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This letter is to wish you a happy time at Christmas. What a time it is, of giving and receiving presents, and the excitement of little children! It is also a time for families to get together and, of course, a special Christmas dinner. For some people, however, it is a time of loneliness and memories of loved ones. We are not unmindful of such people. It can be exhausting; nevertheless, we would not wish to let it pass by. The festive occasion is enjoyable, and it is a lovely sight to see shops decorated and fairy lights along the streets.

In my mind, I separate this enjoyment from the spiritual and religious reasons for Christmas which we remember at this time of the year. After all, the name Christ is still in the word Christmas.

Let us pause for a moment and think about the greatest event that happened in this world, and the greatest gift that a person could ever have. It is God who is behind this and we all ultimately have to meet our Creator. We must remember that we have a soul that is incapable of dying and continues to live forever, even though our bodies die. In the light of this, it is essential that we consider the time when we shall meet God. We do well to give this some thought, and what God has to say to us as individuals. It is again worth noting that God has a character, a personality and a will. He has many qualities and abilities but has chosen one of these as His crown - and that is His holiness. In the love of His heart, He has devised a way whereby men and women may come into a relationship with Him. As we are, we are far removed from the Lord and that is because of our unworthiness and, indeed, our sin – however well we have hidden our sin. It is easy to conclude that we will not be accepted by God or ever have a place in Heaven, and that it will be impossible for us to have fellowship with a pure God.

We come now to the ‘gift’: ‘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’ (John 3.16). He has sent His sinless Son into this world to rescue people like ourselves from a terrible destination. The word we use for this divine intervention is ‘incarnation’, that is, the Lord Jesus Christ, His Son, while retaining His deity, took on human flesh and became one of us. His humanity, however, had this great difference from ours in that He was without sin. It is as if the Lord Jesus Christ had one hand in His Father’s hand and the other firmly holding ours in order to bring us together. That is exactly the mission of the Lord Jesus Christ.

We come now to explain how this can happen in our experience. It is at a place called Calvary that a great event took place. It was there on the Cross that Jesus Christ was willing to be punished for our sin to meet the demands of the holy law of God and satisfy God’s justice.  The physical suffering is there, but there is something else. It is the wrath of God against sin which the Son of God took in our place. In this great act of mercy, the debt is paid in full, a debt we could never pay.

 All these great spiritual benefits can be received through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ: then we are forgiven, because He is punished in our place and He counts His perfect life as if it were ours. What a gift! It is this that fills Christmas with joy and our hearts with hope. Where do you stand in all this? Pause, consider and put your trust in Him.  In this great transaction, God becomes your Father and Heaven your home. In other words, you have been reborn and now you are a child of God.

Hail, the heaven-born Prince of Peace!
Hail, the Sun of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings,
Risen with healing in His wings.
Mild He lays His glory by,
Born that man no more may die,
Born to raise the sons of earth,
Born to give them second birth.

May the Lord bless you at this Christmas time.


Letters to the Soul