At Mobile Text Alerts, we major in communication. Thoughts, sentences, phrases, words—it’s what we’re all about. Most of communication is simply sharing words in a meaningful way, and we know that sharing words with your group is important.
But there is a word that is more important than any other word we could share with our businesses, organizations, and communities. Christmastime is a perfect time to talk about this word, because this word is what Christmas is all about.
This is the word that spoke all of the universe into existence. This is the word that existed before the dawn of time. This is the eternal word that became human—the event we celebrate at Christmas.
The Gospel of John, chapter 1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. … And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
The Word is Jesus Christ. He is God in the flesh, God fully revealing Himself to us by becoming one of us. This is the tremendous significance of the birth of Jesus: God revealing His grace (unearned favor) and truth.
Why do we need God’s grace and truth? Most of us are “good people” who do our best to make a living for ourselves and our families. We try to be honest, try to be decent citizens and spouses and parents and friends. Many of us even go to church, sing the songs, and go through all the rituals. We seem to be doing OK on our own.
But are we really OK?
God says that we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). No, we’re not all murderers or adulterers or rapists by action, but we have harbored hatred and lust and any number of sins in our hearts. We have lied, become angry for no good reason, and are overall driven by selfishness and a desire to please self rather than God. All of this and more makes us unacceptable to God and separates us from a right relationship with Him. “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
The Free Gift
Our sin condemns us to an eternal Hell, but this is why the Word came. He came to offer us the free gift (grace) of eternal life. Romans 5:8 says, “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” In His death, Christ bore the punishment for our sin. It’s not about being a “good person” or working as hard as we can to make ourselves acceptable to God—Christ did not die for us because we were worthy, but He died in spite of our unworthiness. And there’s nothing we can do to earn His forgiveness!
Faith and Works
Romans 10:9 says, “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” It’s all about faith. We must believe what God has said and put our complete trust in what Christ has done. Then He promises to save us from both the penalty of sin (Hell) and from the power of sin to govern all our thoughts, attitudes, and actions.
When we realize this and surrender our lives to Him as Master, He changes us from the inside out. As a result, we do good things out of love for Him rather than out of obligation to try to earn His favor! “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).
This Christmas, consider Jesus. Think about your sin and how it separates you from God. Realize that you cannot earn your way to Him, nor do you need to. The Word came at Christmas to give us a free gift. Won’t you accept it?
“[F]or today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11).