Six Reasons Why Christmas is a Big Deal!

By Dr. Bob Martin III
Published 1 year ago

CHRISTMAS IS A BIG DEAL Christmas celebrates lesus' birth to the virgin Mary in Bethlehem more than 2000 years ago.

 

I.   What We Celebrate at Christmas

Christmas is a big deal for millions. The reasons vary. It may be:

  • Memories of Christmases past
  • The festive vibrancy of the season
  • The pleasure of giving and receiving gifts
  • The anticipation of being with family

 

But in particular, what about you? If you celebrate Christmas, why is it special to you? If you are a Christian, there is probably one reason, above all, why  Christmas is a big deal.

And that, of course, is the celebration of Jesus’ birth to the virgin Mary in Bethlehem more than 2000 years ago.

 

Binmin Podcast Ep. 15: Virgin Birth | Putting the Fun In…

 

Conversely, like many others, you may not know the “Christmas story.” But that is easily remedied. In order to learn about the virgin birth, specifically read the first chapters of the Gospels of Matthew (1:18–25) and Luke (1:26–38). Together they tell complementary narratives.

  • Firstly, about Jesus’ supernatural conception.
  • And secondly, about his natural birth to Mary in Bethlehem.

 

Ep. 48: Why Is Christmas Such a Big Deal? (1:2)

II.   6 Reasons Why Christmas is a Big Deal

But why should Christmas be a big deal to you personally?

There are at least six reasons why Christmas should affect your life.

Accordingly, they can be remembered by the mnemonic: “SPIDER.”

S: Supernatural invading the Natural World

P: Prophecy Fulfilled

I: Inauguration of God’s Plan

D: Divine Grace

E: Eagerness of Mary & Joseph to obey God

R: Reliable Historical Documents

 

6 Reasons Christmas is a Big Deal "SPIDER" 1. Supernatural invades Natural World 2. Prophecy Fulfilled .Inauguration of God's Plan 4. Divine Grace 5. Eagerness of Mary & Joseph to obey God 6. Reliable Historical Documents

 

 

1.   Reason 1: Supernatural Invading the Natural World

If you grew up repeatedly hearing the Christmas message, the profound message may have become dulled.

On the contrary, you may have been taught Christmas is superstition. However, that belief is incorrect!

Christmas is a big deal because Christianity is comparatively unique among all world religions. In brief, our supernatural God invaded our natural world in human form as a helpless human infant.

  • Jesus (who is God) was supernaturally conceived in human form nine months before his birth.
  • In particular, two terms for this miracle are virgin conception or incarnation

 

Of course, two questions come to mind:

  • Firstly, “How is that possible that God became human?”
  • Secondly, “What does it mean that Jesus is fully God and fully human?”

 

a.   Christmas is a big deal because God became human

Basically, the virgin conception begins with Jesus’ mother.

  • Mary was a young virgin (Luke 1:34) engaged to Joseph (Luke 1:27).
  • God the Father sent the Holy Spirit to miraculously conceive Jesus in Mary (Matt. 1:18–25; Luke 1:34–35)
  • Consequently, she became pregnant without ever having sexual relations (Matt 1:18)

 

Similarly, “incarnation” means “God in human form.” In this case, it refers to Jesus, who is fully God, also becoming human!

 

SUPERNATURAL INVADING THE NATURAL WORLD Jesus (who is God) was " supernaturally conceived by the Holy Spirit

 

How God became human is a mystery that we can never fully comprehend.

  • God is infinite, and we are finite
  • As a matter of fact, the only reason we know it happened is because of Matthew and Luke’s inspired accounts
  • But the truthfulness of both narratives is indicated by their simple and unembellished birth narratives

 

b.   Jesus is fully God and fully human

 

Binmin Podcast Ep. 14: Jesus’s Two Natures | Putting the Fun In…

 

If you are not a Christian, the idea that Jesus is both God and human must seem a surprisingly farfetched belief.

Moreover, you may think Jesus being both God and human is contradictory!

In response, it is true and not contradictory.

In the first place, Jesus is God. He is the Second Person of the Trinity. Consequently, he has a divine nature.

  • Paul undeniably writes Jesus is God in Philippians 2:5–7, “Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men” [emphasis mine]
  • And certainly, Jesus knew he was God (John 6:38; 8:42; 13:3)
  • To illustrate his divine nature, Jesus’ life was marked by miracles. And these miracles began at his conception. And they continued through his life, resurrection, and ascension back to heaven

 

Secondly, Jesus is also fully human. To explain, when the Holy Spirit conceived Jesus, the Lord took on a second perfect human nature (Hebrews 7:26).

