Christmas is a Christian celebration. Many people, however, are not Christians. So, should everyone be expected to say, “Merry Christmas?” I, for one, am perfectly okay with people greeting me with “Happy Holidays.”
The word “Christmas” means “more of Christ.” Non-believers don’t even know Jesus personally, let alone want more of him, so why should they be expected to celebrate something that is not part of who they are? Christians must stand their ground against those who desire to celebrate the birth of the Savior, Jesus, because non-believers do not have the right to try to do away with freedom of religious expression. However, others who do not believe that way should be allowed to say “Happy Holidays” without objections from Christians. Rather than insisting that everyone should say “Merry Christmas” perhaps Christians should graciously point them to the Savior, that they, too, can truly sing from their heart, “O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.”
Let Christians celebrate Christ’s birth. Allow non-believers to celebrate it as a holiday of generous giving. There can be both. Giving is a common denominator: The giving of gifts, and the gift of the Christ Child. If some stores want to say “Merry Christmas” the non-believers don’t have to shop there. By the same token, if some businesses greet their customers with “Happy Holidays” the Christians can go elsewhere. Pretty simple!
While it is good that the true meaning of Christmas is sometimes proclaimed by the secular culture in advertisements and music, it is not good that the message of Christmas is often put on the same level as the commercialization of the season.
Some musicians who don’t identify themselves as being Christians sing carols that contain a lot of Christian theology as if they are just another song of the holiday, without making personal the true meaning of the lyrics.
Then there is the issue of Santa Claus. Non-believers focus on him. Christians focus on Jesus. Has Santa Claus become a replacement for the real person of the season? Do we want our children to believe in a fictitious figure or the real historical Jesus? Is it a contradiction for Santa Claus to say “Merry Christmas?”
While those who are not believers give gifts, Christians know the real Gift Giver who gave himself on the cross 2,OOO years ago that we might experience forgiveness and life everlasting. This Christmas, may more people come to know Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior so that they may want to “come and worship” him.
So, have a “HAPPY CHRISTMAS” and “MERRY HOLIDAY.” “HO, HO, HO.”