A Christian Reflection During the
Christmas and Chanuka Season
Ray Wilson

. Because I am a Christian,
Christmas has a very special place in my heart;
But what is it that sets this one specific holy day apart?
For one thing, it's a birthday celebration,
one that round the world brings joy and jubilation.
Yet, something odd: have you ever heard of such a party,
one that gets so many so excited
-- a birthday party to which so many come --
but the one it's for is almost never invited?
Gifts are given, so much for so many…
After all, it's a birthday; but for him are there any?

Mad shopping, colored lights,
and wishes of peace herald the season;
and parties, drinking, and celebration go far beyond reason.
Who is it that's caused all this delirium?
Yeshua Hamashia, son of Josef and Miriam.
The Romans called him Jesus;
Jesus, Yeshua, the meaning is one.
Brought fully into English,
Yeshua of the House of David would be Joe Davidson.

Yet, we know him as Jesus, Prince of Peace,
Light of the World, who we believe from death set us free.
We believe -- (or do we?) -- that he came for each of us…
for you, and you, and you, and you and me.
I believe that Yeshua came for me, and you, and you, and you.
Odd! What makes me a Christian is that I worship a Jew!
But, then again, it is not really odd,
for it is through the Jews that we know of God!

To believe in Jesus Christ and not in Holy Scripture
makes no sense whatsoever.
That same Scripture says clearly the Jews
are God's people, and he their God forever!
Through Jesus our Teacher, we take their God as our own.
To claim to love Christ and love God,
and not love his people, defies all logic known.

These thoughts first came to me in 1984,
a year when Christmas had a little something more...
Twenty-one centuries of Chanuka
and far fewer Christmases
met in a very special way.
That year, the eighth candle,
the last on the Menorah,
was lit on Christmas Day.
With lights and with gifts to each other,
Jews celebrate God's gift of freedom, you see.
It should all sound very familiar to any Christian
who has ever lit a candle -- or a Christmas tree.

We should know one another; there is so much to share.
We ought not to miss it, and won't, if we care.
As Christians, we'll recognize whose birthday it is,
and give him the gifts that are rightfully his --
ourselves, and our love to him and his own.
We'll invite Joe Davidson into our home
and hear his wish,
"Merry Christmas to all, and to all -- Shalom!"

©1984 by Ray Wilson. Permission granted to reprint text freely with attribution (by-line and this line).
Click here for printable (MS-Word) copy.