Christmas is celebrated all over the world on 25th December, whether they are Christians or not, people celebrate with friends and family and remember the good times. Christmas is also about giving and receiving presents from your near and dear ones.
Although it is widely celebrated, there are only a handful of people who know the story behind Christmas.Why Christmas is celebrated?
Christmas comes from the Mass of Christ (or Jesus). It is a mass service where Christians remember that Jesus died for them and then came back to life.
The mass conducted especially on 25th December is the only service allowed after sunset and before sunrise the next day hence it happens at midnight, so the name Christmas-Mass, shortened to Christmas. So why was Jesus celebrated?
You can read the entire story here down below
About 2000 years ago, in Judea (part of Israel now), King Herod ruled Nazareth where the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a young woman. The young woman was Mary and was engaged to marry Joseph.
The angel Gabriel delivered her message of God that “God has blessed you and is pleased with you”. Mary didn’t know what that meant but angle said “don’t be afraid, God has been very kind to you, you will become pregnant by the Holy Spirit and give birth to a baby boy and you will call him Jesus.
He goes on to say that he will be God’s own son and his kingdom will never end’. Mary was afraid and ecstatic at the same time but said: “let it happen as God chooses”.
Mary sister Elizabeth had the same message from the angel that she will have a baby boy whom God had chosen to prepare the way for Jesus. Mary said goodbye to her friends and family and went to visit her cousin Elizabeth and her husband Zechariah.
Elizabeth was pleased to see Mary as she already knew that Mary had been chosen by God to be the mother of his son. While Mary son was named as Jesus, simultaneously Elizabeth’s son was to be called John. Mary stayed with Elizabeth for 3 months and then she returned to her home in Nazareth.
Joseph who was engaged to Mary was worried when he found out that Mary was expecting a baby before their marriage but an angel appeared in his dream and told him not to worry and take Mary as his wife and the child who will be named Jesus which means savior because he would save people.
Mary and Joseph had to come down to joseph’s hometown as the Roman Emperor Augustus had ordered all the people to pay their due taxes. This is when Mary and Joseph traveled a long way from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Since Mary was about to give birth to the child they traveled very slowly.
Due to a lot of people traveling to Bethlehem, they had problems finding a place to stay for the night. The only place they could find was with animals were kept and that is when Mary gave birth to Jesus, the son of God.
Since Mary wasn’t prepared to give birth to the child, there were no swaddling clothes and Jesus’ bed was a haystack. As the new day began, an angel appeared before they and shepherds were scared, but the angel delivered the message that it is a good day and the baby born today is the Savior for everyone.
So when Jesus was born, a brand new bright star appeared in the sky. Some wise men in faraway countries saw the star and knew there has been a new king who has been born somewhere. The wise men followed the star and reached the country of Judea.
When Herod, the king of Judea heard about this, he asked wise men to inform about the newborn child who will be next king. Herod was camouflaging the situation because he was not at all happy as his place will be taken by the new king. He then had the plan to kill the newborn child who will be king.
The wise men did find where Jesus lived with Mary and Joseph and bowed down and worshipped him. They then spread gifts they had brought for Jesus such as gold, myrrh and, frankincense.
The wise men were warned in their dreams about not returning to Herod and they did warn Mary and Joseph. While Joseph got a warning himself not to return to their hometown and stay in Egypt until Herod dies.
When Herod learned about this that he has been tricked, he ordered to kill all the boys aged under two or younger so that new king is no more and he sustains his position as the King.
In the vengeance, King Herod killed many influential people and young boys as they shouldn’t take his position after he dies. But at last, Herod died and Joseph was asked to take Jesus and Mary to go back to Israel, for those who were trying to kill Jesus are no more.
But he learned that Herod’s son is alive and is far crueler than Herod was. So instead of going to Israel they left for Galilee and lived in the old town of Nazareth.
As Jesus grew up, he was wise and did religious teachings and did some unbelievable miracles from which many people were astonished while there were some who thought Jesus was the devil.
Jesus had many disciples among them were John and Peter, they were also called apostles. The priest of the Judea country had a keen eye on Jesus and found ways to get hold of Jesus so that people who are in awe of him will be controlled.
The high priest planted false lies against Jesus and took in remand. People were brought in say lies and Jesus was brutally hit. Jesus disciple Peter is also forced to say lies about him.
As the sun rises on Friday morning, Jesus is taken to the ruler of the district Judea Pontius Pilate by the priest. The enemies of the Jesus conspire together so that Jesus is punished and he was indeed crucified on a cross with his hands nailed to it.
Shortly before he dies, one of the criminals says to remember him when he gets into his kingdom and Jesus promises him he will be with him in Paradise. The story about Jesus being the promised King is indeed the King in Heaven and he was brought back to life.
Hence, Christmas is both celebrated for Jesus birth and resurrection.
His life story or crucifixion is all about Jesus atoning sacrifice to Gods for sin.