ACCM 2015: The Meaning of Christmas

Today is the twenty-third day of Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories 2015!

The featured topic is – the Meaning of Christmas – and the focus is on . . .
If someone dropped out of the sky and was unfamiliar with the concept of Christmas, how would you explain it to them? Can you put the meaning of Christmas into words? What does Christmas represent to you and is it different than when you grew up or from the meaning it had for your ancestors? Tell us what Christmas means to you and your memories of Christmases past.

When I thought about this featured topic and the possibility of meeting someone who was unfamiliar with the concept of Christmas, Charlie Brown’s question – “Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?”- to his friend Linus in the movie, A Charlie Brown Christmas, immediately popped in my head! Why did I think of Charlie Brown, and this movie? Well, everything I learned about Christmas and the birth of Christ in my early childhood Sunday School classes were summed up nicely by Linus when he responded to Charlie Brown’s question with this speech from the movie below –

Linus Van Pelt: Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you what Christmas is all about.
[moves toward the center of the stage]
Linus Van Pelt: Lights, please.
[a spotlight shines on Linus]
Linus Van Pelt: “And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not:”
[Linus drops his security blanket on purpose]
Linus Van Pelt: “for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.'”[Luke 2:8-14 KJV]
Linus Van Pelt: [Linus picks up his blanket and walks back towards Charlie Brown]
That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown. [1]

Yes, Linus’ speech above is an excellent start, but the meaning of Christmas I believe is so much more than this. While surfing the Internet lately I came upon Pastor John MacArthur’s ‘Grace to You‘ website where he sums up the meaning of Christmas beautifully below –

For many, Christmas is the time to think of Jesus Christ as a baby in a manger. While the birth of Christ is a special and miraculous event, it isn’t the primary focus. The central truth of the Christmas story is this: the Child of Christmas is God . . . The humble birth of Jesus Christ was never intended to conceal the reality that God was being born into the world.” [2]

The deity of God is clear in n John 1:1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”  Then verse 14 of that same chapter of John continues , “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

Source Citation –

1. A Charlie Brown Christmas Quotes. (1990, October 17). Retrieved December 25, 2015, from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0059026/quotes

2. MacArthur, J. (2006, October 23). What is the real meaning of Christmas? Retrieved December 25, 2015, from http://www.gty.org/resources/questions/QA70/what-is-the-real-meaning-of-christmas

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