555 Difficult Bible Questions Answered

204. Was Christ Born in the Year 1 or in 5 B.C?

As we are told in the Gospels that Herod was living and slaughtered the children after Jesus was born (see Matt 2:16), and as it is claimed by chronologists to be a matter of record that he died in 750 U. C., which corresponds to B. C. 4, it is obvious that Jesus was born before that date. Then, on the other hand, he was born after the decree for the census (Luke 2:1) was issued. From Tertullian we learn that the decree was issued in 748 and the enrollment began in 749 U. G, which corresponds to B. C. 5. Thus the birth is fixed by those two occurrences.