In a message on Christmas, John MacArthur tells the story of a wealthy Boston family who invited friends and family to a christening. The party was to take place at their magnificent mansion in celebration of the birth of this precious little one. A half-hour into the party, when it was time to present the baby, the mother made a tragic discovery. The large bed on which the child had been lying fast asleep was piled high with the coats of the guests. Tragically, the baby had been smothered and suffocated by the pile of coats carelessly discarded.
Reflecting on this sad scene, MacArthur argues that it illustrates what the world has done to Christ at Christmas. He notes, “Lost is the realization that Christmas is first of all a celebration of the birth of the Savior. He is all but forgotten, cruelly and thoughtlessly smothered in the haste and commotion.”
How true and yet how tragic! How easy it is amidst the haste and commotion of Christmas to overlook and underappreciate the glories of this season and the wonders of God’s love for us in Christ (John 3:16; 1 John 4:9). With places to go, parties to attend, and presents to buy, we too easily rush by the very meaning and miracle of the Advent. And yet in a way, Christmas has always been a rush. Going back to that first Christmas we encounter the first “Christmas rush,” with the shepherds making haste to get to Bethlehem to find Christ (Luke 2:11-12, 16). That was the first Christmas rush, and it reminds us that if we are going to rush around, let’s make sure we make haste to seek out Jesus.
Let’s not rush past this great and grand turning point in history. This was the high-water mark of human history - when in the fullness [the reaping moment] of time, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, to redeem those who were under the Law (Gal. 4:4-5). This is the moment that ultimately divides history and determines destiny! Let us then give time and thought to this marvelous moment within time!
Let’s not rush past the stupendous reality that God, within time, became one of us in Christ for all time (John 1:14; Phil. 2:5-11). At Christmas, God in Christ added human nature to His divine name. The invisible God became visible, the Ancient of Days was born in a moment, and He who made all things was made flesh. This reality is both confounding and comforting (1 Tim. 3:16, Heb. 2:14-18).
Let’s us not rush past the wonderful truth that God become one of us, that we might be one with Him (2 Cor. 5:19-21). Christmas is about God reconciling the world to Himself! Paul tells us that Christ, who made everything, was made flesh, that upon the cross He might be made sin for us, so that through faith in Him and His work on the cross on our behalf, we might be made right with God.
Remember, the real Christmas rush is about seeking out Jesus!