A dark-skinned baby boy, from the tribe of Judah, was born in Palestine 2000 years ago, to save the world. Many in that clan were people of color; also, the Romans [Gentiles] had not converted to Christianity or Judaism at that time.
“The Black Nazarene is a dark-skinned depiction of Jesus, which has been worshiped for 400 years." Catholic Church. There are pictures of these scenes in museums in Russia and Poland. It is named the” Black Madonna of Czestochowa.” St. Luke himself painted this portrait.
The region of Palestine was divided into three areas; they were Galilee, Samaria, and Jude.It was called Israel under David and Solomon’s rule. Jesus was born in Bethlehem a city in Judea, during the time of King Herod (Mathew 2:1).
Jesus family left the city shortly after his birth because Herod wanted to have him killed. This is confirmed on the record about the visit of the wise men. They came some time after the birth of Jesus to Jerusalem and traveled from there to Bethlehem, where they found the child in "a house” (Mathew 2:1-12).
The word for "child" used here in the Greek text, paidion, does not refer to a newborn baby (as does the word brephos used in Luke 2:12); this also indicates that the wise men did not come to the house immediately after the shepherds.”
Birth of Jesus
The visit of the wise men, was only a relatively short time, before the death of King Herod, and from the mention that Herod sought to kill all male children of an age "two years and under" it can be concluded that Jesus was no longer a newborn baby.
After the visit of the wise men, the family departed into Egypt in obedience to the instruction given by the angel where they remained until after the death of Herod. They must have been a family of color to blend in there. They returned to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, where Jesus grew up. Joseph, Moses, and Paul mistaken also for Egyptians (cf. Genesis 42:3-8 and Acts: 23-3).
In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you."
Tribe of Judah
In the book of Revelation, Christ is named the Lion of Judah and the Root of David as a reference to both his family lineage and his victory. There were 12 tribes of Israel. Jesus genealogy comes from this tribe. David and Solomon also came from this tribe.
The Tribe of Judah, which is the folk that Jesus descended from, was a Black Tribe of Hebrews. Historian Wilson Armistead states quite plainly: “The descendants of a colony of Jews, originally from Judea, settled on the coast of Africa, are black.” (A Tribute for the Negro: Being a Vindication of the Moral, Intellectual, and Religious Capabilities of the Colored Portion of Mankind; with Reference to the African Race by Wilson Armistead. Manchester and London: W. Irwin, 1848, pg. 66)
‘Judah was the largest Israelite tribe to leave Egypt, which means that of the mixed multitude that left with Moses. Judah was the tribe that was more mixed. Judah married two different Canaanite women. Judah had five children between these two women.
All of Judah’s children were Black. Judah married Shua, a Canaanite woman. She bore Juda three sons: Er, Onan, and Shelah. When Judah selected a wife for his eldest son Er, he once again chose a Canaanite woman, Tamar. What also needs to be taken into consideration is that out of the 12 tribes of Hebrews that left Egypt, Judah was the largest tribe. There were over 74,000 people in the Tribe of Judah,’ says Irwin.
The original Canaanites were Black. Here are the original children of Canaan, the descendants of Ham. Ham is said to be the father of all black and brown people.
These people are related to the earliest inhabitants of the land of Israel. They are the Natufians, the Cushites and the Canaanites who lived on the land even before Abraham came as an immigrant to the land (cf. Genesis 10 and Numbers 34).
Another interpretation of the connection to the lion comes from medieval literature, which suggests that the lion represents resurrection. The literature goes on to suggest that a lion cub is brought to life on the third day after its birth by its father.
The book of Hebrews uses this very issue to make a point of the fact that, in coming from the tribe of Judah, our Lord's new high-priesthood signals a change from the Old to the New Covenant. Since of course, in accordance with the Mosaic Law, all prior priests have come from the tribe of Levi (see especially Heb. Chap. 7-8).
One important reason for the selection of the tribe of Judah, for our Lord's genealogy, the membership of David in that tribe. Jesus, of course, is David's greater Son, and in the mentions of our Lord's lineage it is usually His descent from David that is the point which is emphasized rather His tribal affiliation per se (e.g., Matt.1:1; 9:27; 22:42; Lk.1:32; 1:69; Rom.1:3; 2Tim.2:8; Rev.22:16; cf. also Rev.5:5 where "from the tribe of Judah" is immediately reinforced by "[from] the root of David"). For Jesus is the "Son of David", the One who fulfills the covenant to that great believer wherein he was promised a Son who would reign forever. [G8]
‘Throughout the New Testament, the reader is constantly made aware of the fact that Jesus has come into this world in fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. No more dramatic example of this can be found than that of Isaiah chapter 53. In this portion of scripture, the prophet vividly describes how the messiah will come as the suffering servant and lamb of God to bear the sins of the people.
In the book of Acts Philip, the evangelist has occasion to meet with a court official of Ethiopia who was in Jerusalem to worship. This man was reading from Isaiah 53:7-8; but did not understand of whom this portion of scripture was speaking.
Philip explained to the man that it referred to Jesus and starting there Philip continued to preach the good news about Jesus to him (Acts 8:26-40). Consider the words of the prophet Isaiah which describe the suffering of Jesus for the sins and iniquities of others.’ God for Us
O holy night!
The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth!
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary soul rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!
Fall on your knees
Oh hear the angel voices
Oh night divine
Oh night when Christ was born
Oh night divine
Oh night divine
Esco Yancey, Jr. Ed.D. © 2016