The cartoon above came to my attention via Daily Kos. Brice Jones recently wrote a blog post about Stephen Carlson’s argument regarding the mistranslation “inn” in Luke’s infancy narrative. That in turn builds on the case that Kenneth Bailey has made regarding the cultural background of that story.On the one hand, the traditional versions of the Christmas stories – both those in Matthew and Luke – can be useful in addressing issues like refugees and hospitality. On the other hand, we should not make the usefulness of stories in addressing contemporary issues a factor in assessing their historicity. Neither Matthew’s story nor Luke’s is likely to include genuine historical information.
But that doesn’t necessarily have to spoil a good cartoon or meme.
Of related interest, see Benjamin Perry’s article on the huge gulf between what the Bible says, and what GOP candidates say, about refugees.