I find it quite interesting that people all around the world will give gifts to each other during Christmas, but fail to understand why they do it. It seems that every ancillary Christmas tradition rises to the top and the true meaning gets obfuscated and is even cast aside.
There are many things we could mention regarding Christmas, but let us focus on the big picture and the main thing: Christmas is all about celebrating the greatest gift that was ever given, Jesus Christ. God gave the greatest gift to meet our greatest need. The prophet Isaiah had a lot to say about man’s need and spiritual condition. Look at Isaiah 53:6:
“All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;”
Isaiah is speaking about our sin nature and the human condition. We go astray, we do our own thing and we reject God. We have iniquity in our hearts, which simply means wickedness and immorality. God will judge such wickedness and immorality and sin, and we know from Romans 3:23 that the penalty is death. We are in a bad way! But be thankful because God does not leave us there! John 3:16 states that God loved us so much that He sent Jesus so that we would not perish but have everlasting life. Listen to what Isaiah says at the end of the verse 6:
“And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”
Our greatest need was a Savior from sin, and God sent a Savior in the Person of Jesus so we could be saved from sin. God laid our iniquity, our crime, our sin upon Jesus so that God could remain a just judge and not excuse sin, and that we could be free from sin and death. There are many benefits that come from God’s salvation, but the greatest is that we can be forgiven of our sin and enjoy a relationship with Jesus now and forever.
There is a big difference between presents under the tree and the presence of Jesus in our lives. Presents under the tree are temporal, but the presence of Jesus in our lives is eternal. Whatever gifts we open on Christmas day, will wear out, fade or break. God’s gift in the presence of Jesus will never fade or break. His eternal gift saves us from sin and death. What a great gift!
This Christmas Season let us focus more on the presence of Jesus in our lives than on the presents under the tree. A mere present under the tree will not save you from sin and death, but God’s present in the person and presence of Jesus will. Let us look up to the Tree of Calvary and praise God for the greatest gift ever given.