[buzzsprout episode=”37947″ player=”true”]
Today I’m going to finish our Christmas devotional. I really appreciate you following along with me. Without the decorations that adorn our Christmas trees, they would just be another pine tree. But because of the decorations, they are Christmas trees.
Without the decorations of love, grace, peace and forgiveness, the cross of Calvary would be no different from any other cross that was used to crucify criminals. But because of the person who hung on the cross and what He did for all mankind, it can change your life forever.
Many people today are satisfied to celebrate Christmas as long as Jesus remains a baby in a manger.
In an Orange County Register article titled, “Bloody Jesus In Parade Outrages Townsfolk,” it describes how a church in Illinois entered a float in their town’s Christmas parade and many were outraged because of the point it illustrated. The float featured a young man depicting the crucifixion of Jesus wearing a loin cloth and blood-like makeup all over his face and body. The pastor of the church stated, “We weren’t out there trying to stir controversy. We were out there trying to identify the whole meaning of Christmas, and the ultimate meaning is Jesus did give His life, God gave a gift.” The pastor went on to say that no one had made any complaints about the float to him or his church, but the parade coordinator said she had received plenty of complaints and stated, “I’m not saying this was an inappropriate float, but it certainly was perceived that way by a lot of people.”
If Jesus had not died on the cross of Calvary to provide love, grace, peace and forgiveness, Christmas would be meaningless. Even Christians can miss the point of the Christmas story if they aren’t careful.
The great question for us is this: Is our Christmas still only a story about a baby, or is it more, a story about a Person into whom the baby grew, who can redeem the world from it’s sins, and who calls us to have a relationship with Him.
It is only as we see the birth of Jesus in light of His crucifixion and resurrection that we are able to grasp the full meaning of Christ’s coming. If Jesus had not died on the cross and rose again, he would have been just one out of billions upon billions of babies who have ever been born. But because he died and rose from the dead, he is much more than just an ordinary child or person.
With your eyes wide open this Christmas, respond to God with love and commitment for the gift of His Son. Focus your thoughts and actions and motivations toward honoring the Baby who grew up and died for all our sins.
After all, on that first Christmas the angel did not declare, “Christ the baby is born” but rather the angel said, “Christ the Savior is born!” Jesus went from the cradle to the cross.
Thank you for following this Christmas blog and listening. I pray that you will have a wonderful Christmas this year. May God bless you.