  • As a result, he did not inherit a sinful human nature and was able to live a sinless life
  • Yet despite being sinless, Jesus completely identified with humanity. And that includes being tempted, but never sinning (Heb. 4:15)

 

Therefore, Jesus is one Person with two natures (one divine and one human).

In short, he is the perfect God-man Jesus.

 

JESUS IS FULLY GOD & FULLY HUMAN "Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men" (Phil. 2:5-7)

 

2.   Reason 2: Prophecy Fulfilled

 

“Christ” is not Jesus’ last name. Christ means Messiah or “Anointed One.” A critical point often overlooked is that prophecy fulfillment proves Jesus is the Jewish Messiah. For example:

  • There are hundreds of prophecies about the coming Jewish Messiah
  • Jesus fulfills at least 300 prophecies
  • Statistically, that is impossible unless Jesus is the Messiah

 

With this in mind, the virgin birth fulfilled several prophecies from the Old Testament.

 

PROPHECY FULFILLED Matthew 1:22-23 fulfills the prophecy in Isaiah 7:14 Isaiah 9:6-7 prophecies of a coming ruler Micah 5:2 prophecies Jesus' birthplace as Bethlehem

 

 

In particular, Matthew 1:22–23claims the virgin birth fulfills the prophecy in Isaiah 7:14:

  • All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name “Immanuel” (which means, “God with us”)
  • In light of this fulfilled prophecy, as “Immanuel,” Jesus came to carry out God’s plan of salvation (see below)
  • And because Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity, our salvation involves God personally

 

Furthermore, there are other prophecies regarding Jesus’ virgin birth, including:

  • Isaiah 9:6-7 prophecies of a coming ruler
  • Micah 5:2 prophecies Jesus’ birthplace as Bethlehem

 

3.   Reason 3: Inauguration of God’s Final Plan of Salvation

 

Inauguration of God's Plan of Salvation • JESUS' BIRTH USHERED IN GOD'S PLAN OF SALVATION • JESUS CAME TO DELIVER PEOPLE FROM THEIR SINS • JESUS NEEDED TO BE A SINLESS HUMAN TO REPRESENT US JESUS NEEDED TO BE GOD TO HAVE THE POWER TO SAVE US

 

Christmas is a big deal because Jesus’ birth started something unprecedented in world history that subsequently affected all humankind (Luke 1:32–33). The virgin birth:

  • Most importantly, ushered in God’s plan of redemption
  • Explicitly introduced the perfect and final expression of God’s saving love.
  • In short, it began the process of Jesus coming to save people from their sins

 

JESUS WAS BORN TO DIE

 

However, the significance of Jesus’ birth was not fully realized until his death and resurrection.

  • In other words, Jesus was born to die
  • In essence, he was the perfect sacrificial lamb who bore all of humanity’s sins
  • And subsequently, his resurrection proved God accepted his sacrifice
  • Only then does salvation become altogether universally available (Luke 2:32)
  • And by choosing to place our faith in Jesus, we can have our sins forgiven and spend eternity with God

 

Only now, in light of God’s plan, does the importance of Jesus being fully God and fully human become apparent.

Why is that?

Because only Jesus, the perfect God-man, can mediate between God and humanity.

  • Firstly Jesus needed to be God to have the power to save us.
  • Secondly, Jesus also needed to be a sinless human to represent us.

And only through his “blood sacrifice” (Hebrews 9:22) he covered our sins (Romans 5:18–19).

 

4.   Reason 4: Divine Grace.

As an illustration, imagine you did something intentionally or unintentionally to another person that seriously harmed them physically or emotionally. For instance, you:

  • Were driving drunk and ran into another car, killing a family’s child
  • Spread vicious gossip that you later found out was wrong. But it irreparably damaged the person’s reputation

And despite how sorry you felt, there was no way for you to fix the harm you had done.

Now imagine how you would feel if that person whose life you destroyed forgave you unconditionally.

That is grace. You were given something you did not deserve.

Furthermore, imagine how you would respond if, by forgiving you, the injured party was harmed further harmed.

 

Divine Grace to Sinners We are alfsinners We cannot earn our way into heaven Unless God sent Jesus, we all go to hell Why would God send Jesus to die for us? The answer is God's grace (Eph. 2:8). God not only forgives our sin-debt. He personally paid for it as well!

 

To clarify these preceding illustrations, let me explain how they apply to you. You may not realize that you are a sinner (Rom. 3:23). You have rebelled against a holy God and irreparably damaged that relationship (Rom. 3:10).

