December 19, 2005

The Reason for the Season

1 John 3:1-10

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! 1 John 3:1


We often hear silly things said about the meaning of Christmas. Some years ago, for example, supermodel Christie Brinkley, surrounded by small children, said on the NBC news, "Christmas is really all about children's bright, shiny faces." That's nonsense. People did not compose glorious music, build magnificent cathedrals, find hope in the face of dying, leave family and friends for the mission field, and lie prostrate in adoration because of children's bright, shiny faces. On the same day that I heard that statement, I attended a Christmas concert. The choir entered singing, "He came down to earth from heaven, who is God and Lord of all." At the close of the concert, the choir slowly proceeded out of the sanctuary following a boy holding a large cross--an executioner's tool. What is Christmas about? Our Scripture reading for today gives us an answer. Jesus came to make us children of God, offering us a future beyond imagining. And we are reminded that "he appeared so that he might take away our sins" and "destroy the devil's work." Both sin and the devil had to be dealt with so that we might belong in life and in death to Christ. These are the remarkable reasons that give rise to celebration and to holiness this season.

O God, may we not miss the true reason for the singing and celebration of Christmas. Please fill us with a wholehearted desire to do what is right in Jesus' name. Amen.

About the author — Jack Roeda

Rev. Jack Roeda is the senior pastor at Church of the Servant Christian Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan, and an adjunct professor of preaching at Calvin Theological Seminary. He is married to Carol Sue Kok, and they have three children and two grandchildren. Pastor Roeda has served two previous churches: Exeter (Ont.) Christian Reformed Church and Calvary Christian Reformed Church, Holland, Michigan.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!