If There Was No Christmas
By Rev. A. Charles Allen
If there was no Christmas, there would be no Easter, no Thanksgiving Day, no beautiful church buildings or cathedrals, no hymns and gospel songs, no beautiful Christmas trees and lights, no Christian weddings, no twelve apostles, no New Testament in the Bible, no Tres Dias, no access to God except through an earthly priest connected with Judaism, no calendar using A.D. (Anno Domini– “in the year of the Lord”) to record how many years and days since Jesus appeared on earth, and no gift of eternal life.
Jesus’ birth is the reason we have Christmas, yet civilization has digressed until the Savior is overshadowed by Rudolph, Santa Claus, a Grinch, and other fictional characters. Christmas has been turned into a shopping bonanza that leaves many people under a burden of debt that may not be paid off until next Christmas.
What is the purpose of Christmas? An angel proclaimed the purpose to the shepherds near Bethlehem, as reported in Luke 2:10-11, “I bring you the most joyful news ever announced, and it is for everyone” (The Living Bible) “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord” (King James Version). (This is a fulfillment of the prophesy in Micah 5:2) “Then the other angels joined in praising God and saying, “‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace.'”
Such wonderful news should cause us to celebrate and rejoice. God created us in his image and loves us so much that he came to us as a human being so we could know what he is really like. Until Jesus came, man’s understanding of God was limited. At Christmas time, most people still think of him as a helpless baby. He was a baby, but he grew into manhood and modeled the kind of life we should live to please our heavenly father.
His birth is the most glorious event that heaven has ever witnessed. It changed the course of human history. But in spite of all this, multitudes will celebrate Christmas without Christ. This will be true for millions who have never heard the true story of Jesus. Many more have heard, but have failed to accept the Christ child as God’s supreme gift. Some who call themselves Christians will be the least Christian during the Christmas season. They will allow debaucheries during the holy season in excess of those permitted other times during the year. They will prepare elaborate feasts and close their door in the face of the Guest of Honor, Jesus. This has always been the case. The Jewish nation did not want him, though they had looked for his coming for centuries. The saddest statement ever written is this: “He came unto his own, and his own received him not.”
I do not know in what guise our Lord will knock at your door and mine this Christmas season. But in some fashion, he is sure to come as a special guest. If we are expecting him, we will recognize him. Christmas is a time to celebrate with your family and friends. Have a party with Jesus as your honored guest. Sing Christmas carols, share testimonies, thank God for the past year and the blessings he has bestowed upon you, and pray for one another.
Rev. A. Charles Allen serves on the International Secretariat as Spiritual Advisor to the Policy Committee.