Thursday, 30 November 2017 08:22

When Christmas Loses Its Meaning

I recently asked a church group I was teaching to list places where they would like to share the gospel of Jesus.  You could probably guess many they shared.  Places like India, Iran, Japan and Spain. 

Closer to home they shared New York and Boston.  These places do offer a higher concentration of people living apart from the God of the Bible, so it makes sense to share Jesus with them.  But, I asked if anyone had thought to share the gospel in their own church.

 

Our celebration of Jesus’s birthday and divine mission is quickly approaching and it’s a fact that the church goers of His day struggled to see His significance as the promised Messiah.  His birth was announced to lowly shepherds who rejoiced when they found Him in a stable with Mary and Joseph.  Later in His life, He changed the hearts of a tax collector, prostitute, and criminal who worshipped Him as Lord.  Yet, for the majority of those well versed in the Scriptures and religious rituals, Jesus was a threat.

 

See, it’s easy to recognize a “sinner”.  The Bible, at the end of Romans ch. 1, highlights some of their typical traits, “full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip.  They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents.  They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy.”

 

This group is clearly guilty and needs the gospel of Jesus explained to them BIG TIME!  But, what if when you look in the mirror you know you’re nothing like these sinners and you’re basically a good person?  Then you’re worshipping your goodness more than Jesus.  That’s called self-righteousness and it’s a deadly disease with a strong grip that prevents you from placing all your hope in Jesus and His righteousness.

 

This Christmas season is the perfect time to meditate on the person and work of Jesus.  Jesus said He is the Way, the Truth and the Life.  No one can come to God except by Him because it’s His righteousness alone that makes us white as snow.  Jesus, in His famous Sermon on the Mount, sought to reveal our unrighteousness when He declared that those who have anger or lust in their hearts are just as guilty as the murderer and adulterer.  Would any of us want all the things in our heart shared with the world?  How ashamed would we be?  Yes, religious people need the gospel too.  Deep down, we’re as guilty as the next man.  We all need the righteousness of Jesus the Messiah.  It’s called the Great Exchanged Life and it’s what makes Christmas so special.

 

Merry Christmas! Jason Watson

 

Jason is the President and Publisher of Keep Sharing, the parent company of River Region's Journey.

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