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Saturday, December 25, 2010

12/26/10- White Christmas?

10 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:10,11)

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Thoughts:  Do snow and Christmas really go together?  For several years there was a theological trend to say that Christmas probably was in the spring not the winter.  The argument went something like- shepherds don't tend sheep outside in the winter.  But in sub-tropical climates they tend them all year long- and the Bedouins still do today in Israel.  Very early tradition had the Annunciation to Mary as March 25.  Hippolytus suggest in the mid 200s that we should celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December (9 months after 3/25).  This was 50 years before the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius declared 12/25 to be the day of the festival for Sol Invectus (Unconquerable Sun). 
    However, theologically snow and Christmas go together.  1) Snow is seen as a cleansing agent- "Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow."  Snow is the great equalizer- covering over everything- scarlet, purple, green, whatever all become white. Jesus covers over all our stained sins.  2) We become white like snow when we are forgiven (Ps. 51:7)- wash me and I will be whiter than snow.  Jesus came to forgive us.  3) Imagery of God's appearance uses snow- (Dan. 7:9; Mt 28:3; Rev. 1:14).  Christ is God become visible.  4) Snow is an image of the Word of God becoming incarnate (Isa. 55:10) Jesus is the Word become flesh (John 1:14).  So... I'm dreaming of a white Christmas!

Prayer: Lord, make my sins as white as snow.  Nourish me that I might bear fruit for you, Word Incarnate. (In the Bleak Midwinter)

P.S.- Our county just eliminated laws that kept people form working on Sunday (there was a hiatus til 1:30).  Tomorrow (12/26) is the first day for the elimination of these laws to take effect and there was a huge push to have everything open the day after Christmas.  But alas, the snow is supposed to stop when?  About 1:30 P.M. Sunday.

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