20th December 2015

Santa Clause is Coming to Town 

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no-one can boast.”
Ephesians 2:8-9 (NIV UK)

One of my favourite 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

Wait a second—“He’s keeping a list?” I don’t like the sound of this Santa very much. And unfortunately, a lot of people confuse the way he’s portrayed in the song with the character of God. They see God as a type of eternal goalkeeper who’s got a list of all the bad stuff you’ve ever done and is holding a grudge against you. But we know that’s just not true.

God is nothing like Santa Claus! In fact, He’s the exact opposite. He loved us so much that he sent his only begotten son to bring us back into communion with him. And it was by our Lord’s perfect relationship with the Father and Spirit, as well as his perfect relationship with all of humanity that satisfied the requirements of God on our behalf. And that life of perfect relationship is exactly what he offers each of us, every day. See how Paul puts it in Romans: “All are justified freely by his grace through redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:24).

That gift of free grace and mercy through Christ sounds so much better than living under the constant fear and anxiety of legalism. So the next time you hear Gene Autry singing about Santa making his list and checking it twice, remember that, thankfully, we know a God who cares less about lists than about having a full and right relationship with us through his son, Jesus Christ.

Holy Father, we human being seem to mess up everything! We confuse you with Santa Claus, a myth of our own devising. We complicate the simple magnificent message of your sending us your son. Help us to separate fact from fiction and to look only to you and your true reality. In Jesus’ name we pray.

Study by Joseph Tkach


joeandtammyAbout the Author:
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA. You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland.  For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email:  admin@daybyday.org.uk