THE WORD IS
ON CHRISTMAS EVE
I can remember an event from my early childhood that took place on Christmas Eve. For some reason I was at the home of our neighbor. The members of the family were just getting ready to have their traditional Christmas Eve dinner. The mother of the family suggested that, as customary, a Christmas hymn be sung. The son?in?law rejected the suggestion, saying: "What foolishness!" And so the hymn was not sung. But although the son?in?law squelched the singing of the hymn with his remark, he remembered to pay for his share of the Christmas expenses, giving a generous contribution. On this night a historical change took place in this home. Perhaps a centuries?old tradition was broken. The same has happened in many homes both before that Christmas Eve and after. There is no place for the Christ?child at His own birthday celebration. The earthly gifts He has created are eagerly accepted. But man takes the credit for these gifts for himself and fails to thank God.
Many still recall the familiar Christmas hymns, but do not join in singing them. When the heart is attached to the treasures of this world, it cannot get excited about the angel's announcement. Singing "Silent Night" might prove to be too emotional an experience and might expose a contradiction. Therefore many reject the Christmas message and continue on the road to eternal damnation.
Christmas without Jesus is beginning to be a tradition for many. An emptiness fills the heart. Not knowing the Savior of sinners, many sense that their life lacks content, has no purpose, and the future seems hopeless.
But why should you keep on heading toward destruction? Jesus has come so that you might have life, and have it abundantly. He is for us. He has come especially also for you. "Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given" (Is. 9:5). "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16). "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace" (Eph. 1:7). This is the kind of gift God has given us.
Let us return to the Christmas hymns. Let's join in singing them despite everything, and let's let their words speak to us. Then we will realize how great a gift we have been given. Even though your past speaks against you, Christ speaks in your behalf. Don't say that you can't sing the hymns; just sing them.
"Ah, dearest Jesus, holy Child,
Make Thee a bed, soft, undefiled,
Within my heart, that it may be
A quiet chamber kept for Thee."