Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The True Christmas Story...the Story We're Already In

“Not a Fable”

“Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.” Lk.1:1-4….

“We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.” 2 Pet. 1:16

The Biblical Christmas story is real history, it’s not a “Christmas Shoes” kind of story (e.g., a sentimental story of something that may or may not have happened, whether it did or didn’t doesn’t matter, you can still ‘learn the lesson’ or apply the ‘moral’ of the story…)

Christianity is the religion that insist that it rests upon what really happened, and that whether what it affirms as having happened really did happen, makes all the difference in the world. It matters crucially to the truth and claim that Christianity makes (1 Cor. 15:12-19; 2 Peter 1:16; 1 Jn.1:1ff.; Jn.20:30-32; Lk.1:1-4; cp. Acts 1:1-4). And that’s why you find the 'witness/eyewitness' theme throughout the New Testament (Lk. 24:45-49; Jn. 20:30-31; Acts 1:8; 4:20; 1 Cor. 15:14-19; Rev. 1:5; 3:14).

And think about it: how do we know anything that we know and believe about history? We know and believe it because we believe in the ‘witness/testimony’ of others who were there at the time.

The Bible is story, yes, but it is a story interpreted and applied by God himself (cp. 1 Jn. 5:9-13 regarding God’s own ‘witness/testimony’ concerning His Son).

The basic Christian message is NEWS – it’s reporting about what really happened (Lk.1:1-4), combined with a God-given explanation of what those events meant, and still mean today.

“Christ died…” that’s story/history/news “…for our sins…” that’s inspired interpretation and explanation... "according to the Scriptures" -- and the Scriptures faithfully bear witness to Christ (1 Cor. 15:1ff.; Jn. 5:39)

That a baby was born in Bethlehem is news…it happened in history. It really happened. But the Bible goes further, telling us who he was and what he had come to do…and that’s what makes it Gospel – Good News.

"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord." (Lk.2:11)

And so the main reason a person should embrace Christianity, and become a Christian, believing in Christ – is because this Good News is really true, it really happened, and Jesus Christ is just who the Bible and the Gospel say he is – Savior, Christ/Messiah, Lord!

And the Christmas Story is a Story that always involves each of us, and always requires a response (Matt.28:18ff.; Acts 2:36ff.; Jn. 3:16)

In fact, the Biblical story is a story we’re all already in…. And in this Story, in the real and true history of God that is the history of our world, Jesus is Savior, so are to trust Him, and He is Lord, so we are to give Him our whole-souled allegiance.

No comments: