Why Do We Celebrate Christmas Anyway?

The Christmas season is so entrenched in our culture that a person doesn’t have to be a Christian to enjoy this time of the year. In fact, even people of other world religions even enjoy the festivities of this Christmas season. Economically, businesses rely on the Christmas season to get their financial books in the “black,” thus, Black Friday and even Cyber Monday. Musically, people who have been singing songs full of profanity and perversion get to sit by a beautiful fireplace and sing “Silent Night” and “Joy to the World.” Politically, people who have been hating on each other and saying some of the worse things about each other all year get to gather around a giant Christmas tree and sing, “Auld Lang Syne.” Socially, streets that have been the venue of violent protests and rampant crimes are decorated for the cleaned up for the annual Christmas parade. Financially, people who are deep in debt are coerced to buy very expensive gifts for friends and family members because of the “Mandatory Gift Expectations” of the Christmas season. Even Christmas parties have been known to get out of control! Whether in an office or board room, a fraternity house, or a military oriented Christmas party, a lot of unchristian activities often take place—some get drunk, some get belligerent, some get angry, some get disappointed at the gifts they receive, and some even fight. Maybe we should only have Christmas parties in the church. Come to think of it, in some instances, Christian Christmas parties might not look much different from other Christmas parties.
As genuine believers in Jesus Christ and those who desire to appreciate the real Spirit of the Christmas season, we should be assured in our hearts and minds why we celebrate Christmas. Let me suggest THREE REASONS:

First: We Celebrate Christmas Because it Confirms that God Loves Us.

In Romans 5:8, the Apostle Paul writes, “But God demonstrates his love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” This verse speaks to our emotional stability. Because of Christ’s birth and subsequent death, we know we are loved. This means that God is favorably disposed to us, that is, we are the subjects of His favor. A supporting thought is found in John 3:16, which is considered the Golden Verse of Scripture, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that who ever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God is not our enemy—He loves us!

Second: We Celebrate Christmas Because it Confirms that God is With Us.

The writer of the Gospel of Matthew (1:23) quotes from the Old Testament prophet Isaiah, “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel – which means, God with us.” This verse speaks to our personal security. Embodied in His name is the assurance that He, God, will always be with us. No matter the trials and difficulties in our lives, we will never be abandoned by Him. In another context, the author of the Book of Hebrews (13:5-6) says, “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’ So we say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?’” By definition, never means never.

Third: We Celebrate Christmas because it Confirms that God is For Us.

In Romans 8:31, the Apostle Paul says, “What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” This verse speaks to our personal confidence. Our celebration of Christmas is theologically based on who God is, the purpose of Christ’s coming and our response to Christ. Once this is understood, it immediately has positive implications on our aforementioned emotional stability, personal security but here, especially our personal confidence that God has a glorious plan for us that is out of this world. In the three verses preceding Romans 8:31, Paul states confidently, “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. It should be noted that there are several theological concepts in these verses that speak to our eternal security.
Our celebration of Christmas is not seasonal; nor is our celebration negatively impacted by the trials and troubles of life nor is it dimmed because of the unhealthy commercialism that we see during this season. Celebrating Christmas is a lifelong lifestyle (24/7/365). Who else but us can say, “Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!”


Rev. Dr. Olah L. Moore

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