We don't like to think of commercialism and violence as part of this season. What do we think of when we think Christmas? Christmas trees? Cookies? What is it all about? Gifts? Stockings? Lights? Shopping?
Or maybe it is about this:
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed...And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem...to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. Luke 2:1-8That is Christmas, right? A virgin, a baby, a manger. There were no sparkly trees. No cookies. And no gifts.
Ah, but there was one gift. The baby Himself was the gift.
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16
Jesus. God's gift to us.
God gave his son, and his son was beaten, hated, rejected, spit on, mocked, and killed.
Dale heard that list yesterday during the sermon and, using his favorite phrase in his best attempt to sound grown-up, whispered to me, "Why in the world did God do that?"
My whispered answer to him is the same to you:
He did it because he loves you.
As our pastor said yesterday, if you asked Jesus the true meaning of Christmas, he would probably say it is less about the baby in the manger, and more about the love of the Father, and his Gift to the world. His gift to me. His gift to you.
Have you humbled yourself to repent and trust in Him?
|"Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift." |
2 Corinthians 9:15