At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. (This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.) All returned to their own ancestral towns to register for this census. And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee. He took with him Mary, his fiancée, who was now obviously pregnant.
And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them. Luke 2:1-7
Even before He was born, Jesus made a long, hazardous journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem.
The distance is 80 miles, which would take about an hour and a half by car today. Back then the mode of transportation was a bit slower – walking, donkey, or horse.
It is very likely they walked but Mary may have also ridden a donkey.
Still the journey could have taken 4 or 5 days.
Many others would have also traveled the same route or join the couple on the road from other areas in the countryside.
It is supposed that Jesus was born on a Feast day, perhaps Sukkot – Feast of Tabernacles.
The city of Bethlehem was crowded with other vistors because of the census.
The inn was full; not a room to spare and the best the innkeeper could do was a stable.
It would not have been unusual for either Joseph or Mary to have stayed in a homemade booth or tabernacle during this time, if indeed it was the Festival.
The fact is in spite of all of the difficulty, Mary endured the hardships to bring the Savior to the world. She endure the length of the trip. She endure the crowds. She endured the stable. She endure giving birth in a less than perfect environment.
She endured it all so Messiah could be born.
What difficulties and hardships will you endure to bring the Savior to someone else?