December 25, 2002: Christmas Day

GRACE MERCY AND PEACE ARE YOURS FROM THE ETERNAL WORD MADE FLESH: JESUS CHRIST!

TEXT: John 1: 1 & 14: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…The Word became flesh and lived for a while among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

Fellow Redeemed Worshippers of The Baby Jesus:

Which Christian holiday is more important: Christmas or Easter? That’s kind of a “chicken vs. egg” debate, as in “which came first, the chicken or the egg,” isn’t it? For without Christmas there would not have been a Savior to save our souls by giving His life for ours on the cross. And without Easter Christ’s mission would have been a failure. So, I suppose you have to say that both are equally important. That being said, this happens to be Christmas Day. This is the feast of the nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Since ancient times, Christians have viewed today with nothing short of holy awe. We rightly confess with countless generations of believers that next to the Divine truths concerning the Holy Trinity, the incarnation of Christ is the greatest mystery of our faith. The fact that God would leave heaven and agree to take on our humble flesh. The fact that God, Whom the universe cannot contain, would agree to be contained in a baby. The fact that Christ, the second Person of the Godhead, Who was the creating force used by the Holy Father when He called the world into existence, that Christ would agree to feel human pain, human woe, and even human death.—Well, what other event known to humans can compare with all that?
This Christmas we actually have an object lesson right before our eyes. A few moments ago little Taylor Rose was baptized. A baby was given second birth, eternal birth, by that same “Word of God made flesh.” The Baby Jesus reached out to the baby Taylor and gave her the ultimate Christmas present: faith, forgiveness, and eternal life. He did all that through those simple waters of baptism which He, The eternal Word, joined Himself to. Awesome, isn’t it? Especially so since those exact same gifts have been bestowed on each of us who has been baptized and who now believes in that Baby.

You can closely examine all other world religions and their various holidays. You can do research on Hannukah, Ramadan, the solstice celebrations by the Druids, and everything in between. But none of them, none of them even comes close to the majesty and mystery of Christmas. For at Christmas time literally stood still. At Christmas the infinite met the finite. At Christmas our timeless God was born into time and space. At Christmas He does all the giving and we do all the receiving.—Just as little Taylor Rose received her gift of eternal life this very day. Yes, Christmas is a great and glorious day without which our lives would be but empty shells, husks of dry corn swept by the cold wind of despair.

I have no doubt that none of you will ever forget this particular Christmas. Why? Because of today’s baptism. For baptisms don’t often occur on Christmas Day. But I hope and pray each of you will take home more than just that memory. Take home the ageless truth confessed by St. John when he writes: “The Word became flesh and lived for a while among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

The final verse of the carol “O Come, All Ye Faithful” sums up today much better than I ever could. May it be our constant Christmas focus! “Yea, Lord, we greet thee, Born this happy morning; Jesus, to thee be glory given, Word of the Father Now in flesh appearing—O come let us adore Him, o come let us adore Him, O come let us adore Him, Christ the Lord!”
Amen