Wednesday, December 21, 2011


I see Christians getting all uptight about using "X" in place of Christ during the Christmas season. I don't know how many times I've heard people getting all riled up about it.

It is true that the real meaning of the holiday has been getting lost in the commercialization these days. I actually saw Christmas decorations in the stores right next to Halloween stuff. It gets earlier every year - does anyone remember Thanksgiving? Oh yeah, that's the giant spending day when everyone is fighting over the hottest new items of the year. I don't even like the holiday season because of the crowded shopping, stress and craziness that it brings.

However, even though the true meaning seems to be getting pushed further and further away in all the frenzied shopping, the term Xmas is nothing to get all worked up about.

X is our equivalent to the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter in Christ, and has been a common abbreviation for Christ in Church history, possibly all the way back to the first century. There's not a lot of evidence for that far back, but it really came into common use in the fifteenth century, during the time that the Gutenberg press was invented, in order to save time and space in printing.

Now, I'm sure there are some agnostics who use the X thinking that they're removing Christ from the holiday. I find it quite humorous that they've failed miserably in their ignorance.

Some think that Happy Holidays is replacing Merry Christmas as well, but that doesn't really bother me a whole lot, either. The word "holiday" actually derives from "holy day," so the atheists who think they're by-passing religion by using this haven't escaped it yet.

So let's keep the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23) this holiday season, and not get angry when someone wishes you a happy holiday or writes Xmas on your Christmas card. It's all the same, and it's not really the words that are changing the season, but the attitude that we have.

Let's just be sure, as Christians, we are providing an example that glorifies God. And remember how blessed we are in having the freedom to share our faith and tell others the Good News of the Gospel, as we are commanded in the Great Commission (Matt 28:19-20, Mark 16:15, Acts 10:42). As we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, there is ample opportunity to bring up the Reason for the Season, and to explain why He came to earth to provide salvation (John 3:16-18, Rom 6:22-23, Acts 4:12, Acts 13:47, Jonah 2:9).
God bless, Happy Holy Day, and Merry Christmas!

Soli Deo Gloria