Posted by George Morrison

“They’re bringing religion into Christmas Cards” she said to her neighbour as they looked at a card with the nativity scene! The comment is probably apocryphal but the cards of winter scenes, Robins and berries to say nothing of Santa far outweigh the “religious” cards. So what does the Bible say about the “religious” bit? It has become popular to speak about Jesus birthday on the 25th December but there was never a time when Jesus did not exist. He was with the Father and the Holy Spirit in the councils of eternity when Creation and Redemption of humankind was planned. True he did have a birth day when he took flesh and entered our universe via the womb of a virgin and was made in all respects like us except he was without sin. Athanasius in the 4th century put it clearly when he said that “Jesus became what he was not without ever ceasing to be what he always was”. He was, is and always will be God. Isaiah put it prophetically 700 years before his birth, “You who bring good tidings to Jerusalem, lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, “Behold your God!” What was new was his enfleshment. He became man. Billy Graham the evangelist of last century illustrated this by quoting the time he clumsily trod on an ant-hill destroying the side of it. He would have liked to repair the damage but his efforts only added to its destruction. He realised that if he were to be of any use he had to become an ant in order to communicate and help in undoing the damage. Like all illustrations it has its limitations but it does reflect the love of God in giving Jesus that believers in him should not perish but have eternal life. Pilot was blind to the spiritual dimension and could only see a man, “So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Behold the man!” Who is he in yonder stall At whose feet the shepherds fall? ‘Tis the Lord O wondrous story! ‘Tis the Lord the king of glory! At his feet we humbly fall – Crown Him, crown Him Lord of all.