So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
- Luke 2:6-7
Luke always loves to present moral features. Accordingly there is an intimation very instructive for us in the circumstance that it was in the manger Jesus was laid, not in the inn. There was no room for them in the inn. The Lord of glory, when born into this world, was laid in the manger.
What a picture of the state of the world! There was no room in the world for Him who was God! The children of men according to their means found their place in the inn as it suited them. Those who had money could command a place proportioned to what they were willing to pay. But the parents of the Lord were in such poverty as to be thoroughly despised at the inn, and the only place where they could find a shelter for the Babe was a manger.
But this did not hinder the outflow of divine grace any more than it could deny (except to unbelief) the divine glory of Him who was laid there. Unbelief never accepts that the Lord of heaven and earth could be born in such circumstances and of such parents. In fact, to be born at all, to be really a man, to know beyond all other men the bitterness of the world, the scorn and hatred of men, and finally the cross--all this is utterly stumbling to unbelief.
But this is just the truth of God, and the only truth that really makes God known and delivers man. Those who receive it are the simple. Grace makes them such, especially the lowly. It can make the proudest simple, no doubt; but it addresses itself in particular, as a rule (and Luke marks the fact), to those that are despised on the earth as Christ was.