Dear Tabernacle Family,
Thanks so much for joining us for Christmas Worship! How wonderful it is to share our love for God through the beautiful gift of worship! There are many customs and traditions which are associated with the Christmas holiday. The trees with ornaments, tinsel and lights. The family get-together, complete with turkey and feasting. The carols, parties and festivities. And of course, the giving and receiving of gifts. When we seek the origin as to why we give gifts at Christmas, our search takes us back to the manger in Bethlehem where Jesus Christ, the greatest gift, was initially presented to the world.
We might want to say that the Wise Men started it all when they presented him gifts (See Matthew 2:1-12), but in truth, gift-giving really began with God Himself. Isaiah 9:6 declares, “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given!” From our earthly perspective: “a Child is born;” but from God’s heavenly perspective, “a Son has been given!” Jesus himself declares in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
God is the consummate giver! He gave His love to the world in the person of His Son. He gave the Shepherds an angelic birth announcement heralding the glory of the hour. He gave the Wise Men a star that brought them to the Christ Child. And in response to these gifts of God’s grace, Mary gave her submission to the will of God. Joseph offered his reputation and his faith. The Shepherds gave their worship and their testimony. The Wise Men presented their gifts of honor and praise, and we present our hearts to God in surrender and adoration as we declare with the Apostle Paul, “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15)
On behalf of Bishop Robert, along with each of the pastors and staff of The Tab, we pray you will experience a most blessed and Merry Christmas and that your heart will be continually filled with the wonderful gifts of God’s love and grace.
With Christmas Joy,
Pastor Jim Ruddy