How Jewish Is Christmas?
I would expect Dr. Luke, the only Gentile writer in the New Testament, to forget about all the Jewish stuff in the original Christmas story. Instead, he makes the Jewish involvement center stage when Zachariah, the father of John the Baptist and a Jewish priest, is finally able to speak again. At his son’s circumcision, he bubbles with enthusiasm about what this means for his Jewish people.
“Blessed be the LORD God of Israel because he has visited and provided redemption for his people. He has raised up a Horn of Salvation for us in the House of David, his child. This is exactly as he spoke from of old through the mouth of his holy prophets, salvation from our enemies and deliverance out of the hand of all who hate us. This salvation demonstrates the loyal mercy of God, the One who has kept his promises to our fathers by remembering his covenant, the oath he swore to our father Abraham.
The fulfillment of this promise gives us the ability to serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all our days because he delivers us from those who hate us. ‘And you, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the LORD to prepare his way, to give the knowledge of salvation to his people, even the forgiveness of their sins. This forgiveness is rooted in the tender mercy of our God. His (the Messiah’s) visit is like the rising of the sun. It shines on all of us living in darkness that is in the shadow of death. It guides our feet in the way of peace.’” Luke 1:68-79
I pray that many Jews might read in Luke’s first century account about the only Messiah who will one day return and deal with the hate and violence against them. But the Son of David is still waiting at the right hand of God before he returns to earth because he wants many more to receive his greatest gift—true divine forgiveness and victory over death. Don’t believe it? Think about that fact that there is only one man in all of human history who actually died and then showed up back on earth alive. He is a Jew and his name is Joshua—Jesus.
Mary and I are praying for your protection during this time of the celebration of the Jewish and Gentile Messiah’s birthday. We are also praying that maybe even at Starbucks you might sit down with a friend who doesn’t know Jesus and say, “Hey, look at this cup. It’s red. Do you know what this color reminds me of, especially during this season?”
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!