God’s Merry Christmas Investment was a Gift
To wish someone a “Merry Christmas” should be the way we encourage them to remember an event that results in good cheer and joy. We should have uninhibited enjoyment of the Gift of God. Jesus said something amazing to his disciples before he died and paid for our sin. Once we accept this gift, we can know the truth of what Jesus said: “You have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.” John 16:22 (ESV)
Sometimes a joy in life is short-lived. It lasts a day, or perhaps a week or even a month. But then the joy fades. But the gift of Immanuel, God with us, is an exception to the temporary joy we often experience.
Jesus came over 2,000 years ago so that we could “be of good cheer.” The reason we can be of good cheer is founded upon an amazing gift. He was born, lived, died, and rose again with a purpose. His purpose was to offer everyone who believes in him a relationship with a holy God. This is astounding, because God cannot tolerate sin. For sinners, God is a consuming fire, hotter than the sun. In Christ, however, we are made holy, and God accepts us in Christ. That is the message of John 3:14-18. If we believe we are not condemned. If we don’t believe, God says we are justly condemned already.
Faith in God is the only thing pleases God. It brings him glory for our good. Hebrews tells us that without faith it is impossible to please God. With faith we not only please him, but we can then have lasting, unending joy.
Why We Can Have Lasting Joy
The answer is found in another thing Jesus said to his disciples. “I have overcome the world.” The world, as we currently know it, life is full of sickness, tragedy, poverty, starvation, wickedness, and ultimately death. But Jesus overcame all of it. He is the Great Physician, Deliverer, Bread of Life, the Way, the Truth & the Life, Everlasting Father, and the Resurrection and the Life. He has overcome everything that stands in the way of a life of joy. Therefore, you and I can be “of good cheer.” We can “take heart.” He has overcome the world.
John 16:33 (KJV) “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33 (ESV) “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”