We clearly hear that God's answer to our spiritual blindness and self-centered perspective appears in our world as the child of an obscure descendant of King David. He is celebrated by an older cousin who also bears a son, who will announce the arrival of God's promised Savior.
We who describe ourselves as “God's sheep” should remember there is some “goat” in us all. Our calling is not to become superior to others but to be loving, like our Savior. That involves a lifetime of learning and growing.
How did Solomon's splendid temple and the key worship practices of Israel fade from their culture? Gradually – through indifference, preoccupation, or fading memories of the past – the people replaced faith in God with the common goals of the world.