"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard, that went down to the skirts of his garments; as the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the Blessing, even life forevermore.” Psalm 133:1-3
If someone asked you to identify yourself, what would you say? --Would you start with your profession? --Your race? --Your sex? --Your sexual orientation? --Your nationality? --Your lineage? --Your religion? ...
As people, we subdivide ourselves into groups in order to belong. The only problem is, these subdivisions also prevent us from unifying with each other, and according to our Bible, unity is akin to anointing oil. In the movie, The Story of Jesus, archaeologists trace specific occurrences in the Bible through newly discovered landmarks. One of the things of interest, was their profile of Jesus and his uncanny ability to reach out to all kinds of people (Luke 9:11). Even more startling were those who the Sanhedrin considered “unclean” for interaction; beginning with those Jesus chose as His Disciples, and ending with those He chose to heal. (Matthew 9:9-13)
Jesus watched as the leaders within the Sanhedrin waded in corruption, basing their selections for leadership, blessings, and elevation on nepotism, nationalism, sexism, elitism, and of course, 'good ole gold.' It is interesting to note that all these things are still being used today. The only exception, is that today it is being done "in the name of Jesus." We have killed, maimed, mutilated, exiled, and destroyed many in the name of Jesus. And, as Christians, we have divided, sub-divided, sub-sub-divided, “spinned-off,” and “cult”-i-vated many aspects of ourselves based on a single attachment to a specific verse in the Bible.
Even the birth of Jesus is a problem. Yes, we know that Jesus was not born on December 25th. And yes, we know based on specific events in the Bible, that it had to be closer to the springtime; although, we do not know the actual date. For those of you who need to know more about this, you will have to do the research yourself. There is nothing better than discovering biblical truth on your own! It is so much more empowering for the mind, and tends to remain in your memory longer.
During the week of Christmas a few years ago, World News Tonight, a national news program in the U.S., selected Jesus as their Person-of-the-Week. They took the time to focus on the religious celebrations of Christmas in the United States and around the world.
The entire world has chosen to celebrate December 25th, as the day Jesus was born. This single day supersedes all others on the calendar whether you are a Christian or not. As Christians, instead of trying to differentiate ourselves from each other, wasting precious time, let us instead reach out to the multitudes as Jesus did more than 2000 years ago, focusing our strength on touching the lives of more people unlike ourselves. More importantly, let us focus our interaction on those who need to know God, His mercy, and His love, showing them the real meaning of being a Christian, and the true meaning behind the celebration of Christmas. L.
Study Reference: Psalm 133:1-3, Ephesians 4:3-18
From: "The Person of The Week." In The Master's Hands: 365 Daily Devotions For Everyday Living.
Copyright © 2014 by Lavona E. Campbell
photo: curezone/ blackkngold