From: T.M. Schoewe
Christmas is not just a holiday for exchanging gifts, enjoying a special meal or even observing a certain day by going to church. All of the above is not to be despised, but it is not Christmas.
Christmas is found in the gospel, in just a couple of words. “Unto you”… “this day”… “a Savior.” Christmas celebrates those words, which are not only true today, but every day you believe you have a Savior in Christ the Lord. Do you need a Savior? We declare “all men are created equal” and given certain rights by the Creator of mankind, Who has also given us a conscience. Unless we have a hardened heart, our conscience will tell us when our thoughts, words and deeds are not in harmony with our creation. The word for that which is out of harmony is “sin.” The word for sin in Greek means “missing the mark.” And according to the Word, for missing the mark, “the soul that sins shall die.” So do we need a Savior? Do we ever! This gets to the heart of “Christmas.”
The God who came to us at Christmas comes to us in every aspect of our lives. He was born like us, slept like us, ate like us, and learned like us. He belongs to our whole life. In days of joy, feeding the thousands on the mountain side and fishing in Lake Galilee. In routine work like us, when He was in a carpenter’s shop; with shepherds and wise men, and royalty, with murderous Herod, whose knife killed hundreds of children. He knows the tragedies of life, for He was born to suffer and die like all of us. But He did it for us, for the world! And He could do that because He was not only human like us but He was the Son of God, who would be born, live, and die for a world of rebels. At His cross, the justice and mercy of God kiss one another as He cried out,“It is finished.”
So salvation is an accomplished fact, and it covers every part our lives. And for that we should be grateful. It is done. It is not something in the future about which to be concerned but something that has already been accomplished. And in that vein, we should remember to be thankful each day and allow our gratitude to shape our thoughts, words and deeds so as to give credit to our Creator. This is most certainly true every day you believe the Christmas announcement, “unto to you is born this day a Savior Who is Christ the Lord.”
In the first gospel, an angel encouraged Joseph to take Mary as his wife when she was with child, that His name should be called Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins. Added to that is a special word that His name shall be called “Immanuel,” which from the Hebrew means “God with us.” This is the great truth of Christmas, God is with us. Christmas is simply “God is with us!”
In our Christmas festivities and celebration we often toast one another. Should we forget the Lord? Would it be a bad idea each day to lift a cup of tea or coffee or milk or some wine or spirits if you like, and make a toast, “here’s to God with us!” That might do us all a lot of good and will let a bit of glory into our lives. “Here is to our Savior, the King of creation, our God with us!”