Giving encouragement and sharing the meat of God’s Word
Sunday, December 14, 2014
The Spirit of Christmas
It’s December and the spirit of Christmas is everywhere. This is the time of year when people
are concerned about being “naughty ornice” and they try live out the one portion of
scripture that no one seems to oppose, “peace, good will toward men”.
Lately, I have been reading Mere
Christianity by C.S. Lewis. If you have ever read this Christian classic,
then you know Lewis talks about a knowledge that is inherent. I believe it came
as the result of sin. Our first parents, Adam and Eve, disobediently ate of the
Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and their eyes were opened. Where they
once knew only God and purity, they instantly had an understanding of good and
evil, right and wrong. Now everyone born from Adam is born with a sin nature
and this knowledge. (Rom. 5:12).
C.S. Lewis calls it “the law of human
nature” and suggests all mankind understands this unseen standard of right and
wrong, proven by the fact that we allude to it constantly in our conversations
or arguments. For example, we all know it is wrong to cut in line, but do you
realize there is no law written that states, “Thou shall not cut in line”?
However, we know it is wrong just the same. How and why do we know this? It is
innate, inborn as the knowledge of good and evil. Scripture calls it our flesh
or carnal mind. The problem is that our flesh is corrupted by sin, “For
those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the
flesh…for to be carnally minded is death…because the carnal mind is enmity [hostile] against God for it is not subject to the law of God nor can it be. So
then those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” (Rom. 8:5-8)
Nevertheless, at Christmastime, this sinful, fleshly nature can and does
masquerade as the spirit of Christmas. For a few
weeks out of the year people stop their backbiting and conniving and
temporarily choose the good. Some even go to church and sing Christmas carols,
but this change is not permanent because come January, it all reverts back to
the way it was. True change only comes by fully understanding why
we celebrate Christmas.
Most do not remember or even care that there
were two trees in the Garden of Eden; the other was the Tree of Life. Adam and Eve were
driven from the Garden so that their sinful, fleshly, human nature and
eventually ours, could not partake of the Tree of Life, lest we live forever [eternally]
in our sin (Gen. 3:22). Let’s face it; none of us want to die. So, how can we
earn access to this Tree of Life and live forever? We cannot, unless
there is some way to rid ourselves of sin and its penalty – death, physical and
spiritual. Either we pay the penalty of death for ourselves, which would defeat
our whole purpose of gaining eternal life, or we trust someone to pay it for
Now, think about it, special qualifications
would be needed for being that “someone” to pay sin’s penalty – death. The
first and foremost qualification: He
cannot have sin of his own, because that would immediately disqualify him.
Secondly, he must be willing to die in your place. So, let me ask you, has
there ever been anyone in history born without the sin nature or the blood of
Adam? Only one person fits that bill – Jesus. The Bible tells us He was
conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin (Luke 1:26-38). This meant He
did not have the blood of Adam or a sin nature. II Cor. 5:21 says it this way, “…He[God the Father]made Him[Jesus, God the Son] who knew no
sinto be sin for us…” Mary and Joseph were given His names as
and “Immanuel” translated “God with us” (Luke 1:31, Matt.
1:21). John 1:14 tells us God “became flesh and dwelt among us”.
Later, in John 10:17-18 Jesus said, “…I lay down My life that I may take it
again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself...” What these scriptures are proving is that God,
Himself, willingly paid the penalty of sin for you. This is the gift of God – “eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
(Rom. 6:23), represented by the Tree of Lifeand
the reason we celebrate Christmas: The Gift of God was born!
This gift, wrapped up in the beautiful
package of Jesus Christ, is just like the presents beneath your Christmastree. So,
think about Christmas
morning: One present, in particular, has
your name, but you do not possess it yet. Not until you pick up that gift,
unwrap it, and accept it do you actually possess it. The gift of God is the
same. It has been there all the time, just waiting for you to open it by
believing on the Lord Jesus Christ and receiving Him into your heart.
haven’t, won’t you do that this Christmas season, so the trueSpirit of Christmas will indwell you always?