Spreading God's Love Thru Prayer
The Real Meaning of Christmas – Part 1
Good Morning, and praise the Lord! I thank you all for praying for me while I was away. We are beginning a new series called the real meaning of Christmas. Please turn with me to Isaiah chapter 9.
Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations. The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. Thou hast multiplied the nation, and not increased the joy: they joy before thee according to the joy in harvest, and as men rejoice when they divide the spoil. For thou hast broken the yoke of his burden, and the staff of his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, as in the day of Midian. For every battle of the warrior is with confused noise, and garments rolled in blood; but this shall be with burning and fuel of fire. For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. The Lord sent a word into Jacob, and it hath lighted upon Israel. And all the people shall know, even Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria, that say in the pride and stoutness of heart, The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycamores are cut down, but we will change them into cedars. Therefore the Lord shall set up the adversaries of Rezin against him, and join his enemies together; The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still. For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the Lord of hosts. Therefore the Lord will cut off from Israel head and tail, branch and rush, in one day. The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail. For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed. Therefore the Lord shall have no joy in their young men; neither shall have mercy on their fatherless and widows: for everyone is a hypocrite and an evildoer, and every mouth speaketh folly. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still. For wickedness burneth as the fire: it shall devour the briers and thorns, and shall kindle in the thickets of the forest, and they shall mount up like the lifting up of smoke. Through the wrath of the Lord of hosts is the land darkened, and the people shall be as the fuel of the fire: no man shall spare his brother. And he shall snatch on the right hand, and be hungry; and he shall eat on the left hand, and they shall not be satisfied: they shall eat every man the flesh of his own arm: Manasseh, Ephraim; and Ephraim, Manasseh: and they together shall be against Judah. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.
This was a dark time in biblical history, as evil was rampant, and the people had no hope. Through prophesy, it was foretold about the birth of Christ all through the Old Testament, and this is what Isaiah spoke about. Even though things appeared bleak, a light was on the horizon and shining brightly for all to see.
Because of the impending birth of Jesus centuries later, yokes were being broken in the present, and joy was coming back, not only to the children of Israel, but extending to us today. As far back as in Jacob’s day, God let Him know, and Isaiah proclaimed the truth that all was not lost, but the Savior of the world was coming down in the form of a baby, and He would save His people from their sins.
Everyone knows that all over the world, we celebrate the birth of Christ at this time, but how many people know what it means? I know that there are different schools of thought, and some folks think that it is a sin to even acknowledge His birth. Might I push back and say that because of the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, that had God not been gracious enough to provide a way of escape for mankind through the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we would all be lost, which is what we deserve at the end of the day.
So in this series, I pray that you will gain an insight into not only the history before the Lord came on the scene in the flesh, but why it’s important to celebrate Jesus, period. During this particular time when Isaiah wrote this book, people were giving into their fleshly desires, a lot like today, and didn’t spend a lot of time seeking the Lord, much less thinking about Him. Let me bring it present day. The stores start to market Christmas in July, where people can get the best deals even before Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving in the United States.
People certainly aren’t thinking about the significance of the season, because they’re going broke and maxing out their credit cards to buy gifts for their loved ones. This is supposed to be the most joyous time of the year, and people are kinder to one another, except on that particular day where people lose their minds in the stores. Folks can’t wait to decorate their houses, and don’t really want to take them down on New Year’s Eve. They linger long into January, trying to hold onto the sentiments.
We as believers buy into the hype as well. Oh, yeah, we do. While we do know that Jesus is the reason for the season, we still go broke trying to make sure that our kids have everything on their wish list. If our children are grown, then we try to buy everything in the grocery store, so that we can have the perfect table with all the trimmings for Christmas.
Others may be asking where God is in all of this. Right where He’s always been, on the throne. Sometimes I think that the Lord has a sense of humor, looking at the world going crazy with their gift purchases. Sadly, for those who may have lost loved ones during the holidays, it’s not a happy time, and many suffer from depression, missing their family and friends.
Saints, it’s great to listen to Christmas music, wish for snow, and decorate. If you have the money to shop, please feel free to do so. I’m not speaking against any of those things. However, let’s be more sensitive to the signs of the times. There are people who are lost and dying, and we’re too busy thinking about Jingle Bells and Santa instead of trying to reach them.
Had Jesus not come down 42 generations to be born of a virgin teenage girl, walk the earth for 33 years, of which three were spent in ministry, declaring repentance and salvation, every single one of us watching by Facebook Live or under the sound of my voice, myself included, would be condemned to death and eternal damnation. Yes, it’s that serious. So, please ma’am, please sir, and keep that in mind during the various celebrations between now and the end of the year. Deck the halls, jingle your bells and sing The First Noel, all to the glory of God. Pray continually, because this is just the beginning of the story. May the Lord bless you, and we’ll see you tomorrow, God willing.