“Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” -Luke 2:10-11
Recorded history tells stories of kings and queens, monarchs and princes, and heads of state who have risen and fallen from power all across the world. Royalty, crowns, and thrones passed down from generation to generation, and not much to show other than stories of power struggles, misguided priorities and self-centered intentions, all seeking to make a name for themselves and leave their mark on history. It’s seems to be the story of humanity, set in the light of the public eye for all to see and read. Sure, there have been those who ruled with integrity and represented their name and country with honor, but it seems those stories are far fewer and soon forgotten. Those kinds of stories usually aren’t headline material.
“Ruthless,” “dictator,” “authoritarian” are examples of the usual tags we see placed on these kings and their leadership styles throughout history. Their actions, intentions, and purposes all tend to bring labels that live on long after they are gone, however unwanted those titles might be.
The story of Christmas is the record of a different kind of king; a King who, through His name, history was changed, forever. Scripture tells us of a King who surrendered His place in heaven to come to earth in the form of a man. He was a King with intention. He came in the form of a baby, and was born in the most humble means; in a cattle stall and laid in a feeding trough. It doesn’t get much more humiliating than that. Certainly no other king got his start like Jesus did. But that was all part of God’s plan. And the name recorded in Luke for this King tells us why Jesus came at all: Savior. Yes, Jesus came to seek and to save all who were lost, or separated from God (see Luke 19:10). No other king could adequately claim the name Savior, and live to fulfill it like Jesus did.
And that’s what gives Christmas its story. It’s not about the boxes and bows, toys and trees, Santa or his elves. It’s about a King! A King who broke the mold, set the standard, raised the bar, and provided life through surrender. He surrendered His power so that you and I might find power through our surrender. He gave up His life that we can have life, eternally. That is the story of Christmas. And that is why we celebrate. For without this story, without this Savior, we’d have no Christmas, we’d have no hope, and we’d certainly have no LIFE.
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I (Jesus) came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” –John 10:10
So what are you celebrating this Christmas season? Is it something that will most likely end up on a rummage sale table this spring? Or is it a relationship with a King who came to earth to give life, eternal life? The old cliché is needed more today than ever: “Keep Christ in Christmas.” Because if we don’t, we really don’t have Christmas. And without Christmas we have no hope. So celebrate! This is our season of life, our reminder that we do have hope. And that hope is found in a name that is above all names: Jesus, Savior, and King of Kings. Merry Christmas!
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