Je­sus can­not be split off from Christ­mas

Belfast Telegraph - - LETTERS -

“KEEP Santa and Je­sus sep­a­rate” is the ad­vice given by Colin Nevin (Write Back, Jan­uary 9).

Has Colin ever seen Je­sus in the lo­cal depart­ment stores, hand­ing out presents to chil­dren?

The white-bearded man in red garb who ap­pears briefly ev­ery win­ter bears no re­sem­blance to the “suf­fer­ing ser­vant” de­picted in the Old Tes­ta­ment.

Does Colin think that Belfast Tele­graph read­ers are so naive as to be fooled?

Mod­ern schol­ar­ship, in re­cent decades, has sought to re­claim “Je­sus the Jew”. Man­i­fes­ta­tions of the Mar­cionite heresy, try­ing to strip Chris­tian­ity from its Old Tes­ta­ment roots, will al­ways be a peril.

It is to be deeply re­gret­ted that many peo­ple to­day pay scant at­ten­tion to the Old Tes­ta­ment.

Armed with pas­sages such as Isa­iah 9:6 and Isa­iah 53:1-12, Chris­tians will con­tinue to cel­e­brate the mir­a­cles of the atone­ment and in­car­na­tion.

Both these mir­a­cles are cel­e­brated at each Christ­mas, Easter and Pen­te­cost by many mil­lions of Chris­tians. Our lo­cal Church of Ire­land saw large con­gre­ga­tions at the carol ser­vice and Christ­mas mid­night Holy Com­mu­nion.

If Colin has some is­sue of con­science around cel­e­brat­ing Christ­mas, that is fine. If he changes his mind, there are many Holy Com­mu­nion ser­vices at Christ­mas. In my ex­pe­ri­ence, al­most ev­ery Church of Ire­land parish keeps an open ta­ble for all who know and love the Lord Je­sus Christ.


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