The Christmas Confrontation

He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:10-13

Some time ago I came across a news article on the sale of nativity sets reporting “that European manufacturers eager to be politically correct are retelling the story of nativity to attract single-parent customers” by removing Joseph from the sets. And in some sets the Joseph piece is replaced by a “rose complexioned female” which shop surveys say makes the nativity set marketable to lesbian consumers.

I suppose that I should not be surprised at this stuff anymore. Our world loves to dabble in religious symbols that have been drained of any meaning. We live in a culture where the cross is considered a decorative jewelry design, not as an instrument of execution and death. It is no wonder that the nativity is marketed according to consumer preferences, even immoral ones. Religion in small doses, like a pinch of seasoning, is acceptable, even fashionable in our day.

Please do not misunderstand me. I am not against nativity sets. I am against the reduction of Christian truth to fashion statement or household decoration that can be adjusted to our tastes. I am against the naïve thinking that applauds the spirituality of people who want a nativity set in spite of the fact that they rewrite the Bible to get the one they want.

The irony of it all is that the birth of Jesus Christ guaranteed the final rejection of man-made religion and pseudo-spirituality. He was the definitive revelation of God to man (cf. Heb 1:1-2), “the way, the truth, and the life” Who alone provides access to the Father (John 14:6, 1 Tim 2:5, Heb 7:25). That is why it is so important that Bible-believing Christians not forget the true significance of the Lord’s birth. We must not allow the world to squeeze us into its mold of thinking about Christmas!

And, I believe it is important to remind us that the world still does not get it. All of the Christmas decorations cannot hide the fact that most of the world has not accepted the One who was born in Bethlehem twenty centuries ago. Religious symbols and rituals do not make Christians. 21st century spirituality needs to be confronted with biblical truth. The Christ who was born, lived sinlessly and then died for the sins of mankind is coming back as the Judge of the living and the dead (cf. Acts 10:42, 17:31). The only acceptable worship of Him is repentant, believing worship, not the self-styled worship of our world that conforms Him to our ideas.

Truly enjoy Christmas—worship the One who is truly worthy of worship, and tell others about His wonderful glory as revealed in the Word!

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