Most children nowadays seem to connect the above truck and Santa Claus with Christmas, I even seen one for Aldi supermarkets and The John Lewis advert (and yes as a young Christian I to also thought santa was real until one year my mother and father decided to put central heating in the house blocking off the chimney.
Whilst I am out carolling each year with The Salvation Army Band I am always amazed by the amount of people adults and children alike stop and listen even if it is for a few moments.
Let us not forget that ‘Jesus is the reason for the season’ a baby born to Mary and Joseph in a stable in Bethlehem
Mathew 1 V 21 “She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”
39-40 Leaving there, he went, as he so often did, to Mount Olives. The disciples followed him. When they arrived at the place, he said, “Pray that you don’t give in to temptation.”
41-44 He pulled away from them about a stone’s throw, knelt down, and prayed, “Father, remove this cup from me. But please, not what I want. What do you want?” At once an angel from heaven was at his side, strengthening him. He prayed on all the harder. Sweat, wrung from him like drops of blood, poured off his face.
45-46 He got up from prayer, went back to the disciples and found them asleep, drugged by grief. He said, “What business do you have sleeping? Get up. Pray so you won’t give in to temptation.”
47-48 No sooner were the words out of his mouth than a crowd showed up, Judas, the one from the Twelve, in the lead. He came right up to Jesus to kiss him. Jesus said, “Judas, you would betray the Son of Man with a kiss?”
49-50 When those with him saw what was happening, they said, “Master, shall we fight?” One of them took a swing at the Chief Priest’s servant and cut off his right ear.
51 Jesus said, “Let them be. Even in this.” Then, touching the servant’s ear, he healed him.
52-53 Jesus spoke to those who had come—high priests, Temple police, religion leaders: “What is this, jumping me with swords and clubs as if I were a dangerous criminal? Day after day I’ve been with you in the Temple and you’ve not so much as lifted a hand against me. But do it your way—it’s a dark night, a dark hour.”
I wonder how many of us will get Christmas cards with the two different terms on them 1. Merry Christmas and 2. Happy Xmas.
According to the dictionary the meaning of Merry Christmas is: The real meaning of “Merry Christmas” is, to be full of absolute joy because God Himself, knowing none of us could *ever* get free of sin ourselves, provided the way for our salvation. It is only through God that we can obtain Holiness because none of us are able to cleanse ourselves to the point of pleasing God.
Whereas Xmas (also X-mas) is a common abbreviation of the word Christmas. It is sometimes pronounced, but Xmas, and variants such as Xtemass, originated as handwriting abbreviations for the typical pronunciation. The “X” comes from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the Greek word Christós (Χριστός), which became Christ in English. The suffix -mas is from the Latin-derived Old English word for Mass.
Personally I prefer the first one of the two
A lot of kids these days are brought up to believe that Santa and toys are ” The reason for the season” We must remember as Christians that Jesus is ” The reason for the season”
21 A certain man from Cyrene, Simon, the father of Alexander and Rufus,was passing by on his way in from the country, and they forced him to carry the cross.22 They brought Jesus to the place called Golgotha (which means “the place of the skull”).23 Then they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, but he did not take it.24 And they crucified him. Dividing up his clothes, they cast lots to see what each would get.
25 It was nine in the morning when they crucified him.26 The written notice of the charge against him read: the king of the Jews.
27 They crucified two rebels with him, one on his right and one on his left. [a]29 Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads and saying, “So! You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days,30 come down from the cross and save yourself!”31 In the same way the chief priests and the teachers of the law mocked him among themselves. “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself!32 Let this Messiah, this king of Israel, come down now from the cross, that we may see and believe.” Those crucified with him also heaped insults on him.
The Death of Jesus
33 At noon, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon.34 And at three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).
ALAS! and did my Saviour bleed,
And did my sovereign die?
Did he devote that sacred head
For such a worm as I?
2 Was it for sins that I have done
He suffered on the tree?
Amazing pity, grace unknown,
And love beyond degree!
3 Well might the sun in darkness hide
And shut his glories in,
When Christ, the mighty Maker, died
For man, the creature?s sin.
4 Dear Saviour, I can ne?er repay
The debt of love I owe!
Here, Lord, I give myself away;
?Tis all that I can do.
Chorus Remember me, remember me,
O Lord, remember me;
Remember, Lord, thy dying groans,
And then remember me.
At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,
And the burden of my heart rolled away,
It was there by faith I received my sight,
And now I am happy all the day!
1 In you, Lord, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame; deliver me in your righteousness. 2 Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me. 3 Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me. 4 Keep me free from the trap that is set for me, for you are my refuge. 5 Into your hands I commit my spirit; deliver me, Lord, my faithful God.
