Good Reads 12.21.16 (the Christmas edition)

Here is a collection of good reads on Christmas. Enjoy!

Why are Jesus’s Genealogies in Matthew and Luke Different? by Mark Strauss

The Old Testament predicted that the Messiah would come from the line of David. Both Matthew and Luke provide genealogies of Jesus that confirm he was a descendant of David—therefore, a legitimate Messiah. He was a legitimate claimant to the throne of Israel.

But they differ in an important way: Matthew follows the line of David’s son Solomon, while Luke follows the line of Nathan, another Son of David. The end result is two distinct genealogies. How do we account for this? (click here to read more)

Are You Bored with Christ at Christmas? by Stephen Witmer

If this is true of any of us, it’s a sure sign we don’t really know him. At least we don’t know him nearly enough. Knowing Jesus is like knowing Mount Everest. For those who know it, Everest increasingly thrills, confounds, delights, eludes, and exhilarates. If people are bored of Everest, it’s because they’re learning facts about it in their living room, not climbing it.

Familiarity need not breed contempt. Instead, it can breed faith. (click here to read more)

Don’t Spiritualize Christmas by Jared C. Wilson

Don’t “spiritualize” Christmas. It isn’t a theory. It’s not a vague virtue or warm fuzzy. It smells like sawdust and straw and manure, and like myrrh and newborn baby skin. Christmas is a real thing that really happened. And it’s really good news. Take it personally. (click here to read more)

Waiting for More than Christmas by Betsy Childs Howard

Advent is about more than waiting for Christmas. The word means “coming.” During Advent, we not only remember that Jesus came to earth as a man; we also prepare our hearts for his second coming. When we sing, “O come, O come, Emmanuel,” we are not role-playing what the ancient Israelites must have prayed before the coming of the Messiah. No, we are praying that Emmanuel would return and make right all that is wrong with the world. When we sing, “Let every heart prepare him room,” we are not retroactively chastising the innkeepers of Bethlehem; we are preaching to all souls within earshot to be ready to meet their Judge and Maker unafraid. (click here to read more)

Christmas for the Weary by Trish Hedger

Christmas is for you, weary Christian. It’s for the parts of us that still feel the chill of the shadow of death.

May Christmas be our sacred reminder of God’s tender mercy that sent his Son from on high to give light to all who sit in darkness. Christ has come and his mercies rise with the sun each day to guide our blistered feet into the way of peace. (click here to read more)

 

 

 

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