The Christmas Gift

“Thanks be to God for His Indescribable Gift!” – 2 Corinthians 9:15

At this special time of year our thoughts turn to giving.  For many social service organizations such as the Salvation Army, local rescue missions and many others that render aid to the poor and those in need, this time of year is important because they receive much of their annual income during the days and weeks leading up to Christmas.  Retail stores receive the lion’s share of their income for the entire year during this time.  We purchase items to give as gifts to those we love – friends, relatives, children and even strangers we don’t know out of love and concern for our fellow-man.  The giver gives gifts he or she thinks the givee will want or need.  Many decry the commercialization of the holiday season.  Nevertheless, givers want to give.  There is a spirit of joy during this time as we give gifts to one another.  Because we are made in the image of our Creator, it may be that it is during this season of giving that we are most like our Creator who literally “wrote the book,” on giving, (the Bible).  However, our Creator and God gave the greatest gift of all to mankind – the precious gift of himself by sending his only Son, Jesus Christ, gift wrapping him not in pretty, colorful paper and bows, but instead, in swaddling clothes, in the form of a man, just like ourselves.  Instead of putting him under a Christmas tree however, He placed Him in a manger.

As I write this, I realize I am trying to “describe” for you what the Bible calls, “indescribable.”  I will do my best with the scripture verses to follow:

Romans 5:15 & Following – “But the gift is not like the trespass, For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, (Adam), how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many!  Again, the gift of God is not like the result of the one man’s sin, (Adam’s); The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification.  For if, by the trespass of the one man, (Adam), death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive, (those who believe in Christ), God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.”

Notice from the verses above how often “the gift” is mentioned.  By sending the greatest gift of all to the world, ( His Son, Jesus Christ), God gave to us the most valuable and precious of all – gifts of grace, forgiveness and righteousness, salvation and life – both abundant life in the here and now and eternal life forever.  These, the most expensive gifts, came at great cost to the creator of the universe, sending His very own son to give up his life for us.  The apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the Ephesians, in chapter three, verse 8, that he was given grace to preach to the Gentiles (you and me), the “unsearchable riches of Christ.”  And that, “In Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.”    Paul also wrote in the same letter, the same chapter and just a few verses later (vs. 20), “now to him who is able to do immeasureably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us….”  These matters are deep – deeper than the ocean – deeper than our thoughts can comprehend .  These gifts of God are unsearchable – greater and deeper than our wildest imaginations can comprehend!  We have an awesome, amazing, wonderful God!

In the first chapter of the letter to the Ephesians, Paul writes to the believers there that he “keeps asking” that God would give them (and us), “the spirit of wisdom and revelation,” so that we may “know him better.”  He also prayed that the, “eyes of our hearts” would be enlightened” so that we would “know the hope to which he has called us, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.”  I know people who have received great wealth because of an inheritance.  Imagine the inheritance the Creator of the universe has in reserve for his children, those who believe in and have faith in Him and love Him.  God’s word says, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him..,” (I Corinthians 2:9).

A gift must be received with humility and gratitude.  The receiver must understand it is being offered from a heart of love.  Again and again in the letter to the Ephesians and in many other places in God’s word to us, (the Bible), the word “love” is written.  Many think of the word as a thing of weakness.  It is not!  It is a word of beauty and strength.  It is the most important value to God, (I Cor. 13:13).  It is the source of His Gift – His Son Jesus Christ.  Have you gladly and with gratitude received from our Great God, this most valuable and precious gift of all?  And by accepting the gift of His Son, He also gives the deep and unsearchable gifts of power, faith, spiritual riches, strength, hope, access to God, abundant life and life forever with Him in paradise.  If the answer is no – why not accept His precious gift right now?  Pick up the telephone of your heart right now and call the Lord.  He will answer the call.  With Him there is no voicemail.  Ask Jesus, God’s Son, to come into your heart and live there – to forgive you and change you to become like Him.  Then you will be “born again,” (John 3:3) and will have received the greatest Christmas gift of all – no matter what time of year it is!