At Christmas it is a bit hard not to hear something about Jesus Christ. After all, only those ignorant of history think the meaning of Christmas is Santa Claus and not Jesus Christ. But why do Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ?

The birth of Jesus is significant because it is the fulfilment of a long expected hope. Immediately after our first parents Adam and Eve sinned in the garden of Eden, God promised that there would be a son of Eve that would reverse the problem of sin: ‘So the LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, “Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel”’ (Genesis 3:14-15). From that time on, God’s people were looking forward to this son of Eve that would crush the head of Satan and remove punishment for sin.

And just as presents that come after a period of intense waiting are more wonderful when they finally arrive, so it is with the arrival of Jesus as the Saviour of the world. Thousands of years passed with many promising young men being used greatly by God to hurt Satan, but they all had their flaws. Abraham lied about his wife. Moses disobeyed God and struck the rock. David committed adultery with Bathsheba. These men were very helpful to God’s people, but ultimately they couldn’t help others with the problem of sin because they had their own problem of sin. Then Jesus Christ was born. The sinless one, the speaker of God’s word, the performer of miracles. God himself! The wait was over, the remover of sin had come. This naturally is a special event worth remembering for years to come.

But did Jesus remove sin? Yes. At the cross Jesus didn’t die an ordinary death. He died as our substitute – he bore the wrath of God for your sin so that you wouldn’t have to be punished.

So how does this removal of sin become a reality for you? You simply ask Jesus to forgive you for your sin and believe that he has done so through his death. That’s it. If you truly do that, the Bible promises that you are saved. And if you do that this Christmas, I can guarantee that you will celebrate Christmas like you’ve never celebrated it before because now Christmas will mean the beginning of the end of your sin. And that’s something truly worth celebrating!

Joel Radford.