And regardless of what you think, you can never do enough good things to earn your way into heaven (Rom. 3:20)! In fact, due to our sinfulness, we deserve hell (Rom. 6:23)!

In this case, there is an unbridgeable chasm between God and us caused by our sin. And there is nothing we can do about remedying our helpless situation (1 Tim. 1:9-10)!

Consequently, unless God took the initiative, we would be quarantined from God eternally.

But why should God care about us? And above all, why would he be willing to send his son to die a horrible death on the cross for us (2 Cor. 8:9)?

The only answer is God’s grace (Eph. 2:8). God not only forgives your debt, he paid it as well!

 

Divine Grace God's plan of salvation started with Jesus' birth & ended at the cross Virgin birth shows the extent of God's love for us God graciously sent Jesus "to save his people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21). It was God's choice to rescue us from our sins when we have nothing to offer him in return We do not deserve God's love and personal sacrifice for us

 

God’s plan of salvation is an act of divine grace and love. His plan started with the incarnation and ended when Jesus died on the cross. Jesus became sin in our place so that we might have new life in him. (2 Cor. 5:21).

The virgin birth shows the extent of God’s love for us because:

  • Despite our sinfulness (Rom. 6:23)), he graciously sent Jesus “to save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21)
  • We do not deserve God’s love and personal sacrifice for us
  • But it was God’s choice to rescue us from our sins when we have nothing to offer him in return

 

5.   Reason 5: The Eagerness of Mary and Joseph to Obey God

 

Eagerness of Mary & Joseph to Obey God Mary humbly obeyed the Lord: "I am the Lord's servant.... May it be to me as you have said" (Luke 1:38) Joseph obeyed after an angel appeared to him in a dream

 

The birth narratives portray Mary humbly obeying the Lord. She immediately submitted to God’s will. She responded, “I am the Lord’s servant.… May it be to me as you have said” (Luke 1:38).

On the other hand, when Joseph heard about Mary’s pregnancy, he knew he was not the father. He intended to divorce her quietly (Matt. 1:19). However, an angel appeared to him in a dream and explained God’s plan. He subsequently obeyed God’s will despite the future shame and reproach (Matt. 1:19–25).

 

6.   Reason 6: Reliable Historical Narrative of the Virgin Birth?

 

Virgin Birth Narratives are True Matthew & Luke tell different but compatible accounts Narratives carefully documented events without embellishment Mary & Jesus' brothers would have preserved the narrative Early church fathers were convinced of the truthfulness of the virgin birth

 

 

Christmas is a big deal because the virgin birth narratives are genuine and authentic!

How do we know the Christmas narrative is true? In the first place, start by considering the following evidence:

  • Firstly, the birth narratives in Matthew and Luke tell different but compatible accounts. Both knew Jesus’ virgin birth was an established fact
  • Secondly, if the stories were fictitious, Matthew and Luke would exaggerate the miracles. But instead, they show considerable restraint
  • Thirdly, Matthew and Luke’s accounts carefully document what happened at Jesus’ birth. Significantly there is no embellishment
  • Fourthly, Mary and Jesus’ brothers would preserve Jesus’ birth story from any distortion
  • Fifthly, Jesus’ brother, James, believed he was God and died a martyr for that belief (James 2:1)
  • Finally, the early church fathers believed in the virgin birth. Their support endorses it as a well-accepted first-century Christian tradition

 

Another key point is the historical reliability of the New Testament. Two criteria establish the reliability of the New Testament. And these are the reliability of the (1) documents and (2) witnesses.

Firstly, the New Testament’s reliability exceeds any book from the ancient world.

  • Many New Testament manuscript copies are dated nearer to the originals than any ancient text
  • The manuscript copies were copied 99.5 percent accurately
  • The information in the New Testament has been corroborated by external evidence

 

Secondly, the New Testament authors were either disciples or superintended by disciples. The disciples were men of outstanding moral character. And all except John willingly died for what they believed (the resurrection).

a.   Why isn’t Jesus’ birth narrative in Mark and John or other New Testament books?

The virgin birth was likely common knowledge to early Christians. And this explains why Mark and John treat it as an established fact.

The Apostle Paul indirectly assumes the miraculous virgin conception. He compares the first human, Adam, with the second Adam, Jesus.

  • Adam was created with a perfect human nature, but he chose to rebel
  • Jesus was the perfect God-man with a perfect human nature, but he did not sin (1 Cor. 15:20–22, 45–49; Rom. 5:14–19)

  

b.   The virgin birth cannot be a myth!

 

 

Virgin Birth Cannot Be a Myth! NT documents are historically accuate No virgin birth myths in other religions Jews never expected a virgin birth for their Messiah Legend takes 60 yrs & isolation, but neither applies to the virgin birth story

 

Claiming the virgin conception is a myth or legend is impossible!

