CHRISTMAS AND IT'S MEANING
by Glen Sage
Christmas has an ever-changing meaning in our lives. During times of war, it often meant a longing for peace on earth and good will to men. It also meant that their longing for home at Christmas would become a reality. For children it holds the promise of that special gift they may have been longing for a number of months. At the core of the meaning of Christmas for Christians is the message of Christmas from the Bible.
One of the favorite accounts of this message is captured in Luke 2:1-5, "And it came to pass in those days that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the Roman world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 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 Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David) 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."
This passage of scripture is often viewed as the beginning of it all. This is the story of Christ's birth but not the beginning of it all. In the book of Revelation is the declaration that Jesus was "the lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world." This shows that the plan that would redeem humanity was laid prior to the creation of the world. Some of the earliest examples of this plan are set forth in the early pages of Genesis in the form of "Holy Types" and symbols. These promises ares continued throughout the Old Testament. They are picked up anew in clear and forthright language in the beginning and throughout the New Testament.
These writings show us the great and boundless love that God has directed to humanity in providing a way of salvation. This plan is "so simple that a wayfaring man though a fool need not error therein." This plan is both simple and all encompassing. "That he is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to the knowledge of the truth."
God has not only declared but has demonstrated to us the meaning of Christmas by his great gift to us. Will your celebration of this glorious day demonstrate the manifestation of God's love revealed in your life?