Monday, 25 December 2017

Seasons Greetings

A Very Happy Christmas to readers of my blog, your families and friends.

From the Bible –

Luke 1 v 26 – 33 - And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

Mum’s Christmas Poem 2017 –

Light in the Darkness

“Let there be light”: God spoke and light shone forth,
As at creation’s dawn He made the earth
And heavens by His power, all at their birth
Was good, until man’s fall.

Then darkness came, with sorrow, sin and shame,
With rise and fall of empires bringing pain,
While each life ended with the sad refrain:
This one who lived, has died.

All through this darkness, one sure promise stood:
That evil would be overcome with good.
A Saviour strong would shed His precious blood,
That dying souls might live.

And so a Babe in Bethlehem was born,
Th’ eternal Son of God in human form,
Man’s sin and death, by death to overcome,
To die His people’s death.

On Calvary’s cross salvation’s work was done:
His people’s sin was borne away by One
Who only could for man’s great sin atone,
Life giving by His death.

So on His glorious resurrection day
God’s Son for us has opened up the way
To life eternal. Thankful, now we say,
He who once died, now lives.

© JHS Dec 2017

The following is taken from a sermon preached by C H Spurgeon at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, London, on Christmas Eve 1854 –

"Now a happy Christmas to you all; and it will be a happy Christmas if you have God with you. I shall say nothing to day against festivities on this great birthday of Christ. We will to-morrow think of Christ's birthday; we shall be obliged to do it, I am sure, however sturdily we may hold to our rough Puritanism. And so, 'let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavend bread of sincerity and truth.' Do not feast as if you wished to keep the festival of Bacchus; do not live to-morrow as if you adored some heathen divinity. Feast, Christians, feast; you have a right to feast. Go to the house of feasting to-morrow, celebrate your Saviour's birth; do not be ashamed to be glad; you have a right to be happy. Solomon says, 'Go thy way, eat thy bread with joy, and drink thy wine with a merry heart; for God now accepteth thy works. Let thy garments be always white; and let thy head lack no ointment.'

"Religion never was designed to make your pleasures less."

Recollect that your Master ate butter and honey. Go your way, rejoice tomorrow, but in your feasting, think of the Man in Bethlehem; let him have a place in your hearts, give him the glory, think of the virgin who conceived him, but think most of all of the Man born, the Child given. I finish by again saying, ---


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