6 I hate those who cling to worthless idols; as for me, I trust in the Lord. 7 I will be glad and rejoice in your love, for you saw my affliction and knew the anguish of my soul. 8 You have not given me into the hands of the enemy but have set my feet in a spacious place.
9 Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am in distress; my eyes grow weak with sorrow, my soul and body with grief. 10 My life is consumed by anguish and my years by groaning; my strength fails because of my affliction,[b] and my bones grow weak. 11 Because of all my enemies, I am the utter contempt of my neighbors and an object of dread to my closest friends— those who see me on the street flee from me. 12 I am forgotten as though I were dead; I have become like broken pottery. 13 For I hear many whispering, “Terror on every side!” They conspire against me and plot to take my life.
14 But I trust in you, Lord; I say, “You are my God.” 15 My times are in your hands; deliver me from the hands of my enemies, from those who pursue me. 16 Let your face shine on your servant; save me in your unfailing love. 17 Let me not be put to shame, Lord, for I have cried out to you; but let the wicked be put to shame and be silent in the realm of the dead. 18 Let their lying lips be silenced, for with pride and contempt they speak arrogantly against the righteous.
19 How abundant are the good things that you have stored up for those who fear you, that you bestow in the sight of all, on those who take refuge in you. 20 In the shelter of your presence you hide them from all human intrigues; you keep them safe in your dwelling from accusing tongues.
21 Praise be to the Lord, for he showed me the wonders of his love when I was in a city under siege. 22 In my alarm I said, “I am cut off from your sight!” Yet you heard my cry for mercy when I called to you for help.
23 Love the Lord, all his faithful people! The Lord preserves those who are true to him, but the proud he pays back in full. 24 Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.
1 My times are in thy hand; my God, I wish them there; my life, my friends, my soul, I leave entirely to thy care.
2 My times are in thy hand, whatever they may be; pleasing or painful, dark or bright, as best may seem to thee.
3 My times are in thy hand; why should I doubt or fear? My Father’s hand will never cause his child a needless tear.
4 My times are in thy hand, Jesus the Crucified; those hands my cruel sins had pierced are now my guard and guide.
18 Loners who care only for themselves spit on the common good.
2 Fools care nothing for thoughtful discourse; all they do is run off at the mouth.
3 When wickedness arrives, shame’s not far behind; contempt for life is contemptible.
4 Many words rush along like rivers in flood, but deep wisdom flows up from artesian springs.
5 It’s not right to go easy on the guilty, or come down hard on the innocent.
6 The words of a fool start fights; do him a favor and gag him.
7 Fools are undone by their big mouths; their souls are crushed by their words.
8 Listening to gossip is like eating cheap candy; do you really want junk like that in your belly?
9 Slack habits and sloppy work are as bad as vandalism.
10 God’s name is a place of protection— good people can run there and be safe.
11 The rich think their wealth protects them; they imagine themselves safe behind it.
12 Pride first, then the crash, but humility is precursor to honour.
13 Answering before listening is both stupid and rude.
14 A healthy spirit conquers adversity, but what can you do when the spirit is crushed?
15 Wise men and women are always learning, always listening for fresh insights.
16 A gift gets attention; it buys the attention of eminent people.
17 The first speech in a court case is always convincing— until the cross-examination starts!
18 You may have to draw straws when faced with a tough decision.
19 Do a favour and win a friend forever; nothing can untie that bond.
20 Words satisfy the mind as much as fruit does the stomach; good talk is as gratifying as a good harvest.
21 Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit—you choose.
22 Find a good spouse, you find a good life— and even more: the favor of God!
23 The poor speak in soft supplications; the rich bark out answers.
24 Friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family.
(WOMEN) What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! (ALL) O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer. (MEN) Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer. (ALL) Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer. (ALL) Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care? Precious Saviour, still our refuge; take it to the Lord in prayer. Do thy friends despise, forsake thee? Take it to the Lord in prayer! In his arms he’ll take and shield thee; thou shalt find a solace there.
11 Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade others. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. 12 We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart. 13 If we are “out of our mind,” as some say, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.
16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin[b] for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
God has given to us a new, forgiven life in him. We have no need, therefore to be anxious if we Turn our eyes upon Jesus as it says in the song. The past cannot make us afraid, for we know that that our sins are forgiven.
The present need not trouble us, for we know that the whole world is in God’s hands.
“Do everything in the name of Jesus Giving Thanks“. A thankful spirit will triumph over many difficulties, and will save us from many more