Tuesday, December 24, 2013

What If Christmas Were Canceled

We had to cancel the outdoor Live Nativity at our church on Sunday. The weather forecast called for an ice storm all day and evening. So we preemptively canceled it on Saturday. Gene Kelly may have enjoyed singing in the rain, but no one wants to sing Christmas carols in the freezing rain.

What would have happened if the first Christmas had been canceled? What if God had said, “The weather is too bad, and it is such a long trip to Bethlehem? There is no room at the inn anyway. Christmas is canceled.”

What if the Almighty had looked down from heaven and declared humankind a lost cause? No need to send his Son. In his foreknowledge God knew that man would reject his Son and kill him. So what’s the point? Why not cancel the whole program? Why not cancel Christmas?

No angels, no wise men, no star of Bethlehem. An empty manger, an empty womb. Another boring night for the shepherds watching their flocks by night. No Sermon on the Mount. No miracles. No parables. No Good Friday. No Easter Sunday. No gospel.

Many people think it would make no difference if Jesus had never been born. Some believe the world would be better off without Christianity. Atheist Christopher Hitchens wrote a book entitled, “God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything.” People like Hitchens think the world would be better if the Christian religion never existed.

On the other side, D. James Kennedy wrote a book entitled “What If Jesus Had Never Been Born?“ subtitled: “The Positive Impact of Christianity in History.”  It relates the contributions that Christianity has made to human civilization. Sure the Church has committed its share of sins, but its good works far outweigh its faults.

Personally I cannot imagine my life without Christ. My life is bound up with Christ. It is no exaggeration to say that Christ is my life. I can honestly say with the apostle Paul, “It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”

For me there is no life without Christ. With Christ is life eternal and abundant. Thank God that he decided that Christmas was worth the price. Christmas was worth the Cross. Love was worth it all. It always is.

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