Christmas is many things to many people: a celebration, a cosmic visit, a time for family traditions. I’d like for us to see it in one more way: Christmas is a communication. It is God saying something to human beings, something that we would have no clue about except that God decided to say it:
“Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:10-12)
God is desperately concerned that we understand the truth about ourselves and about His interest in us. Centuries ago, in an ordinary world, in the midst of all kinds of bad news and at a time when most people had little reason to expect anything good, a baby was born. Through the great void of silence and despair, God shouted a message to us loud and clear.
It was a communication of joyful assurance: “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy…” Why should the angels be singing above this small planet, so insignificant in a huge universe? What could possibly have happened to make the heavens over small Bethlehem split open to reveal a totally different dimension? There was joy in heaven; a host of beings knowing something we humans didn’t yet know—a wonderful thing had taken place in our midst.
It was a communication of grand dimensions: “I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.” This good news and joy incorporates all people everywhere. That straw-filled cubbyhole in Bethlehem has become the doorway to the rest of the world, not only at that time but for all time.
It was a communication of glorious significance: “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” There have been and will be many “saviors.” Many great people have walked this world—leading people to something better, helping them learn a little more truth, teaching them a better way to live. So the birth of a savior was not terribly significant. But this Savior was also the Christ, the promised Messiah. This child was the Savior! This child was “Christ the Lord,” which in Old Testament terms referred to God Himself.
God Himself had come to visit the earth and all the people on it. This indeed was significant news.