There are dozens of stories, shows, and advertisements around us telling us to find the “meaning of Christmas.” Unfortunately, most of them miss the mark, illustrating that “true meaning” as appreciating your family and friends, finding some sort of inner peace and contentment, being a good and caring person, or enjoying one’s self in the excitement and pleasures of the holidays.
As Charles Schultz, via Charlie Brown, wrote, “Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?” Linus does well in his answer,
“Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you what Christmas is all about. And the angel said unto them, Fear not, for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you this day is born in the City of Bethlehem, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; you shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel, a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace, good will toward men’ (Luke 2:10). That is what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”
What is the reason for this holiday? It is the birth of our Savior and the promised salvation that He brought. Articles 1 through 5 of the first head of the Canons of Dordt illustrate the true blessedness and joy of Christmas.
Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. –Romans 3:19
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; -Romans 3:23
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. –Romans 6:23
In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. –1 John 4:9
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
How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! –Romans 10:14-15
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: -Ephesians 2:8
That is what Christmas is all about.