1 Timothy 1:15
A number of years ago I remember seeing the abbreviation Xmas for Christmas. It seems like I don’t see that around very much anymore. And I wonder why. I wonder if maybe Christian sentiment has turned against that term and kind of viewed it as taking the Christ out of Christmas. And so haven’t wanted to see stores use it or anybody else.
It’s a bit ironic though, if you think about it, because the name Christ or the word Christ in the Greek language begins with a letter that looks almost identical to an English X. So really it’s not that inappropriate for us to call it Xmas referring to Christos or Christ. So this time of year though it is important for us to remember to keep the Christ in Christmas.
Why? The word Christ in the Greek language refers to Messiah. Refers to the Anointed One of God. How important is he? Well in our lesson for today. In First Timothy chapter 1 verse 15 that tells us this.
This saying is trustworthy and worthy of full acceptance: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners,” of whom I am the worst. (1 Timothy 1:15)
This time of year were filled with such nostalgia and joy as we like to set up our decorations, as we like to go shopping for our gifts, as we hear the Christmas music, as we bake special goodies, as we spend time with friends and family. But the real reason for us to have joy this time of year is because of the birth of the Christ. The one who came into the world to save sinners like us.
It’s been said that this time of year brings out the best in people. And how true it is as we see people acting in a much more kind, and generous, and selfless way toward each other. If only it was this way for the other 11 months of the year. We know what happens after Christmas so often we slide right back into that selfishness and that greed and that unloving attitude that we have. All of this of course is sin. This is the reason the Christ has come. Jesus came into the world to save sinners like you and me. People filled with sin and selfishness. He’s come to make us right with God so that we need not fear God’s judgment for our sin, but know that there is peace because of this little baby who was born in Bethlehem on Christmas.
Whether you call it Xmas or Christmas. To the Christ in Christmas. Especially focusing on him as your Savior from sin. That’s true reason to have joy this Christmas season, amen.