References to: Christmas

Oh Holy Night

Dr. Joseph Tkach

Oh Holy Night

Christ has set us free from sin.

(2.4 minutes)
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Biography:
Joseph Tkach

Joseph Tkach has been president of Grace Communion International since 1995. He holds a Doctor of Ministry degree from Azusa Pacific University. For more information about him, click here.

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On Christmas Eve 1906, a former Edison engineer named Reginald Fessenden broadcast the first music ever played on the radio. The song he chose was “Oh Holy Night.” He played the opening on his violin, and then sang the rest – though he later admitted his singing wasn’t very good.

But good or not, the words of the song rang true:

Truly He taught us to love one another;

His law is love and His gospel is peace.

Chains shall He break, for the slave is our brother;

And in His name all oppression shall cease.

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O Little Town of Bethlehem

Dr. Joseph Tkach

O Little Town of Bethlehem

God is with us and for us.

(2.7 minutes)
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Biography:
Joseph Tkach

Joseph Tkach has been president of Grace Communion International since 1995. He holds a Doctor of Ministry degree from Azusa Pacific University. For more information about him, click here.

Learn More:

Perhaps you know of someone who might like to watch this program. If so, go to the bottom of the page and click on "Email this page." Fill out the short form, and share the good news! There's also a way to share the page on Facebook, Twitter, and other websites.

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In 1865, a young American minister named Phillips Brooks was traveling in the Holy Land. On Christmas Eve, he arrived in Bethlehem. As the sun set and the stars came out, he passed through a field where, two thousand years earlier, angels alerted the local shepherds to the good news of Christ’s birth. Struck by these humble surroundings, Brooks wrote these lines:

We hear the Christmas angels,

The great glad tidings tell;

O come to us, abide with us,

Our Lord Immanuel.

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Santa Claus Is Coming to Town

Dr. Joseph Tkach

Santa Claus Is Coming to Town

The character of God is grace.

(2.4 minutes)
Program download options:
Biography:
Joseph Tkach

Joseph Tkach has been president of Grace Communion International since 1995. He holds a Doctor of Ministry degree from Azusa Pacific University. For more information about him, click here.

Learn More:

Perhaps you know of someone who might like to watch this program. If so, go to the bottom of the page and click on "Email this page." Fill out the short form, and share the good news! There's also a way to share the page on Facebook, Twitter, and other websites.

If you'd like to support this ministry, click here.

One of my favorite things about the Christmas season is the music. Whether it’s Bing Crosby, Alvin and the Chipmunks or the Choir at Kings College – holiday music holds a special place in my heart. And these days, it’s almost impossible to miss it on the radio. Let’s see what they’re playing now…

You better watch out, you better not cry,

You better not pout I’m telling you why,

Santa Claus is coming to town

He's making a list, checking it twice,

Gonna find out who's naughty and nice,

Santa Claus is coming to town.

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Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

In 1739, Charles Wesley wrote the lyrics to a song he called, “Hark How All the Welkin Ring Glory to the King of Kings.” A century later, Felix Mendelssohn wrote the second chorus of a cantata commemorating John Gutenberg’s invention of printing.

Wesley intended his lyrics for slow, solemn music. Mendelssohn intended his music for non-religious, secular use. But neither genius nor genre could prevent the work of these two richly talented men from coming together to herald the good news!

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The Meaning of Christmas (article)

In the Christmas season we celebrate the joy of Jesus’ birth. It is the story of the Son of God coming to be with us in the midst of our sin and sorrow, in order to bring us his salvation—the ultimate healing. As we thank God for sending his Son, born in a manger about 2,000 years ago, let us pray for those who are suffering and let us also pray for our Lord’s return in glory when all tears of sorrow will be wiped away and all this world’s wrongs will be made right.

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Merry Christmas

Sometimes it’s nice to state the obvious—that’s what most Christmas cards do. In celebrating Christmas, it’s not the date of Jesus’ birth that’s important, but the stunning fact of his incarnation. In his infinite creativity and freedom, God reached down to us by becoming one of us. In doing so, he delivered the joyous good news of who he is for us and who he has made us to be in him.

Irenaeus, a second-century Christian teacher, put it this way:

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Once Pagan, Always Pagan?

Does Deuteronomy 12:30-31 mean that it is sinful to have Christian celebrations on days that used to be celebrated in honor of false gods? Through Moses, God says:

Be careful not to be ensnared by inquiring about their gods, saying, “How do these nations serve their gods? We will do the same.” You must not worship the Lord your God in their way, because in worshiping their gods, they do all kinds of detestable things the Lord hates. They even burn their sons and daughters in the fire as sacrifices to their gods.

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Does It Matter When Jesus Was Born?

During the season of Advent, most Christian churches are in a “countdown” to the celebration of Jesus’ birth at Christmas. During this time of year we sometimes hear discussions concerning whether December 25 is the right day to celebrate Jesus’ birth, or even if it is appropriate to do so at all.

Trying to figure out the exact year, month and day of Jesus’ birth is not new. Theologians have been at it for almost 2,000 years. Here are brief samplings of some of their ideas:

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When Was Jesus Born?

The Gospel of Matthew indicates that Jesus was born before the death of Herod the Great (Matthew 2:1, 15, 19). New Testament scholar Donald A. Hagner, in Matthew 1-13 of the Word Biblical Commentary, notes: “Herod, whose long reign began in 37 B.C., died in 4 B.C.” Most modern scholars agree.

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