By: Martin Cisneros
I've never liked the spirit of anyone by any remote stretch that fights really hard to take the holidays away from us. Their arguments about commercialism are anarchist political ideas and not sound religious/spiritual arguments. Suddenly this one time of the year they hypocritically oppose coveteousness when they don't generally oppose it in themselves and others the other 364 days of the year anywhere near as passionately and vocally. What about all of the Christians that honestly do find deep meaning in reading the first couple of chapters of Matthew and Luke during this time period? Are we to take that away from them in the name of "the interest on that could have been given to the poor" when you wouldn't have anyway if given the chance?
Most of the people that argue against Christmas never see fit to celebrate His birth during any other time of the year, though a favorite cliche of theirs will be that they celebrate His birth every single day, when with judgment day honesty they really don't. They haven't even had communion since the last time they heard me bring it up! Parents that get snooty about it tend to pass on a Pharisaical spirit or a worse "twice the son of Hell" spirit to their kids that though perhaps not evident to them personally, it still winds up being evident to their classmates at school that think that they're just religious nuts and scrooges trying to take away the special wine that Jesus does seem to turn many people's water into at this time of year. If an Old Covenant deliverer can be present in a basket floating down a river, I have no doubt that the heart of the New Covenant Deliverer can be present in a box flowing from a heart of love from the store to being underneath the Christmas tree at home!
And then you've got the Judas Iscariot argument that some Christians love to throw around that if it's Jesus' birthday, then why are we giving each other presents? Jesus' biggest desires are our wholeness, sanctification, and happiness in union with His heavenly Father. How many of us over the years have wound up getting shoes and socks from somebody, at least once in our lives, during the Christmas holiday? So on this one day of all days Jesus is particularly opposed to our washing of one another's feet and anointing them with our tears with the credit card bills and interest we were going to use on ourselves anyway, if we didn't do it for one another??? Didn't Jesus say that what you've done to the least of these, His brethren, you've done to Him?
Particularly Christians that oppose the tithe are on the thinnest of ice where other Christians are concerned in opposing generocity at this special time of the year. Will the opposition to generocity in the name of being motivated by the Spirit never end? I can already hear the Judas spirit against a child of God being given a diamond ring or some piece of jewelry at this time of the year: "that could have been given to the poor instead!!" That's typically from the very person who does squat for the poor the other 364 days of the year and even steals from the bag of Jesus' ministry in the name of their liberties in Christ so that they wind up selling out some part of His ministry in the earth for 30 pieces of silver in their attempt to replenish the bag of what Jesus is doing in the earth before they get caught. The second His kindness is haulted in someone else's life by the Judas spirit "trying to cover" for what they've denied His ministry every step of the way thus far, it's as though He's crucified again and doubts regarding His being the saviour of Israel re-enter many hearts.
The battle never ends. I can hear the sermons adapted from the epistle of James about show me your faith without your generocity and I'll show you my faith by my generocity! I'm reminded of the wicked servant -- perhaps the wickedest man in the whole Bible -- who buries his talent on the assumption that he has a wicked Master that'll be hard on him because He supposedly reaps where He didn't sow. Nobody in the history of the Creation has ever reaped where they didn't sow! In the Name of His Sovereignty, they were calling Him a thief! Christmas time is one of only two times of the year when you can successfully give cards to your religious fundamentalist friends, neighbors, and enemies celebrating the "Saviour of the World" when much of their Pharisaism against the Saviour of the World message is laid aside and they'll sing "Joy to the World" with you. We should all find or design a really nice Saviour of the World Christmas card with an appropriate "Christmas Scripture" and towards the end of the second week of December we should mail it to everyone we're acquainted with that opposes the Universal Restoration on their religious exclusivity grounds.