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December 2010

The Festival of the Father

He (God) did not give His Son for the purpose of coming to straighten us out.

Of all our customs at Christmas time, gift giving is perhaps the most universal. It may also be the most exciting custom, at least in the minds of children who can’t wait to see what they will get for Christmas. When a gift is received, it’s natural to want to examine it carefully. It is exciting to get something new and to try it out.

However, we don’t want to forget the giver. The gift means so much more when it is given by someone who loves us. While a new shirt or piece of jewelry is nice to receive and a new toy can be fun, the real gift is the love of the person who chose that particular present and paid the price to give it to us.

Isn’t that really what the festival of Christmas is all about? We have received the most incredible gift of all – the eternal, holy Son of God, wrapped in the flesh of a little baby. We rejoice in that gift. He is beautiful and wonderful. We want to examine Him carefully and use Him and find our joy in Him.

“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!”
1 John 3:1

At the same time we don’t want to forget the Giver. We can often tell a lot about the heart of the giver by looking at the gift. When we really love and care for someone, we as the givers don’t want to get any old piece of junk just to have something to give. Instead, don’t we spend time searching for something that will be meaningful and will last?

Also, the more the person means to us, the more we will be willing to sacrifice to get something really special, because love knows no bounds. The greater the sacrifice, the greater the love of the giver.Read More »The Festival of the Father

What Should Christian Pastors Preach About On Christmas?

“Christmas is giving!”

How often haven’t we heard that statement? And properly understood, it is correct.

However, the majority of people who hear that statement would think of the giving of gifts, the giving of love, the giving of help and kindness. None of that is wrong except that it misses the real point of Christmas, the real reason for our worship, the real reason for this holiday!

“I am the light of the world. He who follows me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”  John 8:12 So what should Christian pastors preach about on Christmas? No doubt we’d be surprised by the answers if we asked the question of people on the street. We might even be surprised by the answers some church members might give. In fact, we might even be surprised by the answers some pastors might give.

We would probably hear answers that would range from “pastors should preach about love and sharing” to “pastors should preach about working at bringing about peace on earth among nations and people.” We might hear answers such as “pastors should preach on the grace of giving or how we should feed the hungry and house the homeless.”

But this article was not written to find out what I think pastors should preach about on Christmas nor what you or any other person thinks, but what God thinks.

And that is exactly what Christian pastors should preach about on Christmas — about what God says: His Word (and not only on Christmas but everyday)!

During the Christmas season Christian pastors should preach THAT GOD’S GRACE IN CHRIST SAVES.Read More »What Should Christian Pastors Preach About On Christmas?