That perhaps it's even written in the stars, so that even the innocently supersticious men of old would not be left without a means of knowing?
thank you for taking up this post and answering to it.
There is a book out by E.W.Bullinger called "The Witness of the Stars". The author uses ancient astronomical sources to show how the constellations witness to the accuracy of Biblical prophetic truths. ISBN 0-8254-2245-0 This book glorifies God
(E.W.Bullinger, an Anglican clergyman, is a descendant of J.Heinrich Bullinger, the Swiss reformer http://www.fact-index.com/h/he/heinrich_bullinger.html/
. He wrote the footnotes and Appendices http://www.levendwater.org/companion/frameset.htm?index.html&inhoudsopgave.htm
to the Companion Bible)
In this book he says the "Virgo is the only point where we can intelligently begin", and then he presents all the constellations with such amazing details and how they exactly do what you say. They 'tell the story' for all to see.
Virgo consists of three constellations. According to this book the first constellation in Virgo is called COMA (The Woman and child). It explains that the coming "Branch" (one particular star in Virgo) will be a child, and that he should be "the desire of all nations'.
The ancient name of this constellation is Comah, "the desired or the longed for". We have the word in Hag.2:7.
the ancient Zodiacs pictured this constellation as a woman with a child in her arms. Albumazar, an Arabian astronomer of the 8th century, says, "there arises ...a young woman, whose Persian name denotes a pure virgin, sitting on a throne, nourishing an infant boy, who has a Hebrew name by some nations called IHESU, with the signification IEZA, which in Greek is called CHRISTOS." But bullinger goes on to say that we do not find this picture in any modern maps of the stars, and that there has been a lot of ignorantly or intentionally perverting of the constellations, and in transition from ancient to more modern languages many a meaning got lost or was hidden. In the above case, for instance, the Hebrew name was COMA 'desired'. But the Greeks had a word for hair, Co-me. This again is transferred to the Latin coma, and thus "Coma Berenicae" (the hair of Berenice) comes down to us today as the name of this constellation, and gives us a woman's wig instead of that Blessed One, "The Desire of all Nations".
So far my abbreviated quote. But this Book is a revelation. I don't see in it the mention of Christmas, but the chapter about the sign Sagittarius has the under title The Redeemer's Triumph. And it is explained beautifully and kind of culminates with the preview of "The dragon shalt thou trample under foot".
Augustine, thank you for your thought which reminded me of this book. It definitely brings back the right perspective and reconciles with the truth reflected in our orthodox Church year.
As for the explanations in that messianic article about the calculating of the dates of birth for the Forerunner and Jesus Christ, I don't see anything objectible in it. Do you?
My apology to all who might have been offended by the post. There certainly is no offense meant. I'm simply trying to understand things better, and Augustine, you always have a way to inspire
edited for correction of URL