It is easy to speak of the things of God when a heart is saturated with His goodness, but it is also easier at this time of the year when hearts are a little softer, and opportunities are presented at every corner.
‘Merry Christmas,’ is a harmless statement, and usually well received; even the atheist says; ‘you too,’ just out of courtesy, and without stealing his right of unbelief. It is a social comment understood in the spirit of the year, and many folks who hate Christmas make a big to-do over nothing.
Heck, look at the religion of the Super Bowl; people who have no interest in football do not start a crusade against this annual event. They simply dismiss it and go about their business. And rightly so.
While it may be easy to speak of the birth of Christ, I submit it is much harder to carry the thought all the way to Golgotha’s hill, and engage a person with the truth that ‘Christ died for our sins, according to the scriptures.’
The doctrine of the death of the son of God necessarily includes the condition of man before a holy God; and who wants to hear and believe that in man, ‘dwelleth no good thing?’ The babe in the manger is admired, but truth be told, Bethlehem was a mere fragment in the accomplishments of the Lamb of God.
‘Joy to the world, the Lord has come,’ certainly true, but ‘let earth receive her king,’ was fulfilled in death, not in birth. At Calvary, no man present to give thanks, so the ‘rocks cried out,’ a word fitting for the earth taking another through death, and not just another sinner, but a sinless One. Oh how nature testifies!
When we speak to friend and neighbor, let’s include (as well as we are able) the truth that Christ did not die for a good man; He did not die to make a good man better. He died to make a dead man alive. Yes, in this new life there is innate goodness, but even a moral person can be good.
Fortunately, morality is not spirituality, and a corpse does not need a new suit of clothes. He needs life, and Christ is the Life. He is the resurrection and the Life.
Did you ever think about the Christmas tree as the cross of Calvary? Cursed is every man that hangeth on a tree? The cross is foolishness according to God, but that tree that held the son of God had no lighting such as we know. But He who was and still is the light of the world lost nothing of His lustre through death.
To a soul appreciative of grace, our lit evergreens point forward to not only the place of the skull, but to heaven itself, where this One named Immanel, sits on the right hand of God.
Bethlehem? Yes, the ‘house of bread’ is as important as ever, but the story does not end at the manger. This young babe lived a life of perfection, testified as to the purposes of God, gave faith to the faithless, hope to the hopeless, rebuked the religious, encouraged his own, relieved the afflicted, promised a future, and died a death to make misfits perfect before God, this the Lord Jesus Christ, whose name is Wonderful,