‘I bring you good tidings’

Christmas! What a wonderful, holy time of the year when Christians celebrate the birth of God’s only begotten Son, Jesus Christ.

 

Hundreds of years before Jesus was born a prophet named Isaiah foretold His birth. The Bible says in Isaiah 9: 6, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”

Then hundreds of years later the Bible tells us in the first chapter of Luke that the angel Gabriel appeared to the virgin Mary with a message from God, “behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest.”

Now some people may ask, “Why do Christians celebrate Christmas?

The Bible answers that question in the second chapter of Luke when, during the night Jesus was born, suddenly an angel appeared to shepherds who were caring for their sheep in a field near Bethlehem. The angel said, “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

The angels tell us we should celebrate Christmas because Jesus will take away our fears. During our lifetimes all of us will experience some kind of fear, but Jesus said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

Christians also celebrate Christmas because Jesus brings good tidings of great joy, to all people. The good tidings are the Good News of the Gospel which teaches us that salvation comes by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ and it brings everlasting joy to everyone who puts their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

The Good News of salvation in Jesus is offered to all people. It doesn’t matter if you are poor or rich; it doesn’t matter what your gender is; and it doesn’t matter what your nationality or race is; Jesus was born into the world to save all people from the ravages of Satan.

The angels also tell us that when we celebrate Christmas we are praising and glorifying God for His Son who will bring peace and good will to the hearts of all who will put their faith in Him.

Throughout Jesus’ ministry He was constantly glorifying God, His heavenly Father.

The Bible tells us in John 17: 1 that shortly before He was crucified, “Jesus lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, ‘Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee’.”

Finally, the best way Christians can celebrate Christmas is to carry the message of the Gospel to those who are not saved, because without Jesus in Christmas their celebration will be empty and meaningless.

Rev. Paul L. Cook

Augusta

 

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