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August 8, 2019

The birth of Immanuel (known as "Jesus", "Jesus Christ", "Christ" to most of the world) occurred in the month of August instead of December, more specifically on August 8. Earthman's entire account of the birth, life and ministry of Immanuel (also spelled Jmmanuel, Emmanuel) is in error. The birth date being perhaps the least impactful of these errors, nevertheless, is a logical place to start in the righting of history.

The birth of Esu Immanuel occurred during the reign of Caesar Augustus (born Gaius Octavius Thurinus), the adopted son of Julius Caesar. Augustus reigned as first Roman emperor from 27 B.C. to 14 A.D. The word, "Augustus" comes from the Latin word augustus, meaning "consecrated" or "venerable". Augustus was born on September 27, 63 B.C. In 8 B.C. the Roman Senate honored Augustus Caesar by changing the name of their month "Sextilis" (September) to "Augustus." (August). Middle English speakers inherited the name of the month of August, but it wasn't until the mid-1600s that "august" came to be used in English.

The Julian calendar was introduced by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C. The month of "Julii" (July), formerly Quintilis, was renamed in 44 B.C. to honor Julius Caesar, who was born in that month. It was through poor record keeping between both the Julian Calendar and the Gregorian Calendar up to the year 300 A.D. that caused errors amounting to a loss of 8 years. Thus, what we think of as year 1 B.C. was actually 8 B.C.

In the same month and year that Immanuel was born, a census was decreed by Caesar Augustus, of all Roman-held territories at that time for the purpose of collecting taxes on his subjects (See: Luke 2: 1-5). Wanting his census to be a great success, Caesar chose a warm month that would not interfere with the planting or harvest season, as many of the people were farmers. So, Caesar chose the month of Augustus (August) in which to conduct his census, which also coincided with the month of his namesake.  Therefore, it was the month of August, not December, that Mary and Joseph traveled to a Judean city of David named Bethlehem (in fulfillment of the prophecy of Micah 5:2), to be counted in the census of Caesar Augustus, and there, on the 8th of August, 8 B.C. Immanuel (which interpreted means: "THE GOD WITH US") was born.

Why December 25th was selected by the church to be the date celebrated as Immanuel's birth date is a discussion for another time.


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