Remembering the spirit of Christmas

2010-12-24 00:00

IN the background of the successful hosting of the Football World Cup in South Africa, the global economic recession, the 150 years celebrations of Indians in South Africa, the 16 Days of Activism against Women and Child Abuse, the ever-increasing statistics on social challenges and the expressed need for service delivery, we approach Christmas with the same enthusiasm as always.

What is Christmas?

The improved media awareness campaigns through advertising, highlighting events and goodwill messages excite the masses. All this puts a Christmas greeting on everyone’s lips. Churches everywhere display their talents in interior decorating and public reminders. The media and businesses have always been in the forefront of public display. All of this reflects something unique about Christmas.

Although the birth of Jesus Christ was not spectacular, history was made by his birth and change was inevitable. The Bible and other historical recordings document the traditions and lifestyles before this birthday. How the ages have changed.

In this modern age with technology bringing everything to our fingertips, we should spare a thought for the people of that day, who, in spite of primitive methods, still recognised the birth of Jesus and recorded it as part of history.

While it is true that some sought to kill him, and the Roman governor of that day, Herod, killed Bethlehem’s babies under two, others revered him as “God with us” (Matt.1:23). A few remembered the prophecy that someday a saviour would be born, and saw Jesus as the fulfilment of that prophecy. The people’s reaction to this birth invited historical investigation. It has met the test, as it surely always, inevitably does to inculcate a greater devotion in the heart of every believer to the son of God.

Today the media play the greatest of all Christmas roles, similar when highlighting other faiths and events. Through the broad spectrum of people who are reached by the media, something unique happens at Christmas. Christmas awakens and unites all. One of the evidence-based outcomes of Christmas is this unity. Friend or foe accept Christmas as belonging to them and whether people are rich or poor, Christmas remains sacred.

Jesus invaded our history as God’s intervention in providing the spiritual solution for a desperately needing society. Society is looking beyond life on Earth to find solutions for justice, mercy and peace. Most of the world’s population found this in Jesus.

Christmas commemorates the birth of Christ and symbolically brings love, joy, peace, reconciliation, justice, equality and compassion.

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