French-speaking eucharistic service, as the priest or minister placed the morsel of bread in your hands he would say, “Prenez, mangez.” Take, eat.

The name Bethlehem means House of Bread.

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Jesus: His Story In Stone (Preface, Part 2)

The stones covered in my new book Jesus: His Story In Stone fall into three categories: 1) those we can be fairly certain Jesus knew or even touched; 2) those He probably or possibly knew; 3) those that were not authentically a part of His life but that are reminiscent of stones He did know. As much as possible I’ve given preference to the first two categories, as these hold the greatest evocative power.

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Jesus: His Story In Stone (Preface, Part 1)

“And they are there to this day.” (Joshua 4:9)

My new book, Jesus: His Story In Stone, could be described as an illustrated biography of Jesus. It presents, in chronological order, seventy significant events of the gospel narrative, bringing them to life though photographs and word-pictures of stones that Jesus may have touched, walked on, or seen with His own eyes.

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