Category Archives: Daily Dose of the Word

wHY DO CHRISTIANS CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS?

Everyone knows that Christmas time is a wonderful time of year. Sparkling trees, wonderful gifts, and delicious treats fill our homes as the world’s heart softens just a little. But if Christmas is all about Santa and presents… why do Christians celebrate Christmas? Because we are celebrating the Reason for the Season!

Yes, it was a merge of pagan and Christian tradition, but is more than that.

Christmas’ origins are a little foggy but the important part for us as Christians is that this is the time of year that we celebrate the birth of Christ. His actual birthday is most likely sometime in the Spring, but this is when we celebrate it.

His birth changed the future of the world!

With the birth of this one child, the entire world was saved. We were sinners, constantly sacrificing to God to try and atone for our sins. We were lost. But the birth of Christ was a defining moment. With him, and only him, all could be saved.

Does the Bible really say Jesus is the true Son of God?

Absolutely! Throughout the Old and New Testaments, the Bible directly referencing Jesus, the son of David, as the Son of God. The first chapter of Matthew actually traces Jesus’ genealogy from David all the way to his father, Joseph. This directly connects him to the prophecies in the Old Testament (2 Samuel 7:12-13)

“Absolutely! Throughout the Old and New testaments, the Bible directly referencing Jesus, the son of David, as the Son of God. The first chapter of Matthew actually traces Jesus’ genealogy from David all the way to his father, Joseph. This directly connects him to the prophecies in the Old Testament.”

2 Samuel 7:12-13

Just as the prophets of the Old Testament ( Here is a great resource about all the prophecies about Jesus in the Old Testament), the New Testament gives us direction and confirmation that Jesus was the true Son of God. The angel that came to Mary explained it to her:

“And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.”

Luke 1:35

How did Jesus save our souls?

The Bible clearly states why Jesus was born. He was to bring the Good News of our salvation and to make atonement for all of our sins. God gave his only Son so that whoever believed in him would have eternal life.

His death, his sacrifice, paid the price for ALL of our sins: past, future, and present. We could never do enough to clear the sin from our souls, but He did.

If he paid for our sins, does that mean I can sin without consequences?

That is definitely NOT what Jesus’ sacrifice was for. He intends for all of us to be saved, but the only way to salvation is through Him. (Ephesians: 2:8-9) Belief, love, and trust in Him is necessary to be saved. It doesn’t matter what you look like, what you do for a living, where you are from, or any such material concerns. He cares about the state of our hearts. That is why he poured his grace upon us and saved us from ourselves.

 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

Ephesians 2:8-9

What does any of this have to do with Christmas?

Despite the arguments about its origins, Christmas is when Christians chose to celebrate the birth of Christ. So does that mean we can’t enjoy Santa and presents? Of course not. That is also part of our culture of Christmas. But we must always keep the real reason for the season in our hearts!

Thank you so much for reading!

The CPP Ministry Team

Paul’s Joy in Prison

Paul is one of the greatest disciples of Christ that ever lived. Once he was saved, he traveled and learned in Christ’s presence. After Christ ascended, he dedicated every moment of the rest of his life to sharing the Good News. However, he spent the last years of his life in a miserable Roman prison. Even through this adversity, he found joy and wrote almost one half of the New Testament! We can learn to find joy in all circumstances by studying Paul’s words.

Paul had a difficult journey the last years of his life. He traveled from town to town, spreading the news of the Gospel. Not everyone was happy to see him. In his letter to the Corinthians, he explains that he “worked much harder… been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again” (2 Corinthians 11:23) After all of this, he finally made it to Rome, only to be thrown in prison! Yet he still spread the Gospel and found joy in these terrible circumstances. (2 Corinthians 12:10)

“…for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.”

2 Corinthians 12:10

He wrote Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon… ALL FROM PRISON. That is almost HALF the New Testament and he wrote it all during one of the most difficult times in his life!

He wrote 1 & 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 & 2 Thessalonians, AND 1&2 Timothy… ALL FROM PRISON. That is almost HALF the New Testament and he wrote it all during one of the most difficult times in his life!

