Because it makes me happy being able to get the things that I had on my wish list… I enjoy the day off work… The bonus that I receive doesn’t look too bad… I get to decorate my house… I get to spend time with my family and friends…You can get and do all of these things throughout the year so these are not the reasons why Christmas is important, is it?
Perhaps you’re on the opposite side of the coin: I really don’t see the importance of Christmas at all… I just see Christmas as a stressful time because of the amount of money I have spent, or will spend, on gifts… I’d rather be home in the comfort of my own house instead traveling… I can’t figure why someone would spend so much time in putting up decorations… It’s during this time of the year I feel lonely and depressed.
Although these statements are regularly mentioned, they are directed towards a secondary view of Christmas, not the primary sight of it. So what is the true meaning Christmas? What caused the Christmas celebration to start? How does Christmas benefit us today even though this celebration has been going on for years?
Genesis 3:1-6 talks about how the deception of the serpent led to the fall of Adam and Eve which, in turn, led to the fall of all humankind. Adam and Eve fell for the serpent’s temptation and ate from the tree of knowledge of good and evil because they wanted to be like God. Allowing themselves to be deceived led to devastating results. Instead of noticing the knowledge of good and evil that they hoped for, they noticed that they both were naked and hid because they were ashamed. When confronted by God as to why they were hiding, they started playing the blame game: Adam blamed Eve, and Eve blamed the serpent. No one wanted to take responsibility for disobeying God. As a result of deceiving and being deceived, all parties involved (Adam, Eve, and the serpent) were cursed. To make matters worse, because Adam and Eve gave over their rights, sin had entered into the world and damaged God’s creation.
It seemed like the entire human race was doomed because of the sin that Adam and Eve committed, but this is where the story is redirected back to Christmas. After the serpent is cursed, God goes on to tell the serpent in Genesis 3:15, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.” God gave His word that one of Eve’s descendants is going to defeat the serpent because of what he did; Jesus is the descendant God was making reference to.
A recap of the incident that occurred in Genesis 3 is the reason why Christmas is important. Had this not happened, there would not have been a reason to celebrate Christmas. But because this sin did take place, we had to have Christmas take place. We received a divine intervention from God when He sent His Son to die for our sins when He was born of a virgin named Mary.
This alone should change our outlook on how and why we celebrate Christmas. It’s not about shopping, catching sales, getting a day off. It’s about celebrating the fact that Jesus came to this world with the purpose to die in order to set us free from our sins. The magnitude of God is awesome because He willing to give us His best when we deserved the worst.
Directing your attention on the additional things (shopping, decorations, bonuses, etc.) could cause you to become distracted about the true meaning of Christmas. Please do not take out of context what I am saying. There’s nothing with having or doing any of these things for Christmas; it is imperative to know what is considered priority when it comes to the celebration of Christmas. As we reflect on why Christmas is important, we will really get excited about knowing that a baby named Jesus, who was born of a virgin, would grow up to die for the sins of humankind.
My prayer is that we will go before the Father with a spirit of humility on today. That you will know and understand that Jesus really is the reason for the season and because of that, we celebrate Him coming to earth as a baby. May we worship the birth of Jesus not only because He was born, but because He was born to save us from our sins in Jesus’ Name, Amen.