The big fella.
Every Christmas the big red starts making his appearance. And so we dust off and roll out the red carpet for our hailed guest at Christmas Carols. News Shows. Adverts. Major festivals. Photo shoots. Sporting events. Pageants. Ceremonies. Parties.
Santa’s social stocks go off the freaking charts.
And amongst all the flashing lights and fan-fare, the true Christmas story appears increasingly irrelevant. God is thrown onto the back-burner. Jesus is once again driven back into his manger on the outskirts of town, as we fill and leave no room or vacancy for the God who came to save the very people who showed him the stiff arm.
It’s not unusual for Jesus to have opposition. Hear that loud and clear. Jesus is no stranger to rejection. Jesus even expected it (John 15:18). But if you’re going to hate on God, at least get your criticisms remotely right. Get it right. See it clear. Don’t mix it up.
Don’t make the mistake of muddying the waters of God himself.
Christmas is an indictment before it becomes a delight. It will not have its intended effect until we feel desperately the need for a Saviour
Here’s the creed.
In Jesus we have a crystal clear image of God. And so if other people or ideas are subtly smuggled into the conversation, we have a muddying of those waters. When the focus is taken off Jesus as our final and decisive image of God, the water pollutes.
And here’s my issue. Some people I meet legitimately see God a heck of a lot like Santa. And I’m not just talking about kids. There are adults I know that have bought into an image of God that is really just Santa in disguise. Sounds stupid. But it’s true.
Santa becomes a tragic distraction when we blur the lines and muddy the waters between him and God. And Santa perpetuates three huge myths about God. Three myths that the very meaning and purpose of Christmas set in motion to abort – once and for all.
It’s time to put Santa on trial.