Christmas is a season of spiritual reflection on the foundations of the Christian faith. It’s also a celebration of the arrival of Jesus. Christmas is a time for Christians to praise God’s love for the world through the birth of the Christ child: Jesus. The Bible tells of His birth hundreds of years before, fulfilling prophecies from the Old Testament.
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6).
Lets examine the Christmas story:
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the 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 Judaea, 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.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, 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. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord;…. And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. (Luke 2:22; 25)
And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ….And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law,Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, (Luke 2:26; 28-30)
As I think about these scriptures I am reminded that Christmas is a time of much more than just familial love. It is a “love story” the love a great God and King had for the world. For doesn’t the scripture say “God so loved the world that he sent his only Son that whomsoever believes in him should not perish.”
We celebrate gifts but in all the hustle and bustle of this season we can miss the greatest gift of all that was given. That is Jesus Christ. Simeon in Luke chapter two saw the Divine Essence
He saw what was happening declaring “For mine eyes have seen thy salvation..” We must remember that the true meaning for Christmas is not gifts although those are great, its not a tree no matter how beautiful, its not the lights no matter how bright, it is a the gift the shepherds said, “Let us go unto Bethlehem and see this thing which is come to pass.”
See God’s gift of His Son was a gift of “good tidings” that according to the word of God sets the sinner free and brings “salvation” to all who will accept it his precious son.