Whatever Happened to Christmas?

Enjoy the beautifully narrated 19-minute MP3 audio version of The Christmas Story gracefully accompanied with orchestral background music (click here).

“Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring to you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger…Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” Luke 2:10-14 NKJV.

The rich history of the virgin birth is so significant to our Christian faith and is strongly rooted in the American tradition. It was rooted in the American culture since the pilgrims’ arrival almost 400 years ago to present the gospel of Jesus Christ to this new nation. However, the significance of Christmas has recently lost its true historical meaning in America. Today, through the revisionist pen, historians and politicians we have excluded this time honoring event, falsely claiming “separation of church and state.” Through strategic media promotions, more and more people have innocuously hailed Santa Claus almost to the status of “Deity.”  Consider the comparisons below.

JESUS CHRIST (Omnipresent) “I am with you always, even to the end of the world.” Matthew 28:20 

SANTA CLAUS  (Artificial-Omnipresence) He visits cities and countries around the world in less than one day bringing toys and gifts to millions of kids. Santa   Claus is coming town

JESUS CHRIST (Omnipotent) “All power is given to me in heaven and earth.” Matthew 28:18.

SANTA CLAUS  (Artificial-Omnipotence)  Santa Claus is claimed to even have supernatural powers – to successfully accomplish this annual task each year.

JESUS CHRIST (Omniscient) “And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord you knowest the hearts of all men . . .” Acts 1:24                                                                          

SANTA CLAUS (Artificial-Omniscient) The famous Santa Claus jingle, “He knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you’re awake, he knows when you are bad or good, so be good for goodness sake.”

Notice, the similarities listed above in the comparison between Jesus Christ and Santa Claus. Except for being omnipotent (or all-powerful), Santa Claus has been given the same attributes of Christ (omnipresent and omniscient), which can only apply to God. This coupled with the fact that our society has silently acquiesced to the removal of Christ Jesus from every venue of Christmas, should lend some concern on our part.

How can mankind find peace during such a celebrated season when it rejects Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace?  Although most parents and children believe the biblical accounts of the birth of Christ, they have also embraced, and are becoming more familiar with the legendary little chubby, dimpled faced, white bearded man wearing a red and white suite. The politically correct terms used today, lest anyone is offended, is Seasons Greetings or Happy Holidays. Santa traverses the globe in a sleigh being pulled along by eight flying reindeer, rather than acknowledging and accepting the greatest gift ever given to mankind (God sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to save His people from their sins).

Epicurus, the Greek Philosopher, living about 2300 years ago and spent his entire life devoted to the pursuit of pleasure. A similar philosophy “eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die” permeates the mindset of our Western culture.  I believe the exclusion of Christ from Christmas, has caused many of us to grow up spoiled, ungrateful and unthankful.  We have been encouraged to pursue a false sense of security through status and importance, rather than acknowledging Jesus Christ who came and gave His Life as a sacrifice for humanity. The gospel of John describes Jesus’ mission perfectly when he writes, “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son . . .” John 3:16.  Please, do not misunderstand me. I’m not suggesting that we entirely discard the traditional Santa Claus, who also has his place in our American tradition, but that we should extend more energy this Christmas season honoring ‘Jesus Christ’ as the True Meaning of Christmas in our homes and communities.  Each year, it seems, fewer people in our society affirm the historical biblical teachings of Jesus Christ. His miraculous birth, ministry, death and resurrection.

Talking to both Christians and non-Christians alike, many have expressed the fact that Christmas has become too commercialized. A sure indication, I believe, that most people realize that something has gone awry. With the aggressive commercialization of Christmas to increase profit margins, Santa Claus has systematically—dethroned the Christmas of Jesus Christ.  In the past, during Christmas, the historical event of the Nativity scene was eagerly placed in homes, schools, malls/businesses, and government buildings reiterating to us the importance of Christ in Christmas. Therefore, by depriving our children of the historical celebration each year, Jesus Christ has become null and void in our minds. Many children are still growing up in a culture that celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ during Christmas, but Santa Claus has publicly taken center role. Yes, Christ has totally been removed from Christmas. His removal has proven to be a travesty. How many people do you know pray with their children or even acknowledge Jesus Christ prior to opening their gifts on Christmas Day? Not many, I guarantee you. Help us put Christ back into Christmas.

Please enjoy the beautifully narrated The Christmas Story gracefully accompanied with orchestral background music and share it with family and friends.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to all,

Chauncey Killens

Witness in the Public Square Ministries