In Paul’s letters of the Bible, he effused joy and contentment in his prison life. He was thankful and grateful for any and all assistance, but said not to despair, but to be joyful in the Lord. How did he do it?? And how can we learn to have the same joy in our lives?

Hope during Trials

Paul begins all of his letters in prayer. For example, he opens Philippians saying “In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now” (Philippians 1:4-5)Prayer is the key to keeping a relationship of communication with the Lord. Prayer not only for yourself, but for others that need His blessing as well. Prayer leads to being thankful and being thankful leads to joy.

He remembered his True Purpose

No matter what we may face, adversity, persecution, affliction, hardship, or disaster, the Lord has a plan for us. “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11) Even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time, God has a future for you. That future will always include a way to grow in faith and bring glory to Him. That is our true purpose on this Earth. “Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.” (Isaiah 43:7)

Paul never planned on going to prison, and yet he found a way to fulfill his purpose while there. He was chained to a different guard every day. Instead of being upset that he was chained to some random person, he saw it as an opportunity to pour out his best sermons with a captive audience! He writes of this opportunity in Philippians: “I want you to know, beloved, that was has happened to me has actually helped to spread the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to everyone else that my imprisonment is for Christ… having been made confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, dare to speak the word with greater boldness and without fear.” (Philippians 1: 12-14)

God is the true source of hope

Stark contrast between Paul’s terrible circumstances and his intense hope is very evident in the book of Philippians. The word “joy” appears 16 times in this short letter. He explains that “I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance” (Philippians 1:19)

How can he be so confident? The Bible tells us that no matter how scary our current situation, God’s will shall be done. You can face the worst and come out the best. Just like Paul, faith and trust in the Lord, and his plan, can get you through any circumstances. Paul wrote “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation.” (Philippians 4:12)

He remained humble

While he became the apostle of spiritual joy, Paul never took the credit. He never boasted. He didn’t even overcome through his own willpower. He attributed his spiritual contentment to its true source, Jesus Christ. He explains in Philippians 4:13 that it was the power of Christ that helped him overcome.

“I can do everything through Him who gives me strength”

Philippians 4:13

While it may be easier for us to rely on ourselves and take the credit for the blessings in our lives, God is the true reason for the good in our lives. Whether he gives you the dream to build your own company or sends a friend in a time of need, God will always be there to provide for you!

May the Lord continue to bless you and provide for your needs. May you come to rely on Him in faith and understanding,

CPP Ministry team

Why is it important to fellowship with other Christians?

We all know that the Christian faith puts a ton of emphasis on fellowship and attending church events. This seems like a great idea, but oftentimes we let our lives get in the way. So, why is Christian fellowship important?

It is more than just spending time with acquaintances that happen to share a similar set of beliefs. Fellowship is time in God’s family (see left).

Even the word for fellowship in the new testament, koinonia, means to be together for mutual benefit. This clearly states that it is beneficial for all parties. But how is it beneficial? The Bible clearly states that fellowship, spending time together as children of God, both encourages good works and is an expression of love for one another (Hebrews 10: 24-25) That sounds pretty beneficial to me!

“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”

Hebrews 10: 24-25

A third, most important reason, is that fellowship sets an example and has a massive impact on those looking in. Not that love for one another and good works are not important, but our primary directive is to spread the word of Christ so that none die without hearing the gospel (Mark 16:15). This can be accomplished when outsiders witness the love that is shared during our time together. (John 13:35)

“By this, all people will know tat you are my disciples, if you have love for one another”

John 13:35

And if you need yet another reason to fellowship, it is always an opportunity to pray with and for each other. For while solo prayer is powerful, prayer together is even more powerful. For the Word says, ” Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 18:19.

And these are just a few of the multitude of reasons why Christian fellowship is so important. Though many believers today do not recognize the importance of fellowship or local church involvement, Christian fellowship is essential to spiritual growth. Many aspects of our spiritual lives depend on being together with other believers to encourage, teach, serve, and share life together.

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