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Summary: The Christmas spirit is many things.

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THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT

Matthew 2:1-12

INTRO.- What is the Christmas spirit? It all depends on who you are. ILL.- Here’s a story called “The

Christmas Spirit,” which is one of the best I’ve found.

“Pardon me, Sir, I’m a stranger in town. I thought you might be able to tell me what’s going on.”

“Sure, anything. Glad to help. What do you mean, what’s going on?”

“Oh, you are a stranger! Well, stranger, this is the Christmas season. All of those decorations are to

help us get the Christmas spirit; and these people are doing their Christmas shopping.”

“Christmas shopping, you say? Do people shop more at Christmas than at other times? And what is the Christmas spirit? These folks look all hurried and worn out; and some of them even look angry.”

“Oh, yes, stranger, people shop more at Christmas. Some people even buy so much they go way in debt. You see, we buy gifts for each other; and then on Christmas Eve we have parties and family gatherings and exchange gifts.”

“Oh, that sounds interesting. Does everyone get just what he needs? And say, I see a lot of poor people. Do you exchange gifts with them, too?”

“Oh, no, we don’t always get just what we need, but that’s not the idea. And we don’t expect the poor

people to give us anything. But most of us give 50 cents or so to help them have a Merry Christmas.”

“Say, friend, I don’t want to see seem too ignorant, but these funny looking people dressed in red and

wearing long white bears, who are they?”

“Boy, you really are a stranger! Those are Santa Clauses. Santa Claus is the symbol of Christmas.

Nobody seems to know for sure when or where Santa Claus started; but we tell our children that at

Christmas Santa comes and brings them gifts. They really get excited. Yeah, Santa and Christmas

really go together.”

“That does sound exciting. But say, while we were talking, a man fell down in the gutter there.

Shouldn’t we help him up? No one else has offered to.”

“Oh, he’s all right. Probably had an office party and drank his gift all at one time. That’s the way some

celebrate Christmas. Just anything for a good time.”

“Yes, I see, anything for a good time. Say, there’s some rather interesting music coming from that store, but every now and then I hear a song about a white Christmas. I think I understand that one, too. That one about city sidewalks dressed up in holiday style seems appropriate. But there’s one in there that sounds like, Joy to the World, the Lord is come. What does that mean?”

“Well, stranger, I can’t explain that too well. You see, there are a few religious fanatics who claim that

Christmas has something to do about a baby called Jesus. I don’t know too much about it, but I guess

some people used to think that Christmas was His birthday. Anyway, they wrote a lot of mushy songs

about it and most of the old timers still sing them. Some of the churches still teach them to the kids, I

guess. I suppose the stores play one now and then to be sure they get the trade from those people who call themselves Christians.”

“I’d like to know more about these songs and that story. Do you know anyone who could tell me more?”


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