The Spirit of Christmas
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse; The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there…
BAH-HUMBUG!! HUMBUG, I SAY!
Okay, old man Scrooge just entered the building. Yes, the one and only Ebenezer Scrooge!
Scrooge is the main character in the book A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. It has been played out in many movies, theatrical plays and skits. My favorite version is the 1951 classic movie. A must see!
Ebenezer Scrooge was a miserable, lonely, self-centered man. In the book Dickens describes Scrooge as “tight fisted, squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint and solitary as an oyster!”
This was true until Scrooge was visited by three spirits, each at different times. The Spirit of Christmas Past, The Spirit of Christmas Present and The Spirit of Christmas Future. Each spirit revealed eye opening aspects of Ebenezer’s life and because of the spirits he changed for the better. Scrooge turned his life around!
Suddenly, he was sociable, humble, giving and loving. He finished his life on a high note.
Scrooge said, “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present and the Future!”
Do you believe in spirits? How about the Spirit of Christmas Past, Spirit of Christmas Present and Spirit of Christmas Future? Can spirits talk to you, can they guide you? And finally who is your spirit?
The bible names many spirits. Here are some.
- spirit of judgment, spirit of justice, spirit of perverse, spirit of deep sleep, spirit of humility, spirit of heaviness, spirit of truth, spirit of life, spirit of jealousy, spirit of gentleness, spirit of holiness, spirit of bondage, spirit of adoption
So, there are several types of spirits, some good and some bad. And according to 1 Corinthians 12:10 you can have the gift to discern the spirits. You can distinguish which spirit is good for you and which is not.
For all things good, God says it is the spirit who gives life and you should walk by the spirit, likewise the spirit helps you in your weakness.
Yes, spirits are very real!
Let’s look at the spirits who visited Scrooge and what these spirits means to you this Christmas season.
THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS PAST
The Bible contains many prophecies recorded by the prophets. The written prophesies were not in the prophets own humanistic words but instead was written in the words given by the Spirit. (2 Peter 1:19-21)
One such time was about 3,000 years ago. The Spirit of Christmas Past visited the great prophet Isaiah. Can you imagine getting a visit from the Spirit of Christmas Past? Well it happened and it happened to Isaiah.
As the Spirit spoke to Isaiah, he began writing it down. Isaiah wrote this:
“For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace… Out of the stump of David’s family will grow a shoot–yes, a new Branch bearing fruit from the old root. And the Spirit of the LORD will rest on him–the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. He will delight in obeying the LORD.” (Isaiah 9:6 : Isaiah 11:1-3)
Isaiah predicted the birth of Jesus approximately 800 years before it happened. The Spirit had visited him that day!
What if the Spirit hadn’t visited Isaiah and shared the good news? What if Jesus didn’t exist? What would your life be worth today? If our hope in Jesus was for this life only, then we would be as miserable, wrenching and confined as Ebenezer Scrooge. (1 Corinthians 15:19)
So, how do you know that Jesus really exist?… because He has given you His Spirit, The spirit of Christmas Past. (1 John 4:13)
I am so thankful He lives and he lives in our heart.
THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS PRESENT
The Spirit of Christmas Present visited Scrooge and during this visit Scrooge began to see how everyone around him lived their life. The people were celebrating Christmas! All of them were happy, thankful and sharing the Christmas joy. In contrast Scrooge began to realize how gloomy his life was. He did not care for others or himself. Needless to say this evaluation was eye opening.
So, today in the present, how are you living your life? What kind of person are you?
These can be difficult questions but as Scrooge found out these are necessary questions.
Don’t slip back into your old ways. In other words, don’t slip back into your past! The past of Ebenezer Scrooge was nothing but grief, hatred and strife. You do not have to live in the past.
You can live in the Spirit of Christmas Present. The birth of Jesus Christ, your Redeemer!
The present time is the day of salvation! (2 Corinthians 6:2)
THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS FUTURE
Scrooge had a chance to look into his days ahead when the Spirit of Christmas Future visited him. He didn’t like what he saw. He was older; he was lonelier and had nothing to look forward to. Scrooge witnessed his death. No one attended his funeral and his earthly possessions were stolen from his house. He lost everything! (Hebrews 9:27)
After seeing his future, Scrooge decided that he must change. And change he did! From that moment on Ebenezer Scrooge was a new man! Caring and giving.
Sadly all of us will die. It is part of God’s perfect plan. But it doesn’t have to be sad. You can change your future by changing your present. When you do that then your future will become beautifully bright.
The Spirit of Christmas Future visited the Prophet Isaiah and he recorded what the Spirit said.
It’s about your future.
“Look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth, and no one will even think about the old ones anymore. Be glad; rejoice forever in my creation!… And the sound of weeping and crying will be heard in it no more. No longer will babies die when only a few days old. No longer will adults die before they have lived a full life. No longer will people be considered old at one hundred!… I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!” !! (Isaiah 65:17-25)
Isn’t this wonderful news! Isn’t that a wonderful future!
Finally I would like to share one more Spirit with you. This is the Spirit of Alpha and Omega.
You may ask… who is this? This Spirit isn’t in the Charles Dickens’s classic story A Christmas Carol. You are right. It isn’t.
This is the part you should grasp the most. Grasp it tighter than Scrooge clenched his fist. Here is the good news!
“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” (Revelation 1:8)
Wow! The Lord God who is (The Spirit of Christmas Present) and who was (The Spirit of Christmas Past) and who is to come (The Spirit of Christmas Future)
Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom!
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the lord! … He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace!
And He is your Spirit of the past, present and future! – The Spirit of Alpha and Omega –
Let’s run our race with endurance… Focusing on Jesus, THE CHAMPION of our Faith Run.