Summary: What are the Christmas symbols about and how are we to handle them?
Many will say that Jesus is the reason for the season; but, what about all the symbols of Christmas? What are we to do with these Christmas symbols?
What are some symbols which represent Christmas?
What about angels?
Is there any other time of the year when we see so many angel figures? We sing about angels during Christmas. We see angel figures on people’s yards and on top of trees. We see children dressed up as angels on Christmas. Do angels truly represent Christmas?
What is Christmas? Christ means The Anointed King of God! Mass has the meaning of sacrifice!
When we wish and greet people Merry Christmas, we are actually desiring for them to be delighted of a God who became man and sacrificed Himself!
Christmas is about Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ lived on earth, beginning with His birth that Christmas Day, only to die on a cross to pay the sins of people! Yes, many of us will say, Jesus is the reason for the season. But do we really do Christmas with that in mind?
How can Angels represent Christmas?
Here’s what we read in the Gospel of Luke:
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."
How can Angels represent Christmas?
Angels made the first Christmas Greeting to people!
But here’s a question: Is it possible to worship angels and forget about their message about Jesus Christ?
And the sign the angels gave to the shepherds is “You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
And so we celebrate Christmas with Baby Jesus in a manger! Cute!
But here’s a question: Is it possible to worship a baby in a manger and forget about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ?
And of course, we celebrate Christmas with a Star! Why?
This is another easy one isn’t it?
We read in Matthew 2:1-2, After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, "Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him." A star led the Wisemen to Jesus Christ who they sought to worship.
But here’s a question: Is it possible to worship a star instead of who the star was pointing to?
Now, so far we noted symbols directly from the Bible. Let’s talk about a few symbols which still represent Christmas but have no direct connection with Scripture. Should we celebrate Christmas with them? Just like the angels, manger, and star, even though they are biblical, can be wrongly worshipped, we certainly can wrongly worship things that came out of traditions instead of the Bible!
We can put up a nice Christmas Tree and forget about why.
We can be caught up on a date, either December 25 or January 6, and forget about the reason and reality of what happened that actual Christmas day!
We can be so focused on gifts, buying and getting, and forget why we do gifts!
Let me share briefly how the Evergreen Tree, the date of December 25, and gifts came to represent Christmas.
Can you picture an evergreen tree in the Christmas story in the Bible? It would be silly to see a Christmas Tree in the middle of the nativity scene! Even more silly is Santa Claus in the nativity scene!
The Christmas Tree actually has several legends:
- hundreds of years ago, a missionary used the tree to represent the Trinity
- The Reform Church in the 1800s used an evergreen tree to symbolize the cross and everlasting life.
- Martin Luther one Christmas Night saw an evergreen tree full of icicles which glistened reminded him of God’s lights.
- Some used Isaiah 11:1 as a reference for a Christmas Tree; There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots.
Whichever legend you choose, a Christmas Tree can be connected with Jesus and should be a reminder of God.