The entire story of Jesus being born in a stable may be based on a misreading of the New Testament, claims an evangelical scholar, adding that he was not, in fact, born there.
Rev Ian Paul recently took to his blog claiming that Jesus wasn't born in a stable, and, curiously, the New Testament hardly even hints that this might have been the case, the Guardian reported.
AdvertisementPaul, who is a theologian and former Dean of Studies at St John's theological college, Nottingham, said that Greek word, kataluma, usually translated as "Inn" was in fact used for a reception room in a private house - the same term is used to describe the "upper room" where Jesus and his disciples ate the last supper.
He also said that an entirely different word, pandocheion, is used to describe an "Inn" or any other place where strangers are welcomed and even if there were an inn in Bethlehem, arguing that Joseph and Mary would not have been staying there and that the only reason for them to travel to Bethlehem for the census was because he had family there and if he did the customs of first-century Palestine required him to stay with relatives and not with strangers.
In that context, the kataluma where he stayed would not have been an Inn, but a guest room in the house of the family where Joseph and Mary were staying. That could very well have been full with other relatives who had arrived before them.
Paul added that what is extraordinary about the birth of Jesus is that it shows God shifting from the divine to the human and also shows the descent was from a respected human to a disrespected human.