The Christmas Story by James Merritt

The Christmas Story
James Merritt
Matthew 1:21

INTRODUCTION

1. Several years ago, I cut this article out of the newspaper because the headline caught my attention. It read as follows: ''In Support Of Revolt, Bethlehem Cancels Christmas Festivities.'' The article went on to say:

''This Palestinian town where Jesus was born, has cancelled its traditional joyous Christmas celebrations in solidarity, with the year long revolt against Israeli occupation.
''We don't see any reason to celebrate Christmas,'' Deputy Hannah Nasser said Monday. ''We have to show concern for our dead and our detainees.'' [1]

2. Now one thing stands out about that quote. That is, this mayor, on the one hand, does not understand the reason for the season. On the other hand, he doesn't understand that you can cancel the season, but not the Savior. In fact, He is the reason for the season.

3. Now how would you feel if somebody said to you they saw absolutely no reason to celebrate your birthday? If people treated you on your birthday the way this world treats the Lord Jesus on His birthday, I believe it is safe to say that you would be deeply offended. How many people do you know who have parties thrown in honor of their birth, and yet they never even get invited!

4. I heard about a little boy who wrote this letter to his grandmother:

Dear Grandmother,
I'm very sorry that I forgot your birthday last week. It would serve me right if you forgot mine next Tuesday.
Love,
Johnny

5. It is amazing to see how conveniently we forget that Christmas is indeed His birthday. Recently, Muzak ranked the most popular Christmas songs by number of the versions available on its holiday channel, and here were the winners:

1. The Christmas Song (''Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire...'')
2. ''White Christmas''
3. ''Winter Wonderland''
4. ''Silver Bells''
5. ''I'll Be Home for Christmas''
5. (Tie) ''Jingle Bells''[2]

Now think about it. The most popular songs on this holiday cha ...


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