Christmas and Christ
8 In Lystra there sat a man who was lame. He had been that way from birth and had never walked. 9 He listened to Paul as he was speaking. Paul looked directly at him, saw that he had faith to be healed 10 and called out, “Stand up on your feet!” At that, the man jumped up and began to walk.
11 When the crowd saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in human form!” 12 Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul they called Hermes because he was the chief speaker. 13 The priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the city, brought bulls and wreaths to the city gates because he and the crowd wanted to offer sacrifices to them.
14 But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of this, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting: 15 “Friends, why are you doing this? We too are only human, like you. We are bringing you good news, telling you to turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heavens and the earth and the sea and everything in them. 16 In the past, he let all nations go their own way. 17 Yet he has not left himself without testimony:He has shown kindness by giving you rain from heaven and crops in their seasons; he provides you with plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.” 18 Even with these words, they had difficulty keeping the crowd from sacrificing to them.
Christmas is about Christ. I think that should be clear every time we write the word Christmas but people still don’t get it.
It was the same during the time of Paul and Barnabas’ journey to Iconium. Because of the miracles that were being performed, they wanted to worship them. They had to stop the crowd from doing so. They were just humans – they were not to be worshipped.
As we celebrate Christmas – I hope we remember who we worship. I know the obvious distraction of Christmas is Santa Claus, Rudolph, Jack Frost, Snow man but look more intently – we have hide behind these characters but what we worship really is materialism, money, food and relationships.
When we say Jesus is the reason for the season, we need to mean it. Take time today to pray and spend time with the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.