Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus

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God Bless Atheists This Christmas

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What Will You Celebrate This Christmas?

“But you, Bethlehem, Ephrathah, though you are small among the tribes of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from old, from ancient times.”  Micah 5:2

Even in the Old Testament we read signs of the coming of Christ. The Old Testament signs even today give us cause for Continue reading

Have A “Mary” Christmas

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O, Holy Night

And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree fromstar Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)

And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.  And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. From Luke 2 (KJV)

Emmanuel

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Define Christmas In One Word

If someone asked you to define Christmas in one word, what would you say? Continue reading

“Down With Christmas” Post Comments

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Down With Christmas!

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A Season For Sadness, Loneliness, Depression

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No Return Policy

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A Major Holiday Casualty

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Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

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From A Trough To The Cross

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He Missed The Light

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Is This What Christmas Has Become?

Yes, Virginia. There Is A Santa Claus

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Black Friday

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An Unexpected Blessing

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The Beautiful Death Of American Gospels

By Bryan Daniels
Blogger at Chiefoftheleast

I remember Juan.

He was a retired Puerto Rican doctor in his seventies who spent his retirement pouring out his life for the people in the slums of Caguas. His mission house fed the poor a warm Continue reading

Feds Unwittingly Hasten First Christmas . . .from the archives

Ronald Reagan once said, “Government doesn’t solve problems, it subsidizes them.”

The government of the Roman Empire in Jesus day was a mammoth enterprise. It took chariots full of denarii to maintain Continue reading

God Bless Atheists This Christmas . . .from the archives

A New Jersey billboard paid for by atheists depicted three wise men approaching Mary and Joseph and Baby Jesus in a manger. The billboard proclaimed, “You know it’s a myth! Celebrate reason.”  The atheist group reportedly paid $20 grand to display the message through the Christmas season.

A spokesman for the atheist group said the billboard was not to condemn Christians for celebrating Christmas; it was to encourage atheists to stop going through the motions of celebrating Christmas, God bless ’em.

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Our Christmas Scandal — Part II. . .from the archives

In Part I of Our Christmas Scandal we said, “When we think about Christmas we certainly don’t think about scandal. Christmas today is all about celebrations and bright lights and traffic jams and parties. But if we don’t admit and acknowledge the Christmas scandal, we will never fully understand what Christmas is truly all about.”

The true story of Christmas originated in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve sinned. Fast forward Continue reading

The Origin Of Christmas Bells . . .from the archives

One of the more pleasant sounds we enjoy at Christmas time is the tinkling of Christmas bells.  The  little metal music makers adorn Christmas trees, mantles, wreaths, Christmas cards and other Christmas decorations.

You can hear them peal from church steeples. For ambiance department stores and malls Continue reading

Our Christmas Scandal — Part I . . .from the archives

When you hear the word “scandal”, what comes to mind? Lots of folks may think of Bernie Madoff, or the current political scandal swarming around presidential candidate Herman Cain, or the sex scandal Continue reading

Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus

Editor’s Note: I republish this post every year at Christmas.

In 1897, Dr. Philip O’Hanlon, a coroner’s assistant on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, was asked by his then eight-year-old daughter, Virginia (1889–1971), whether Santa Claus really existed.

O’Hanlon suggested she write to The Sun, a prominent New York City newspaper at the time, assuring her that “If you see it in The Sun, it’s so.” He unwittingly gave one of the paper’s editors, Francis Pharcellus Church, an opportunity to rise above the simple question and address the philosophical issues behind it.

Church was a war correspondent during the American Civil War, a time that saw great suffering and a corresponding lack of hope and faith in much of society. Although the paper ran the editorial in the seventh place on the page, below even one on the newly invented “chainless bicycle”, its message was very moving to many people who read it. More than a century later it remains the most reprinted editorial ever to run in any newspaper in the English language.

Dear Editor – I am eight years old.  Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.  Papa says, “If you see it in the Sun it’s so.”  Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus? Virginia O’Hanlon, 115 West Ninety-=fifth St.

Virginia, your little friends are wrong.  They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age.  They do not believe except they see.  They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds.

All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s are little.  In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.  He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to our life its highest beauty and joy.  Alas!  How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus.  It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias.  There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance, to make tolerable this existence.  We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight.  The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus!  You might as well not believe in fairies!  You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove?  Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign there is no Santa Claus.

The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see.  Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn>  Of course n ot, but that’s not proof that they are not there.  Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart.  Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernatural glory and beauty beyond.  Is it all real?  Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus?  Thank God! He lives, and he lives forever.  A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay the times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

I Hate Holly

No plant on God’s green earth is more stubborn and troublesome than holly.

Yeah, Yeah, I know. It symbolizes Continue reading

Santa Claus And Satan

At Christmas we sing a song with our small children about Santa Claus coming down the chimney with presents on Christmas Eve. The song warns the  kids to watch out, don’t cry and don’t pout. Later in the song we tell these naive little peeps that Santa knows all about them, when they’re asleep, when they’re awake and when they’ve been good or bad.

When we grow up Satan tells us the same thing, doesn’t he?  Especially Continue reading

Thoughts On Turning 65

Today, December 23, I turn 65.

I’m officially a senior citizen.  I guess that means yesterday I was a junior citizen.

God has been faithful to me beyond my comprehension. At this time of year I ponder just how much God has loved me Continue reading

Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus

Eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York’s Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897.

The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history’s most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing Continue reading

Top 10 List — What Orphans Want For Christmas

Most kids today want more stuff for Christmas. Stuff like video games, Ipods, CD’s, designer clothes, sneakers, money, concert tickets, Wii’s, and new cell phones top many kids’ Christmas wish lists.

But if you ever visit an Eastern European or South American orphanage their wish lists would look vastly different.

Here is a list of the top 10 things orphans in these places would love to have for Christmas. They would say they want . . . Continue reading

Do You Know Who You Really Are?

Folks who feel the Christmas blues often turn their sorrows inward and question their self-worth and self-esteem. That inward spiral can often lead to real depression and a sense of worthlessness and lost hope.

Good news, everyone. You’re worth a lot more than you may think. In the notes in my Bible I found this chart that reveals EXACTLY what our identity is in Christ. Take courage, rekindle your hope. You are In Christ! We are . .  Continue reading

Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus

Eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York’s Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897.

The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history’s most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps.

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Ordinary Men With An Extraordinary Story

Ordinary men with an extraordinary story
“When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, ‘Let us go straight to Bethlehem then,and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us.’ ”  Luke 2:15
In Jesus’ day shepherds were not popular in most social circles.Their jobs were dirty, their only companions were often their sheep and a few fellow shepherds. They were nomadic and unschooled.  Folks considered them common and ordinary.
They were ordinary men with an extraordinary story.

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A Great Cure For The Christmas Blues

Some pastors will tell you they perform more crisis counseling during the Christmas season than at any other time of year.

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