Thursday, December 24, 2020

A Blessed Christmas To All

And they went with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they saw it they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; and all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them. (Luke 2: 16-20)

"Here is a man who was born in an obscure village as the child of a peasant woman. He grew up in another obscure village. He worked in a carpenter shop until he was thirty and then for three years was an itinerant preacher. He never wrote a book. He never held an office. He never owned a home. He never had a family. He never went to college. He never put his foot inside a big city. He never traveled two hundred miles from the place where he was born. He never did one of the things that usually accompany greatness. He had no credentials but himself. He had nothing to do with this world except the naked power of his divine manhood. While still a young man the tide of popular opinion turned against him. His friends ran away. One of them denied him. Another betrayed him. He was turned over to his enemies. He went through the mockery of a trial. He was nailed upon the cross between two thieves. His executioners gambled for the only piece of property he had on earth while he was dying, and that was his coat. When he was dead, he was taken down and laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend. Nineteen wide centuries have come and gone and today he is the center of the human race and the leader of the column of progress. I am far within the mark when I say that all the armies that ever marched, and all the navies that were ever built, and all the parliaments that ever sat and all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not affected the life of man upon the earth as powerfully as has this one solitary life.”             

Excerpts of a sermon in 1926 by Reverend James Allan Francis

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Blessed Is The Lord, Creator Of Heaven And Earth

 Once again this is the time of year when the Christian world celebrates the birth of Christ. 

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Hail, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus." (Luke 1:26-31)

The sixth month in the Hebrew calendar is “Elul” (Aug - September). Most pregnancies last nine months which would place the birth of Jesus in “Lyar” (April - May). 

The early church in Rome incorporated the Pagan Winter Solstice and chose December as the appropriate time to celebrate the birth of Christ commonly referred to as Christmas. Alas most of the nominal “Christian” world  has taken to heart the fabricated story of Saint Nicolas, replete with gift giving and all the lust for crass materialism that it entails. This attitude relegates the birth of Christ as merely peripheral rather than the greatest and most significant event to ever take place in the history of the universe.


The prophet Isaiah had foreseen the coming of the Messiah countless generations before the birth of Jesus.

Who has believed what we have heard? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For he grew up before him like a young plant,

and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or comeliness that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. (Isaiah 53: 1-2)

Jesus grew up in front of God His Father, and appeared as just another little boy with no remarkable physical attributes. However later as an adult he would offer up his own life as a sacrifice for the sins of the world. 

He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. Yet it was the will of the Lord to bruise him; he has put him to grief; when he makes himself an offering for sin, he shall see his offspring, he shall prolong his days; the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand;
(Isaiah 53: 3-6,10)

It was the will of who? It was the will of God the Father in heaven to put Jesus His son through suffering and death, when he made himself, God incarnate, an offering for the sins of the world to satisfy the covenant between Himself and all of mankind.

Earlier Jesus had said, “I and the Father are one.” (John 10: 30). This  and other statements clarify the divinity of Jesus the Christ as the incarnation of God Himself in human form.

Following his death and resurrection as He appeared to the apostles and said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also; henceforth you know him and have seen him.”

( John 14: 6-7)

It is interesting to note that no other world religion has anyone who left His place in heaven and was born into this world as a man and who selflessly died, was buried and rose again from the dead to offer salvation and a right relationship between man and his creator. 

As one looks around and surveys the world in turmoil and tumult in all the nations, it may become evident that the end of the age and the return of Christ is close at hand. It’s time to either acknowledge Christ and ask Him to become personal Lord and Savior, to turn away and refuse is to suffer the eternal consequences.


God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1Thessalonians 5: 9)