Buddy wasn’t “Ho Ho Ho-ing” when I pinned the Christmas bow on top of his head. But, out of love for me, he stood still and let me take his picture even though he hates the camera.
Christians joyfully celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, whose virgin birth was prophesied 700 years previously by the prophet Isaiah: “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace.”–Isaiah 9:6-7
“Behind, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel,”–Isaiah 7:14
“Which translated means, ‘God with us.'”–Matthew 1:23
Yet, we look around the world and there is no peace. In fact, Jesus even told His disciples that:
“When you hear of wars and disturbances, do not be terrified…Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. But before all these things, they will lay their hands on you and will persecute you, delivering you to the synagogues and prisons, bringing you before kings and governors for My name’s sake…you will be betrayed by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death, and you will be hated by all because of My name.”–Jesus, Luke 21:9-12, 16-17
“Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household.”–Jesus, Matthew 10:34-36
Since Jesus promised that there would be wars and enmity even with a family, what peace are we celebrating on Christmas with the birth of Christ, the Messiah?
We’re celebrating the coming of PEACE WITH GOD HIMSELF.
Jesus came to the earth to die for our sins. Why? Because God’s wrath abides on humankind for our ungodly deeds. God is perfectly holy and must punish evil. But He sent Jesus to take the punishment instead, so that we don’t have to suffer the penalty for God’s anger against our sin.
“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the FORGIVENESS of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation…and through Him to RECONCILE all things to Himself, having made PEACE through the blood of His Cross; through Him…And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet He has now RECONCILED you in His fleshly body through death in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach…” Apostle Paul, Colossians 1: 13-15, 20-22 (Emphasis mine in all caps.)
Forgiveness is a free gift of love from God, bought with the blood of Jesus. It is why He came: He loves us so much that He doesn’t want to be alienated from any of us. He became flesh and dwelt amongst us (John 1:1, Matthew 1:23) and suffered God’s wrath on the Cross for our sins.
We don’t earn it by being good, because it’s impossible to meet God’s standard of entering Heaven–perfection. (Matthew 5:48)
The only thing a person needs to do to be at peace with God is the most difficult thing for anyone to do: to humble oneself, to admit I am sinful and need God’s guidance and direction in my life–that He is Lord and not myself. Adam and Eve rejected His Lordship, so that their descendants are all born spiritually dead and alienated from God. It is up to us to individually accept Him.
Will you do that today? Give yourself the very best and merriest Christmas gift of all?
A relationship with God?
Peace and Joy in the heart, freedom from shame and guilt? A change in direction from Hell to Heaven?
Merry Christmas and love from Dawn and Buddy
If you’re ready, please pray this prayer:
Lord, I realize that I fall short of your perfect standard of holiness. I cannot earn salvation nor a right standing with you. By faith I accept that Jesus died for my sins and ask that the Holy Spirit enter into my life and direct me. I accept that Jesus is God in the Flesh, Immanuel, and ask You to be the Lord of my life. Thank you for hearing my prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.
If you prayed this prayer, you are born-again. Please obtain a Bible to learn more about God and His ways, and a Bible-based church where God’s grace is preached.
I personally prefer the New American Standard version (NASB), but there are many good translations.
God bless you. Love, Dawn