We're all familiar with the growing movement to eliminate the celebration of Christmas. Many stores have barred the expression "Merry Christmas" (visit this site to learn of the "naughty" and "nice" retailers), while a number of schools nationwide have told students they cannot utilize Christmas carols.
In fact, under the order of the ACLU, teachers at a Santa Rosa, Calif., school have been told they may not participate in the "communication with a deity," and may not even bow their heads during a prayer. Read Liberty Counsel's press release on this case.
With Christmas approaching in this age of increasing secularism and moral relativism, I want to propose that Christians everywhere take this season more seriously than ever. We must commit to making this a biblical Christmas and ensuring that those we love understand the foundation of this season was the earthly birth of the sinless, virgin-born Jesus.
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In a Christmas sermon a few years before his death, my father noted, "Most Americans used to think biblically. A businessman thought with biblical principles, our schoolteachers taught biblical principles, our parents used the Bible in training and raising children, and the average layman on the street was well-aware of what the Bible said about Christmas. But most Americans have lost their biblical mind."
Indeed, many people have no concept of what Christmas truly is, nor do they have a clear understanding of who Jesus is and what He came to earth to accomplish.
I believe that Christians, during this time of year especially, need to be about the specific business of speaking of the indisputable fundamentals of the biblical story of Jesus. Let's examine six topics we should be finding ways to talk about during the Christmas season.
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- Jesus was the virgin-born gift to man from heaven. Matthew 1:18 tells us that Mary "was found with child of the Holy Ghost." Charles H. Spurgeon described Jesus this way: "Infinite, and an infant. Eternal, and yet born of a woman. Almighty, and yet hanging on a woman's breast. Supporting a universe, and yet needing to be carried in a mother's arms. King of angels, and yet the reputed son of Joseph. Heir of all things, and yet the carpenter's despised son."
- Jesus' birth was the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. Isaiah 7:14: "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." Jesus was the miraculous completion of the ancient prophecies.
- Jesus had a predestined ministry. Matthew 1:23 tells us, "Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us."
- Jesus was and is the Son of the Living God. In John 10:29, Jesus clearly states, "I and My Father are one." Jesus would spend His time on earth calling people to Himself, the blameless Son of the Living God.
- Jesus was predestined to die on the cross in order to forgive our sins. Paul, writing in 1 Timothy 1:15, states, "… Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief." There was a purpose to His birth on that first Christmas night – to die a horrible death.
- Following His death, Jesus gloriously arose from the tomb, providing the sole avenue to eternal life. In his sermon, "The Gladness of the Risen God," John Piper said, "Jesus blew the lock off the prison of death and gloom and returned to the gladness of God. With that He put His sanction on the pursuit of happiness. And He opened the way for sinners to find never-ending satisfaction at the fountain of the glory of His grace." In John 14:6, we are assured through the selfless act of Christ as He gave Himself for us, we find our only way to the Father.
In this era of biblical illiteracy, I believe these six issues must be at the forefront of our personal ministries. Christmas really needs to become the season of apologetics as we commit to enlightening our fellow man to the true Reason for the Season.
While people around us are concerned about purchasing gifts or planning dinners or decorating their homes, a biblical Christmas needs to be the theme of all Christians as we reclaim this holiday season for the sake of our Lord and Savior who is the very foundation for our celebration.