In Touch Daily Devotional 
by Dr. Charles Stanley

Friday December 23, 2005

The Christ of Christmas

Matthew 16:13-17

 

Most people are comfortable talking about God, but the name Jesus Christ stirs up considerable animosity. In the last decade, we have seen a concerted effort to remove any mention of Him from society, particularly at this time of year. In many districts, children are not allowed to sing religious carols in school, and manger scenes are disappearing from public arenas. As believers, we cannot allow the name of Christ to be stolen from our Christmas. When we understand who He is, we can defend His place in our lives.

 

Jesus made some amazing claims about Himself, including that He is the Son of God. Many people will concede that He was a great prophet or teacher but refuse to acknowledge His real identity. Either Jesus is everything He claims, or He is a liar. A prophet who professes to be divine when he is not, is a false prophet.

 

Christ goes one step further and tells His followers that He is the only way to the Father (John 14:6). He promises eternal life if we place our trust in Him. No amount of good works will get a person into heaven; only a relationship with God through His Son can accomplish that.

 

Jesus tells us that the Father is greater than He is, but that does not negate His importance (John 14:28). Only through His sacrifice can we enter the presence of a holy God. We tend to think of Easter as the time of year when we celebrate Jesus’ redemptive death and resurrection. But Christmas is an equally important time to remember why He came. Without Christ, there is no Christmas.