But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman … (Gal 4:4).
What can be the Christian stance on Christmas?
The mystery of Christmas and the dead centre focus of the Christmas celebration is that God became human. Not just human, but a baby human. God – creator of the universe (and by extension, bigger than the universe) – consented to becoming so small that he fit in a hay trough – a manger. Let that sink in for a moment …
Not just fancy or fairy tale, this is spelled out in John 1 and explicated conceptually in multiple other Scriptural passages. Eg, “For surely it is not angels [Jesus] helps, but [humans]. For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that …” (Heb 2:16, 17)
“In order that …” There isn’t space here to complete the purpose of why He came, a new-born, but it behoves us all to find out why.
But, grasp the weight of this, and compare it to our western Christmas counterfeit. Rudolph, Frosty, tinsel and baubles, frenzied spending and eating, and an over-fed, Coca Cola-invented man (only in the 1930s) whose name is an anagram of Satan. The contrast could not be starker.
Actually, I could embrace most of that if Christ was accommodated at the centre of the Mass. The celebrations would be worth it, and far more. But our culture has gutted the feast. It’s become an illusion, designed, I say, designed, to deceive people who need to per-ceive. Is it possible to over-state this? Driven by shameless marketing and media, we strive to capture “the season” with cards and sleigh bells and Santa hats and boxes of liquor. What can we do?
I say, find small and simple ways both to avoid the offal, and spread the spirit. Try to find creative ways to share the true love and the peace-and-goodwill, whilst side-stepping the media version of Christmas spirit.
Bruce is visiting the pub to share on Christmas Eve. I’m baking today, something to share around the neighbourhood.