Thursday, November 23, 2017
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Tomorrow, the world will celebrate Christmas Day! Christmas (i.e. the Mass of Christ), in the Christian Church, celebrates the festival of the nativity of Jesus Christ. He was born on earth on this day.


Christ is the title given in the New Testament to Jesus of Nazareth, equivalent to the Hebrew “Messiah.” The earliest body of Gospel tradition, represented by Mark no less than by the non- Marcan document embodied in the first and third gospels, begins, not with the birth of Jesus, but with his baptism, and this order of accretion of gospel matter is faithfully reflected in the time order of the invention of feasts. The great Church adopted Christmas much later than epiphany and before the 5th century there was no consensus on the exact date.

The earliest identification of the 25th of December as the Birthday of Christ is in a passage of The Ophilus of Antioch, preserved in Latin by the Magdiburg centuriators, to the effect that the Gauls contended that, as they celebrated the birth of the Lord on the 25th day of December, whatever day of the week it might be, so they ought to celebrate the Pascha on the 25th of March when the resurrection befell. The next mention of the 25th of December is in Hippolytus` commentary on Daniel. Jesus, he says, was born on the 25th of December, a Wednesday, in the forty-second year of Augustus. The next, and more certain mention of this date is in the writings of a Latin chronographer of A.D.354 which, in English, read as follows: Lord Jesus was born on the 25th of December, on the 15th day of the new moon.

Christianity is the religion which accepts Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, embracing all who profess and call themselves Christians, the term derived from his formal title which in Greek means the “Anointed.” Christianity has been classed by the students of the science of religion as a universal religion as it proclaims itself as intended for all, without distinction of race or caste, and as in possession of absolute truth. In fact, Christianity has widely been accepted by varied races in very different stages of culture, and it has maintained itself through a long succession of centuries in lands where the transformations in political structure, the revolutions in social conditions and the changes in science and philosophy, have been numerous and extreme.

Christianity is the religion of a wide variety of races. This is because Jesus represented the Will of God. The saints would say, "Thus saith the Lord”, Jesus would say, "Amen, I say to you." It is through His consciousness that we can understand His mission and the career of his disciples. The prophets up to John foretold the coming of the Kingdom (Matt.xi.11 13;Luke xvi, 16), but Jesus opened its doors and made entrance therein possible. Where He is, there is light and thus, those who follow Him are God's children, and those who refuse his message are left outside in darkness. He is to sit as enthroned, judge and king, and by him is the future of men determined. (Matt.xxv 31.f; Mark xiii, 26) Indeed, it was his teaching, which created the Church.
Great as were his words, greater was His personality. His disciples followed him and felt free from sin and fear, and under the influence of a Divine Power.

Jesus refused to conform to the accepted ideas of establishing a Kingdom. He wrought miracles, it is true, because miraculous signs were proof of his Messianic character. (Mark viii,12)The tradition of the people implied the sudden appearance of a Messiah, but Jesus made no claims to a supernatural origin and was content to be known as the son of Joseph and Mary (Mark vi 3-4). His kingdom was not to be set up by wonders and miraculous powers, nor is it to be established by force (Matt.xxvi.52) Such means would have contradicted the fundamental purpose of God sending His only begotten son to earth, for the kingdom of loving service can only be established by loving service. And as God is love, He can be revealed not by prodigies of power but by a love that is faithful unto death. At times, even the disciples of Jesus could not grasp totally the simplicity and profoundness of his message; still less his opponents. His death on the cross, and then his resurrection, instilled in his followers a firm conviction to follow his teachings. His person and mission assumed the first place in their affection and thinking.

He had been to them a prophet. Mighty in word and deed, but he now becomes to them The Messiah: Christ. It is now his person, which assumes first place, and faith and acceptance of him - crucified and risen -as Messiah. Hence his followers acquired the name Christians from the Greek form of the word. Christianity, as a religion, is, on the one hand, the adoration of God, that is of the highest and noblest and, this highest and noblest as conceived not under forms of power or force but in the form of ethical self-devotion as embodied in Jesus Christ and, on the other hand, it meets the human requirement of all religions in its dependence, not indeed upon some power but in the belief that which appeals to the soul as worthy of supreme worship is also that in which the soul may, and should , trust , and which shall deliver it from sin and fear of death.

The principles of Christ have stood by men through ages, as indeed was the purpose of the life of Jesus Christ.

The Lord's Prayer in its oldest form is the expression of its faith. Christ's separation, of mankind on the right hand, and, on the left, in accordance with their fellow men, is its own judgment of the right to be a true Christian. To be worthy of one of those who believe in Jesus and have believed and trusted in God and love humanity.

Christianity believes that the life of such a man is blissful which finds its deepest utterance in the words of Christ: " Thou shalt love the Lord and thy neighbour as thyself." The life which expresses its profoundest faith in the words Christ taught it to pray: "Our Father.” The life which finds its highest rule of conduct in the words of its first and greatest interpreter, "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus our Lord''.

May the winter’s nights of every human being, be filled with the warmth of the Spirit of Christmas!

 

Comments 

 
#1 paintball 2017-09-17 06:21
I was wondering if you ever considered changing the structure of
your website? Its very well written; I love what
youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more
in the way of content so people could connect with it better.
Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or two pictures.
Maybe you could space it out better?
Quote
 

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