There are many ways to present Christmas. Academically the word Christmas is a compound word derived from Christ and Mass or worship. So Christmas is the worship or Thanksgiving of Christ’s birth. His birth as both God and man. See Jesus Christ had to be true humanity in God’s system in order to be a substitute for us in God’s forgiveness of our sins so that God could have a relationship with mankind. As you know from my previous chapters, God cannot have a relationship with sin or sinful man, so God has to find a way to have a relationship with us and that He did by transferring all our sins from us individually to Jesus Christ on the cross, but what I want to discuss and inform you about is Christmas. Christ’s substitutionary death on the cross for our sins is an Easter message and discussion.
So what is Christmas? It is first in the story of God’s plan to forgive us our sins. So first, Christ has to be born a human being. Recall Jesus Christ are two names. Jesus is His human name and Christ is His title for divine (deity) savior. So Jesus (humanity) Christ (deity) is two people (God and man) in one person.
Christmas celebrates (mass) the birth of this God-man, Jesus Christ.
So let me talk about this event in human history from our human Christmas tradition perspective, weeding out the way it is celebrated today from a humanistic perspective and explain the basis for our tradition of Christmas.
Christmas started with God giving us a gift. So as with any gift that is gift wrapped what do we do? We unwrap it.
So with God’s gift we are to individually unwrap it.
Usually we first read the gift card that is attached to the gift and we see it is from God the Father. So we know whom to thank and we can appreciate what He has done for us in giving us this gift.
Next we remove the wrapping paper, either carefully or rip it apart in excitement.
We then see a box and we open the box.
In that box we see multiple items.
In that box we have a plan for our entire life. The Plan of God – logistics for living every day life (food, water, shelter, and clothing) and the spiritual information we need to ‘see’ and learn about God and His plan, resources and instructions for living our lives. So everything we need for our physical existence and spiritual growth.
The spiritual information, the resources and instructions for living our lives, enable us to learn about God and His system of living our lives. A relaxed life, able to handle the adversities, pressures and prosperities that come our way. To be content in all that we have.
This spiritual information God gave to all of us is the bible, His written communication to us to understand His thinking and the tools needed – promises, procedures and instructions – to live our lives. His love letter to us, the bible. Not a novel per se but a textbook that a properly trained Pastor-Teacher can teach us about. Also as part of His plan, God gives us time to learn and to exercise His plan for us during our lifetime (long or short).
In the bible is the person and the work of Jesus Christ. Another part of our Christmas present. The one who communicated via His written word, the bible, and whose examples we are to follow. The entire bible is Jesus Christ’s thinking, God’s complete thought for what mankind needs to know to execute God’s plan for your life.
In the Gospels we have to story of Jesus, the Life of Christ, presented to us. From His birth that we celebrate on Christmas Day, to him growing up and then starting His ministry, eventually leading to His spiritual death on the cross, followed by his physical death, burial, resurrection and ascension.
It is during His earthly ministry, a little more than 3 years, that we have a prototype of the life we need to live, not as an itinerant minister (thought a few many be called to do that) but as ordinary human being, growing up physically, developing mentally, living our lives using His thinking and the mechanics or resources He provides to be relaxed, to love, to reflect His graciousness and compassion and to reflect His thinking vs. the worlds thinking. To be ambassadors to this lost and corrupt world in whatever profession or life we choose to live.
In the Old Testament of the bible, we have examples for us and in the New Testament Epistles we have further elaborations of what Jesus taught us in the gospels.
But the center is Jesus Christ, His birth (that we celebrate on Christmas) and His life.
That is what is in the gift God gives to everyone of us on Christmas.
Some of us have opened this gift and are learning to utilize all that God has provided.
Others have not opened the gift, or have rejected God’s gift.
Others still have opened it and chose to not fully utilize everything God have given then.
That’s our choice. We can accept or reject the gift. But God still gives us this gift. Each of us are given that choice and have equal opportunity (including the time) to fully utilize God’s gift to us.
So Christmas is the time to reflect on God’s gift to us. To celebrate the birth of our savior Jesus Christ. To think about His life and what He has provided for us, especially the spiritual life we are to learn and apply. To marvel at the love God has for us and all that God had to do to provide it to us in every period of human history.
God’s gift, Jesus Christ, was born to save us – save us from a lifetime of heartache and struggle and to enable us to spend eternity with Him in heaven vs. the Lake of Fire for eternity.
So when you give a gift at Christmas to someone that you love, that is styled after or is a representative analogy, of God’s perfect Christmas gift to you. You give a gift in love and you want it to be useful to the one you give it to, so too God’s gift to us. It is a perfect gift, giving us everything we need to have a relationship with God while on this earth and for eternity with God in heaven.
So when you open or give a Christmas gift, think of God’s perfect gift He has given to us. That is the tradition we celebrate on Christmas Day. The day God gives us His perfect son, Jesus Christ, as an example to live our lives and as the sacrifice so we can have a relationship with God forever.
God’s gift, His love gift to each and every one of us. This is what we celebrate on Christmas Day.
Merry Christmas. Happy Birthday Jesus and thank you God the Father for your indescribable gift.