The danger in the seasonal celebration is that we cave to sentimentality and rote nostalgia and thus forget that the meek and mild baby in a manger was nothing short of the opening salvo in the kingdom of heaven revolution consisting in God personally invading earth.

We will toss around words this month like “spirit,” “grace,” “peace,” and “hope.” The Bible will not let us have these ideas merely as ideas, as things. They are personal. Thus: “He himself is our peace” (Micah 5:5; Eph. 2:14) and “God is love” (1 John 4:8). Let’s not mess with ethereal virtues, no matter how Christianly gauzed. Leave ethereal virtues to vague saviors. Our Savior is incarnate!

Sinclair Ferguson brings it home:

[R]emember that there isn’t a thing, a substance, or a “quasi-substance” called “grace.” All there is is the person of the Lord Jesus — “Christ clothed in the gospel,” as Calvin loved to put it. Grace is the grace of Jesus. If I can highlight the thought here: there is no “thing” that Jesus takes from Himself and then, as it were, hands over to me. There is only Jesus Himself.

Don’t thingamatize Christmas. Take it personally.

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2 thoughts on “Don’t Thingamatize Christmas”

  1. anonymous says:

    “thus forget that the meek and mild baby in a manger was nothing short of the opening salvo in the kingdom of heaven revolution consisting in God personally invading earth”

    remembering your last Christmastime poem gazing at snow’s loveliness, reflecting on the incredible truth of being of God. Sent this I think, so re-sending, to re-enjoy: ttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpHiAmL8-b0&feature=related

    Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Phil 2:5-8

    (and now)Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? Let a man regard us as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God; that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 1 Cor 3:16; 4:1;Col 1:26-27

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Jared C. Wilson


Jared C. Wilson is the pastor of Middletown Springs Community Church in Middletown Springs, Vermont. You can follow him on Twitter.

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