Here we are at the close of another year, and I’m sure that the Lord has blessed us in many ways during 2003. It is at this season that people of all walks of life, believers and atheists alike, will be wishing each other a merry Christmas. So my question is this, “What is it that causes merriment at Christmas?”
A. For some it is the singing of carols. I am one of those people who dislike Christmas carols, since I find that the vast majority do not agree with scripture. Yet the world loves singing these Christmas songs and rhymes. Somehow, it gives them a warm and comforting feeling. Well, it is the season to be jolly isn’t it! This type of joy lasts but for a moment.
B. For most, it’s giving and receiving presents. This is especially true with regards to children. How often people say, “Christmas is for the children.” Of course, it is great to see the smiling faces of children as they open their gifts on Christmas Day, but have we not missed the point of the occasion? Broken toys on Boxing Day prove that real happiness cannot be sustained this way.
C. Then there are others who really get into the spirit of Christmas. I’m not talking about the joy of the Holy Spirit but that which revellers will find in the pubs and off-licences. Christmas parties are arranged many months in advance just so a ‘good time’ will be had by all. As they drive home drunk and out of control, they kill that young child looking forward to opening his or her presents on Christmas Day. So much for the illusion of joy alcohol gives.
D. Only believers understand the significance of Christmas, therefore, only they can experience real happiness. Just like you, I know that our Saviour was not born in December, that Christmas is a Catholic invention, and that most of what happens corresponds more to paganism than Biblical Christianity. Nevertheless, what a fantastic opportunity we have to tell people, inside and outside, the church where true joy is to be found.
There will always be those who will condemn us for bringing Christianity into Christmas. For some reason they perceive that we are trying to ruin their celebrations by preaching Christ as Saviour. Unless I am mistaken His title is found in the word ‘Christmas.’ No wonder Xmas is adopted on cards and in shop windows.
Of all people we should be extremely happy that the Lord Jesus Christ came to this earth, to be born in human flesh, over 2,000 years ago. The angel declared at Christ’s birth, “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10-11). Are we happy enough to tell others about Him? I am not necessarily talking about preaching a Christmas sermon in the pulpit. We are usually preaching to the converted anyway. What about making sure you only send Christmas cards that contain scripture references? Also we could include a good gospel tract or booklet in with the card. I don’t think there would be many who would refuse it at this season. Consider adding “Because of Jesus” (or something similar) to the gift tag. What a wonderful gift if would be to the Lord if someone we know got saved this Christmas just because we took the opportunity to tell them about the reason for the season. This magazine may arrive a little too late for you to add that tract, but there’s always next year.
As believers we do not need the yearly celebration to make us merry. Christ’s gift of salvation brings joy to our souls all year round. We don’t need the booze, glitter or trappings of Christmas to give us true heart peace, because our Lord is a present reality (forgive the intended pun).
“Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart” (Psalm 32:11).