"Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name."
Rev. R.J.Barber, Jr. speaks about the history of Tabernacle Time, the nation's oldest daily religious radio broadcast. Video recorded June 20, 2016.
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“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.” Luke 2:10-12
Please allow me to begin by saying that I enjoy many of the ways we celebrate this season. I take pleasure in the brilliant lights on storefronts and our trees. I get pleasure from seeing children open their brightly wrapped presents. I admit, I like to open a few of my own. I can’t help but reflect on my own childhood when my brothers, sisters, and I would open our small gifts.
However, we must never allow those things to distract us from the greatest gift of all, the true reason for our celebration. In doing so, let us consider some of the contrasts of that first Christmas, compared to some of our traditions.
Jesus was not presented lying underneath a tree. God presented His own Son, lying in a manger, born in a cattle barn if you will. God did not present His Son wrapped in a glittering package. He is found wrapped in “swaddling clothes”, a simple dressing of common material. Wise men brought their gifts to Him, not to each other. So, even as we go about our usual preparations let us hold fast to the manger child who is Lord of Lords and King of Kings.