Most of us celebrate some form of “Christmas”. Some see Christmas as a time to unite with love ones. Merchants see it as a time to make a dollar. Others insert Santa and trees. Some see the holy day as a time to get trashed.
But why celebrate Christmas at all? To find out why we celebrate Jesus’ birth at Christmas time we have to ask: Why was Jesus born?
· Jesus (the Christ/Messiah) was born to fulfill a promise. God promised Israel that He’d send a Deliverer. Jesus fulfills this promise. (Micah 5:2)
· Jesus was born to show us what God is like. Creation reveals God and designer and governor. The Hebrew Bible shows us God as united, strong and good. Jesus teaches that God is also our Father – close, loving and intimate. Jesus was born to further reveal God to us. (John 1:18)
· Jesus was born to pay our debt. Each time I violate my conscience or ignore God’s standard I incur spiritual debt. When Jesus was executed he offered himself as a sacrifice for my crimes against God. Jesus was born to ransom me from the debtors’ prison of my own wrong doing. (I John 3:5)
· Jesus was born to be our example. Jesus tells us to learn from him. When we celebrate Christ’s birth we are saying that we want to live more like him. Jesus illustrates how God wants us to be. (Matthew 11:29)
· Jesus was born to kick Satan’s bum. At Christmastime we think of Jesus as a baby. Yet Jesus was born to destroy Lucifer. Satan will be a defeated bully. Christ will one day beat The Deceiver down forever. (Revelation 20:10)
· Jesus was born to return. Jesus was born in weakness but will return to earth in power. Christ’s birth reminds us to prepare for when He’ll bring justice and complete those who choose Him as their Master. (Romans 8:18)
Consumerism and religion distort what is now called “Christmas.” Yet, ultimately, Christmas is a full on LOVE STORY. God’s crazy about you so he sent Jesus. The history of Jesus’ birth is in the New Testament books of Matthew and Luke Just read the first two chapters of these little books and ask “Why was Jesus born?” and “What does the birth of Jesus mean to me?”
I hope that you’ll read the Christmas story in the New Testament this season. Happy Christmas to you and yours!
(Hear a Jewish take on the birth and life of Messiah in the video below.)