What’s Wrong with This Picture of the Nativity Scene? [Take The Quiz]

Put your Bible knowledge to the test by taking this short quiz about the nativity scene. Some elements of the traditional nativity scene are accurate, and others are not. Let's see how well you do in our nativity scene quiz!

What’s Wrong with This Picture of the Nativity Scene? Take the Nativity Scene Quiz today!


Most of us don’t spend much time, if any, in the Scriptures. We take other peoples’ word for it and don’t seek the Truth for ourselves. Jesus’ birth story and the nativity scene stands alone as the most significant event of all time – together with His life, death, and resurrection. He is our salvation and deliverer which is the very meaning of His God-given name, Jesus. The whole counsel of His word is life’s manual for His disciples.

Related Post: Find the Merry in Your Messy

Christmas, for many of us, is the time to remember and celebrate Jesus’ birth. A practical way that many of us do this is by displaying a nativity scene in our homes. Many people, Christian and non-Christian, have the nativity scene on display during the holiday season. It’s become more of a tradition than anything else. Let’s look at the definition.

What does a nativity scene symbolize?

The Christian nativity scene or Christmas nativity scene symbolizes the day that Jesus was born. (Christmas is the celebration of Jesus’ birth) Jesus represents the introduction of grace to the world. Ultimately, he was born of man, lived a perfect life without sin or fault, then was killed, which ultimately lead to the freedom of all. I’ll go into more detail, explaining what the nativity scene is below.

What is a nativity scene?

The nativity scene is a set of figures displayed at Christmas as an artistic representation of the birth of Jesus Christ. Traditionally the nativity scene presents figures of the infant Jesus, his mother, Mary, and her husband, Joseph. Other characters from the nativity story, such as shepherds, sheep, and angels may be displayed near the manger in a barn intended to accommodate farm animals, as described in the Gospel of Luke.

But, is that accurate? No. Without a doubt, Christmas and the nativity scene has dubious origins.


It’s important to note that we are not saying you shouldn’t have or display a nativity scene. We love it! But it’s important to know that it’s not 100% accurate. Knowing and understanding the Bible for ourselves is an essential part of the Christian faith.

Judy Sanfilippo, one of our authors, created this ten question quiz about the nativity scene and its accuracy, which is made to be both fun and informative for our readers. So, are you ready to take the quiz? Click here to get started!

  • STATS FROM CHRISTMAS 2018: 300 people took the quiz and less than 30% of people answered 50% or more of the questions correctly.
  • STATS FROM CHRISTMAS 2019: 500+ people took the quiz and less than 5% of people answered all of the questions correctly.

In concluding this blog post, we hope that you’ll take the quiz! It’s a fun way to end what has been a tough year for many people. We encourage you to share this with people you know. It’s both a fun and educational way to share the true meaning of Christmas with friends and family. Enjoy the quiz!!!

Question from Alex Sanfilippo, the author.

How did you do on this Nativity Scene Quiz? Share your score below!

Written by Alex Sanfilippo

My mission is to live a life honorable in every way to God my father. I am passionate about building disciples and strengthening the church. My daily goal is to be a positive influence on the people around me and to make the world a better place.

10 thoughts on “What’s Wrong with This Picture of the Nativity Scene? [Take The Quiz]

  1. For some of your questions a choice between yes or no is insufficient. If each question began with, “Does the Bible say that …” your answers are right. But though for example the Bible does not say whether Mary came on a donkey and the wise men came on camels it is still possible that this may be true. The Bible does not give a yes or a no to these questions. It is clear that the wise men arrived after the days of Mary’s purification were completed and probably well under the two years that Herod decided upon for the age under which Bethlehem’s baby boys were to be killed. Nativity scenes which depict the shepherds at the manger and the wise men on their way are artistic representations in a single picture of a series of events and can mislead. But it is a big loss that those who still believe would dispense with nativity scenes and leave Christmas devoid of these images that seek to remind us of the actual events associated with the birth of Christ.

    1. Love your response, Mr. Holmes. I agree. And yes, I missed the two questions about traveling; would’ve gotten 80% correct if not for those questions

  2. Great quiz. I had to think very carefully about the wording of each question. There are a lot of things that have been condensed into one, single event that actually happened over time. It is like a novel that is turned into a film, and in the film everything looks like it happened immediately, but in the book it happened over several months.

    1. Yes, I thought about this too! But it’s quite common in medieval and pre-modern art to collapse a longer time frame into a single visual frame, condensing the narrative. Which doesn’t mean the nativity scene is wrong or even inaccurate, just that it uses different conventions. And then of course, there are traditional beliefs such as the presence of the ox and ass which may or may not have been historically accurate, but over time have been imbued with symbolism to represent certain things.

  3. Saint Francis of Assisi is credited to have made the first manger scene so he could educate his parishioners and fellow citizens about the birth of Jesus.

  4. Pingback: The True Meaning of Christmas [The Birth of Jesus]
  5. not sure how you come to the conclusion that Luke 2:7 – “… Laid him in a manger because there was no place for them in the inn” (NRSV) means anything other than that there was no room for them in the inn. What was the trick to that question?

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