And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
Many have scoffed and ridiculed this series of articles as unneeded and so forth. But on December 24, 2013 Fox News was broadcasting a documentary [sic] called The Nativity. I caught a bit of this program after returning home from our church service.
There on the most widely watched cable news channel stood a Lady talking head explaining how December 25 could not be the birthday of Jesus as it was in December. She continued on how December 25 is in the middle of the winter and the shepherds would not be able to withstand the "frigid" conditions.
Please note: according to the weather channel the ACTUAL temperatures this year show the foolishness of this statement by Fox's expert [sic] talking head:
December 24: High 70, Low 43
December 25: High 70. Low 46
December 26: High 75, Low 48
There has not been a recorded temperature below freezing in the Month of December in 2013 in Jerusalem, Israel! These temperature reading are at an elevation of over 2,000 ft and will be colder than where the shepherds would have tending their flocks.
The truth is that the historical records show that the average lows in Jerusalem are almost identical to Lake City, Florida. I would invite any and all that believe that December in Jerusalem is "frigid" to visit the modern day Battle of Olustee, just outside Lake City, Florida in February. Here you will see re-enactors living for the weekend in much the same manner as shepherds would have in the time of Jesus. February in Lake City is colder than December in Jerusalem.
These statements about being too cold are made for the purpose of discrediting Christianity. Those who make them have spent less than five minutes researching the historical data! That is how long it takes to access the Weather Channel historical data for Jerusalem, Israel! So these false claims are not the result of an actual investigation or research!
No, the Bible does not tell us that Jesus was born on December 25. The Bible does not tell us what day Jesus was born.
But that does not justify deception: nor remaining silent when you hear deception. This talking head was spreading deception!
But the Bible does tell us in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 that as we approach the end of the age there will be a falling away. Falling away means --- departure from the truth. The Bible does tell us there will be deception, those who will try to mislead and discredit.
The Bible also tells us that many have ears but do not hear, have eyes and do not see.
Jude 1:18 KJV
How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.
2 Pet 3:3 KJV
Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
MYTH: Too cold for shepherds to Tend Flocks in December (Part 2)
What is the average temperature around Bethlehem in December?
Remember, Bethlehem is a few miles south of Jerusalem at about 2,500 feet which is the same as Jerusalem. The flocks would have been tended more in the valley than at the top of the mount, so the temperatures faced by the shepherds would have been warmer than either recorded in Jerusalem or those that Jacob experienced.
With very little effort this information is easily available. The Weather Channel website provides the recorded average low temperature by month for many locations, including Jerusalem. In fact it will compare the average lows per month between two locations. Doing a little research with this tool gives an interesting comparison between Lake City, Florida and Jerusalem, Israel (Click here and then select Avg Low option).
As you will see from either using the link or from the image at the right, the December temperature in Jerusalem is two degrees cooler than Lake City Florida; 42 vs. 44 degress. The same is true for Jacksonville, Florida. However the average low temperature for Valdosta, Georgia and Albany, Georgia are a degree or two cooler than Jerusalem. So the average December low temperature in Jerusalem (at the top of the mount) is the equilvalent of extreme south Georgia or extreme north Florida. Not exactly Arctic conditions so to speak.
And that is at the top of the mount in Jerusalem and the valleys where the sheep would be tended would be warmer. So the average December temperatures that the shepherds would have faced would be warmer than Lake City, Florida.
Anyone who has ever been around Lake City, Florida can tell you. December winters in the area are rather mild, while there may be a few nights with a freeze or frost, they are NOT severe. Certainly the hardy people of the Biblical times would have been capable of facing this rather mild climate! Jacob certainly was.
So the statement that it is too cold in December for the shepherds to be tending their flocks is incorrect!
Most of the people who make the claim that it is too cold for shepherds to be in the fields with their flocks have never tended sheep (or goats). Some information on sheep herding and care for sheep will verify that once again that this is a false claim.