The first recorded celebration of Christmas took place in 336 AD under the reign of the Roman Emperor Constantine, who had slowly converted to Christianity. It was Pope Julius who eventually made December 25th the official date of celebration in 529 AD.
Although Christmas is not mentioned in the Bible, it is Biblical to celebrate the first coming of Christ and His birth. When the shepherds found out about the birth of Jesus, they worshipped God and then told everyone around them that the Savior of the world had come (Matthew 2).
With Christmas around the corner, here are 7 lessons the Bible teaches us in relation to this holiday.
7 Lessons We Learn From Christmas
The Lesson of the Genealogy of Jesus
In Matthew 1, we see 4 women mentioned among many in the long list of genealogy. Upon reading this for the first time, one might assume that they are the greatest and the holiest woman, but if you look at each one of their lives individually you’ll notice that they had quite a sinful past. Among the woman listed are Rahab, the prostitute; Tamar, the abused; and Bathsheba with whom David committed adultery. All these women had a past.
It’s as if God allowed this detail to be inserted into the genealogy of Jesus to remind us that every sinner has a future, and every saint has a past. None of us are holy without Christ. The question that this detail provokes is not,
“Do you have a past?” as much as “Are you connected to Christ?”
Although in the physical sense we might not be listed in the genealogy of Christ, spiritually, we can be connected to Jesus’ life by choosing to surrender to Him regardless of our past sins or mistakes.
The Lesson of Miracles
Prior to the coming of Jesus Christ, we see that there were over 400 years of silence on the earth. We don’t see any supernatural events taking place in Scripture. Right before Jesus came, we begin to see different Scriptures that mention angelic visitations, both to Mary (Luke 1:26-28) and Zachariah (Luke 1:11-14). Not only was the visitation of angels supernatural, but also the message that a virgin and a woman of old age were to give birth.
In the same way, I believe that as we get closer to Jesus, we begin to see miracles happen all around us. During this time, be open to miracles. Expect to heal, expect deliverance, expect God to move in your life.
The Lesson of Gifts
We know from the story of Jesus’ birth that the wise men brought gifts to Jesus. In the same way, the birth of Jesus Christ is God’s gift to the earth. The gift is not only salvation, but the Savior, not just peace or blessings, but God Himself. Faith is what unwraps this gift. Through faith in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross we can be forgiven of our sins and be made righteous (Romans 9:10). The gift of salvation is wrapped, but you can receive it by your faith in Jesus Christ or you can reject it by choosing not to believe in His existence.
During this Christmas season, we focus on Jesus and the gift that His life and death brought us. Regardless of its pagan roots, the reason for our celebration is the birth of our Lord and Savior.
Jesus didn’t come to give us presents; He came to give us His presence.
The Lesson of the Manger
Jesus was born in a stable not some palatial estate. His birth seemed unworthy of divine royalty – dirty, dark, defiled, and full of animals.
The stable is a perfect example of the human heart– it’s dirty, dark, and unworthy of Christ. However, when we open up our lives to Christ through repentance and faith, He will come and sanctify our hearts making our lives a place where His presence can reside.
The Lesson of the Shepherd
It was the shepherds who were first notified about the birth of Jesus, not the Pharisees. We see that Jesus also referred to Himself as a shepherd. I believe that Jesus reminds us that just as shepherds stay with their sheep, lead them, and care for them, in the same way, Christ does that for us.
As our Shepherd He restores us when we drift or fall away. He goes after us and brings us back to the flock.
The Lesson of the Star
The Bible mentions the wise men following the star. Their pursuit led them to King Herod first, and then eventually to the manger where Jesus lay. I believe the Bible is the perfect representation of the star. It is not possible to know Jesus without the Bible, but it is possible to know the Bible and not know Jesus.
Read the Bible. It has purifying power, healing power, converting power, and is profitable to keep you from sin and error (2 Timothy 3:16). The Bible is given to us so we can become familiar with the way He speaks. Be sure to follow the light that is a lamp unto your feet (Psalms 119:105). Follow the star which is the Word of God. Let the Word bring you closer to the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
The Lesson of Salvation
Regardless of when Jesus was actually born, Jesus was born to save you and me.
The Bible says,
And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.”
During this time, the world is celebrating the birth of Jesus. Yes, much of this holiday has been made about gifts, trees, and Santa, but the underlining reason remains the same.
Have You Received This Gift?
Jesus is the best gift you can receive this Christmas, and you can receive Him right now. There is no such thing as a sinner’s prayer in the Bible, but one thing is true, sinners pray and God listens.
If you are not right with God or have never had a relationship with God, I invite you to pray this with me:
Jesus, I repent of my sins. I ask that You wash me with Your blood and cleanse me of my sins. I believe that you came to die for me. Be my Lord and my Savior.
I pray this was a blessing. Please share this blog and let me know what you think!