Summary: Part 3 of this series that is looking into the true meaning of Christmas.
“Christmas beyond the Wrapping Paper” part 3
(What is the Big Deal about Christmas)
Brian A. Moon
A television interviewer was walking the streets of Tokyo at Christmas time. Much as in America, Christmas shopping is a big commercial success in Japan. The interviewer stopped one young woman on the sidewalk, and asked, "What is the meaning of Christmas?" Laughing, she responded, "I don’t know. Is that like the day that Jesus died?"
So what is the meaning of Christmas, “What is the Big Deal about Christmas”, what is all the hub-ub about?
On the 25th of December the world stops, stores close, commercial buildings are empty, even the grocery stores are closed, but why? Why all of this if it is just about getting presents and drinking eggnog? In the past two weeks we have been looking into the true meaning of Christmas and we said it was about gifts but not ones wrapped in shinny paper. The true meaning was about God’s gift to the world in the form of his Son Jesus who gives us things like hope and peace.
But what was so special about this? What was the big deal? Why is this so important? What difference does it make that a baby came to earth 2,000 years ago? How does this effect me today? Tonight we will look at three things that will answer these questions: The big significance, the big purpose, and the big outcome of God’s gift of Jesus.
Growing up I had a friend that was born on Christmas day and I can remember having a heated conversation with him one day because he thought people decorated and celebrated his birthday. He thought his birthday was the first thing we are going to look at and that is:
The big significance
If I had to sum up the significance of Christmas in one phrase it would be… God came to earth! I grew up on the space coast right across from Cape Canaveral and it was big news when the first men walked on the moon, They even have a museum set up at NASA that has moon rocks and other stuff from the trip. BUT even bigger news than that is the God of the entire universe walked on this earth. Not only did he walk on this earth, but he became a human being just like you and me.
The Bible says, “He became like men and was born a human being.” Philippians 2:7 AMP
And it also says, “Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before God made anything at all... Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth.” Colossians 1:15 – 16 NLT
We celebrate the 25th of December as the birth of Jesus, but this was not his beginning, the manger scene with all the animals and the wise men was not the beginning of Jesus. He was there with God before the creation of this world, or even this universe, in fact the Bible says he is the one that God created the world through. The significance of that is he made you, and you, and you!!! He made you and he knows you inside and out! If I was God I think I would have done things a little different:
I would have planned my coming to earth with a lot more attention, say like right in the middle of the Daytona 500. It would be great the skies would part and I would land right in the middle of the front stretch with millions of people around the world watching. And the drivers would be in such awe that they would give me the winners check for a couple million bucks!!!
But God is obviously a lot smarter than me because he came into the world the same way each of us did, kicking and screaming, “Put me back in there…” He was born into this world and not only that but to peasant parents in a little town in the Middle East. But why, why did he come this way? Because he came to save us, not to scare us. God could have come to earth in all his glory and power and scared the bageebes out of us, but he didn’t do that. God came in a way that all of us could relate to. The Bible tells us that Jesus was a human being just like us, he was born like us, he grew up like us. We see these pictures of Jesus walking around with white skin and perfectly white robes, but he was a typical Palestinian Jew of that day. He was dark, he worked hard in a carpenters shop and got dirty, and he fit right in because he was just like the people around him. Jesus was tempted with the same things we are tempted with, he struggled with the same issues we do, he had the same desires, the same wants, the same cravings… Jesus suffered like any human being and there were times when he was sad, lonely, and tired. The significance of that is he understands what you are going through because he has already been there. He lived a normal person’s life and experienced the normal stuff we all do. God is not some distant God who has no idea what it is like to be us, he has been there and experienced that. He knows exactly how you are feeling right now, he made you, he became a human like you. So why is Christmas a big deal? Because of the significance, God came to earth and that was the most significant point in history.