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audio The Celebration of Christmas

Staff Member
Christmas celebrates the culmination of the three most important events in history—the birth of Jesus, His crucifixion, and His resurrection—without which our sins would make us unacceptable to God. While we exchange presents, admire Christmas lights, and sit around a table full of friends and family, there is a living history we ought to keep at the forefront of the holiday.

Although we usually associate Christmas with happy celebrations, it’s also an appropriate time for serious reflection about our eternal destiny. When people are strong and prosperous, they don’t give much thought to the day of their death because they can go where they choose and do what they want, but the day will come when we must each stand before God. The Bible clearly shows us the way to be ready for that day, and Christmas reminds us that the only person who can forgive our sins is Jesus Christ. He died in our place, and His resurrection proved that God accepted His sacrifice as full payment for our sins. Because He’s alive, we can know we are forgiven. Even when our bodies are placed in the grave, we will immediately be present with the Lord in heaven. This is our living hope that can never die.

Because Jesus came to earth, we can think about Christmas in an entirely new way. The trees remind us of the cross where He died, the gifts of the eternal life He offers us, and the lights of the Light of the World who now lives in our hearts.

Considering all that Christ has done for us, we should be filled with gratitude at Christmastime.

With all the distractions and traditions of Christmas, we need to be intentional about keeping Jesus the central focus. Here are a few suggestions that may help:
  1. Open a Bible to the first chapter of Luke and place it beside the gifts under the tree as a reminder to read the story of Jesus’ birth on Christmas morning.

  2. Take a few moments to recall how God saved you. Share your testimony; then thank and praise the Lord for who He is and what He’s done. Remember that everything you have is from Him, even your next breath.

  3. Praise Christ for what He’s done for you all year long. And most of all, thank Him for saving you—not because He had to, but because He chose you.
When we take time for serious reflection concerning life, death, and eternity, Christmas becomes more meaningful. So don’t let the world distract you from the greatest reason we have for hope. Do something different this year: give Christ the preeminence—and celebrate a truly joyful season.

Sermon: Charles Stanley
Celebrating the Birth of Christ

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