As this December issue of Beacon Lights comes into your home, no doubt your thoughts are turning to those things that usually are associated with the Christmas season. In our churches our pastors are now preaching pre-Christmas sermons. Our younger brothers and sisters are preparing to render a program on Christmas day, telling the story of the birth of the Savior in word and song. We are also preparing the gift list of our friends and relatives and perhaps we are planning our budget to meet the strain of the Christmas shopping season. This season is indeed a busy and important time for us and often the pressure of life during the Christmas season causes us to be dulled to the full significance of the Christmas message.
The Christmas message of the fact that “unto us a child is born and unto us a son is given….and his name shall be called Immanuel”—is a most important message for us as Christian youth in the church of God. It is important because this message tells us that God sent His Son in the likeness of sinful flesh in order that the propitiation and atonement of our sins should be accomplished. This fact of the incarnation of our Lord has vital significance. It is the cornerstone of our faith. If this message had never been given to us we would never have come to the knowledge of the forgiveness of sins and the blessings of eternal life.
The Christmas message is particular. When the heralds of the Christ-child sang their glorious songs they did not sing to the world in general, to the Roman rulers of the earth nor to the apostate church of those days, but they sang their wondrous song to the shepherds, to the meek and lowly, to the poor in spirit, to those who were distinguished by a true and trusting faith that God would remember His covenant people and provide a Saviour for them. This is still true today in this decade of the twentieth century A.D. The Christmas message today has a spiritual significance only for the true and faithful church of God. Although many pious platitudes are found on the lips of worldly people, the Christmas message has no significance for them because they fail to see that the babe of Bethlehem is the Saviour of men of good will. This message comes to the church, to those who have been reborn by an almighty work of God whereby the spiritually blind have been made to see the things of the kingdom of heaven.
The message of Christmas was long awaited by the saints of the Old Testament era. They had received the promise from Jehovah that a Saviour would be provided for them and the faithful sons of God throughout the long dark centuries of that era had looked forward with longing hearts to the advent of the servant of the Lord. The speech of Simeon was indeed an expression of joy at the fulfillment of the promise of God.
To us, if we hear the Christmas message with a true faith, the Gospel of the birth of our Saviour is also a source of joy and comfort. But this wonderful truth can only be discerned spiritually. Desperately wicked men attack this Gospel continually hoping to overthrow the faith of the chosen saints by their perverse railings against the doctrine of the virgin birth of our Lord. As each Christmas season approaches the vicious and malicious slander against the Lord of glory is repeated. In interpreting modern thought concerning the Christ, we must, in the light of Scripture, place the modern view in the category of the things pertaining to the antichrist. Although the true message of Christmas is daily ridiculed, we nevertheless affirm that the word of God is true and that our trust is in the Christ-child.
The blessedness of the Christmas message lies in the fact that it tells us “things which eye hath not seen nor ear heard.” The history of this world is nothing but a succession of sinful words and actions, of scene after scene exhibiting the sordidness and depravity of mankind, of a sequence of events distinguished by corruption. Against this horribly black background, God, as it were, in letters of fiery purity, has written that He has appointed us a Saviour. The blessedness of the Christmas message lies in the fact that we belonged to this history of corruption but by the gracious power of God were regenerated and converted from sin to the service of God. The Christmas message is a vital part of that act of God. We are saved by virtue of the fact that Christ came in the midst of our death and corruption and became sin for us and delivered us from the wrath of God. For that we sing the song of the angels “Glory to God in the highest.”