Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas Is Jesus Christ, God's Free Gift...Or It Is Nothing

Not Santa, decorated cedars, jingle bells or eggnog ... Just Jesus

In December 1960 I was pastoring my first of two churches. I turned 30 that month. The editor of the local newspaper asked me to submit a Christmas message for publication the week before Christmas. It was my first sermon to be published. Here is what I believed about Christmas 56 years ago and still believe today .... and forever.

Jesus, God's Free Gift

The words FREE and GIFT are noticed by almost every eye. Because of this fact, advertisers have used these two words together thousands of times, even though they actually mean about the same thing. Anything free is a gift, and a gift is always free to the receiver.

You wouldn't say, "I will give you a gift if you will give me $10.00 for it." That would be a sale and not a gift. A true gift is something which is freely given by one person to another simply because they love them. Otherwise it it a bribe, a sale or an effort to influence. A true gift always comes from a heart of love and is without cost to the one receiving it. The price is paid by the giver.

Did you know that the greatest, most valuable possession the universe can offer is a FREE GIFT to you, if you will accept it? This priceless gift is an absolute necessity to every soul who seeks peace, happiness and eternal life. The Holy Bible directs our thoughts to this greatest of all gifts in Romans 5:18, "Therefore as by the offense of one (Adam) judgment came upon all men to condemnation, even so by the righteousness of one (Jesus) the FREE GIFT came upon all men unto justification of life." 

God has promised you in Romans 6:23 that, "The wages of sin is death; but the GIFT of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." He repeats this wonderful truth in Ephesians 2:8-9 where we read, "For by grace are ye saved through faith and that not of yourselves; it is the GIFT of God; not of works, lest any man should boast." How many times have you and I been reminded of this GIFT from the words of John 3:16, "For God so loved the world that HE GAVE His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

Do you believe what God says in the Scriptures, or do you think you have to work for that GIFT, pay for it, or deserve it before He will give salvation to you? If you believe God meant exactly what He said, and if you want to receive His promised GIFT for your very own, then bow your head right now and call upon Him in prayer as He tells us to do in Romans 10:13, "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord SHALL be saved." Put your faith in Jesus Christ as your own Savior right now.

"Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable GIFT." 1 Corinthians 9:15.