Out of the Abundance of the Heart

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Building People of Substance for Works of Power

The war on Christmas is over and He won.

Merry Christmas, Friend! I trust you and yours are warm, safe, and blessed on this Christmas Eve. As usual, the world is fighting over nonsense, but the Kingdom of God is doing fine. The secularists are still saying, “Happy Holidays,” but the rest of us know it is really Christmas. Nativity scenes are being banned around the land, for fear someone will be permanently traumatized by seeing a doll in some straw next to some bad plaster of paris statues. Last week I read a news flash about a school in Long Island where the kids were forced to change the words to “Silent Night.” In order to avoid offending passing Muslims, they were not allowed to sing the words “Holy Infant,” or “Christ the Savior is born,” or “round yon virgin,” and certainly not “Jesus, Lord at thy birth!” I thought they gave away the real issue. It’s not about separation of church and state, but about separation of sinners and sin.

The idea of a “holy” infant intimates that the rest of us are not. If the Messiah was born a Savior, that means we need to be saved. If a virgin actually gave birth to a Holy Infant, then this was miraculous, and there is a God. And most offensive, if this infant is indeed Lord, then I must either bow or burn. The issue is the same issue as in every important part of existence: Jesus is Lord. He came in the flesh. He was and is God. He unjustly died a criminal’s death. He rose from the grave and is now alive forevermore. His existence demands a decision, and the world would rather simply not think about it. The forces of darkness are arrayed to avoid letting people hear and see and understand this reality. Even one glimpse of the manger, one song about that holy night, one “Christ” in the holiday greeting might give away the truth to someone yet in his sin. No proper devil can stand by and let that happen! The war on Christmas is just the same old war that began in Heaven, continued in the garden, and was won by the bloody cross and the empty tomb.

Somebody Said: “Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store.” Dr Seuss

Scripture Reading: Here’s how you test for the genuine Spirit of God. Everyone who confesses openly his faith in Jesus Christ–the Son of God, who came as an actual flesh-and-blood person–comes from God and belongs to God. And everyone who refuses to confess faith in Jesus has nothing in common with God. This is the spirit of antichrist that you heard was coming. Well, here it is, sooner than we thought! My dear children, you come from God and belong to God. You have already won a big victory over those false teachers, for the Spirit in you is far stronger than anything in the world. (1Jn 4:2-4 MSG)

I’m thinking we should try to avoid getting all outraged about the “war on Christmas” and be sensitive to opportunities to get folks engaged in talking about it. They are lost and in need of a Savior. The issue is always the same: Jesus! Get as much of Him in your Christmas as you possibly can. We have the privilege during the holidays of letting others know what we know all year around. Heck, yeah!! Merry Christmas!!!!

vls

www.fcftucson.org

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