  • Firstly, the narratives are found in two historically reliable New Testament books. Further, the disciples had access to Jesus, Mary, and Jesus’ brothers
  • Secondly, up until that time, the virgin birth narrative was unique. No legends were paralleling a virgin birth in any other religion
  • Thirdly, pre-Christian Jewish tradition never anticipated a virgin birth of the Messiah
  • Finally, myth and legend require at least 60 to 80 years and isolation to evolve. Neither was present here

 

III.   Putting It All Together

Christmas is a big deal because it is an opportunity to worship God because of Jesus’ birth.

Our supernatural God invaded our natural world as a human. If God hadn’t conceived Jesus in Mary, we’d have no one to save us.

Undeniably, God keeps his promises. The virgin birth fulfills prophecy. In brief, we can trust that God will keep every promise he has made.

The virgin birth introduced the perfect and final expression of God’s saving love, Jesus. For this reason, if you place your faith in the Lord, you will spend eternity with him.

Since the New Testament is reliable, the Christmas story of the virgin birth is trustworthy. These virgin birth cannot be wished away by critics because they don’t want to believe in miracles.

 

IV.   What are Your Next Steps?

All things considered, without the virgin birth, there would be no Jesus. Moreover, without Jesus, there would be no salvation. And most importantly, without salvation, we’d be stuck in our sins forever. That is why Christmas is a big deal!

And God chose to sacrifice Jesus to provide us with salvation. Jesus is the only mediator between sinful humans and a perfect, holy God.

  • God sent Jesus to live a sinless life and die in our place as the perfect sacrificial lamb
  • And if we place our faith in Jesus, we can have our sins forgiven and spend eternity with God
  • Jesus’ death delivered us from our sin
  • In other words, the virgin birth is the start of the gospel!

 

This Christmas season is the perfect time for learning how to talk to others about the Good News or Gospel.

 

Conversely, I have suggestions if you do not have a personal relationship with Jesus.

  • Firstly, read or listen to the birth narratives in chapter one of Matthew and Luke
  • Then read or listen to the Gospel of John
  • Also, attend a Christmas service allowing yourself to be vulnerable during worship
  • And despite your doubts, you may find yourself inexorably drawn to Jesus. The Savior who loves you an infinite amount

 

I pray that you can celebrate Christmas this year with the real meaning of Christmas in mind!

Binmin Resources

Podcast Ep. 15: Virgin Birth |Putting the Fun…

Podcast Ep. 14: Jesus Two Natures |Putting the Fun…

Podcast Ep. 13: Trinity |Putting the Fun…

Podcast Ep. 16: Substitutionary Atonement |Putting the Fun…

Podcast Ep. 24: Depression | When Life is Tough

Podcast Ep. 25 Suffering | When Life is Tough

Podcast Ep. 27: Loneliness | When Life is Tough

Podcast Ep. 48: Why is Christmas Such a Big Deal?

Resources

  1. Kendall, R. T. Understanding Theology, Volume Two. Christian Focus, 2000.
  2. Elwell, Walter A. & Barry J. Beitzel. “Virgin Birth of Jesus.” In Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible. Volume 2. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1988.
  3. Geisler, Norman L. “Virgin Birth of Christ.” In Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1999.
  4. Geisler, Norman L. & Ralph E. MacKenzie, R. E. Roman Catholics, and Evangelicals: Agreements and Differences. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1995
  5. Machen, J. Gresham. The Virgin Birth of Christ. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1930.
  6. Corduan, Winfried. No Doubt About It: The Case for Christianity. Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1997.
  7. Buckwalter, H. Douglas. “Virgin Birth.” In Evangelical dictionary of biblical theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1996.
  8. Got Questions Ministries. Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Logos Bible Software, 2002–2013.

Table of Contents

Related Blog Posts

Bible verses for anxiety and fear can be found within the writings of the Old Testament prophets. Most Christians consider…

It is cold tonight, cloudless with stars so bright I can easily see the flock bedded down in the pen…

  “For this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I myself will search for my sheep and look after them….

Using Scriptures for emotional healing is an essential topic for Christians. Why? In the first place, Christians often counsel others….

Do you know there are claims about an association between Christmas and paganism? In other words, some people want you…

  I.   What We Celebrate at Christmas Christmas is a big deal for millions. The reasons vary. It may be:…

Or Try One of these Popular Topics

Want to be the first to get exclusive videos and content for your spiritual life?

Yes please! Join our email newsletter to stay in the know.