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WHAT AN OPPORTUNITY

December 9, 2005

The news of late has been filled with reports about the “Christmas Dilemma”. Is it Christmas or just a Holiday celebration? There is a real paradox in all this given my religious background. During the days of my youth much of the discussion about Christmas was that it was not on December the 25th., and that unlike the religious world around us, we should not be celebrating the birth of Christ. There were “Christmas” hymns in our song books, but we dare not sing them in December. What was even stranger, we hardly ever sang them at all! If there was a
“Christmas” sermon around the 25th., it was one of those that detailed how we don’t know when He was born, and the real important celebration was his death and resurrection commemorated in the Lord Supper which was taken each and every Lord’s Day. I am glad those days are behind me.

This year Christmas day is Sunday, the Lord’s Day. How special it will be not only to focus on His birth, but to remember his resurrection as well. We will give special attention to the two most profound events in all of history. His birth, God coming into our world as a baby, and His resurrection, when He obtain victory over sin and death for us all. Wow, what a celebration that will be. The media has reported that numerous “mega” churches will not have services on the 25th. this year. As I listened to those reports I ask my self, “What are they thinking????” What an opportunity — missed!

Eight short miles of distance separated the two most profound events in history. Eight short miles between His birth in a feed trough to Golgatha’s shameful hill and His glorious resurrection from the tomb of Joseph. Angels announced the Emmanuel event to shepherds, and Angels gave testimony to His resurrection and power over the tomb. Angels could only look on in wonder, we look back as benefactors of those blessed events.

As a child it was hard to go to sleep on Christmas Eve. Thoughts of Santa’s coming, the gifts under the tree, and great food and fellowship. As an adult those feelings of excitement waned over the years. But somehow, I think they just might return this year. A celebration of His birth and resurrection together–I can’t wait!

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