Christians will sometimes say something like “You know, I’ve read this verse tons of times, and yet today it said something different to me! I’ve never thought about it that way.”
Perhaps it’s too much Linus around this time of year. Or perhaps it’s just the ol’ Baptist upbringing. The Christmas story always sounds best in the King James Version, right? I mean, who doesn’t want their Christmas story to be “Authorized”? I can tell you from memory what the angels told the shepherds: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Right? You know that verse right?
Today, in studying for teaching my high school Bible class, I read the Christmas story in Luke 2 from the New Living translation (NLT). I’ve asked the students to read the NLT as I think it’s easier for them to understand 21st century English rather than 17th century Elizabethan. The NLT renders that verse
The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!Luke 2:11
Just the way that translation renders the text: the Savior! the Messiah! the Lord! For some reason it carries so much more weight when written that way. It seems so more emphatic. He’s THE Christ. THE Lord. THE savior. THE messiah.
Sometimes just seeing that verse with the words moved around a little bit–still saying the same thing, just in a different order–changes the emphasis so much. I was blessed to read that verse that way this morning.