For many people, these verses from Luke are the Christmas story. Significant in this passage is the care Luke takes to tell us that Jesus’ coming is, in the angel’s words, “good news of great joy for all the people” (v. 10). The Greek laos means people in general; adding the adjective “all” intensifies the gospel’s universality. The savior of the world comes not to princes, but to disreputable shepherds. He is born not in a palace, but in a stable. Over against the universal tendency of human governments to form hierarchies and favor special-interest groups, God’s new order is truly egalitarian.
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