The Theommentary blog had some great Christmas links including one about a little astrological phenomenon known as the star of Bethlehem. Pretty fascinating.
I had heard before that there was a confluence of Venus with Jupiter (the King planet) in Leo (the lion of Judah) in 2 or 4 BC or something like that, and even preached about it one Christmas. This article has it happening in Aries (the ram of Judah?), so I'm not sure where the descrepency is. I'm no astrologer. But the magi were, and amazingly, that's how they found the Christ child. How's that for natural theology?
Even more interestingly however, as Christmas approaches, is this article by Philip Yancey, called "Ongoing Incarnation: Would Christmas have come even if we had not sinned?" I think it is a must-read, and by the way I'm totally with Duns Scotus on this one.
I think Christmas happens, Fall or no Fall. Otherwise we have something like felix culpa (fortunate fall) going on, and that makes little sense to me. From the foundation of the world we were always going to have fellowship with God through the God-man, Jesus Christ. As James Torrance put it:
"Christ took what was ours that he might give us what is his."
Gloria in exelsis deo.
Happy Incarnation Day folks.
The peace of Christ be with you.