By Billy Graham
There are three symbols which mean Christmas — the real meaning of Christmas.
An illustration of a cradle
The first is a cradle. There, in Bethlehem, were cradled the hopes and dreams of a dying world. Those chubby little hands that clasped the straw in His manger crib were soon to open blind eyes, unstop deaf ears and still the troubled seas. That cooing voice was soon to teach men of the Way and to raise the dead. Those tiny feet were to take Him to the sick and needy and were to be pierced on Calvary’s cross.
That manger crib in remote Bethlehem became the link that bound a lost world to a loving God.
An illustration of a cross
The cross. There were both light and shadow on that first Christmas. There was joy with overtones of sadness, for Jesus was born to die.
Jesus, approaching the cross, said, To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world To Christians the joy of Christmas is not limited to His birth It was His death and resurrection that gave meaning to His birth.
It is in the cross that the world can find a solution to its pressing problems.
An illustration of a crown
The crown. Jesus was crowned with a crown of thorns and enthroned on a cruel cross, yet His assassins did something, perhaps unwittingly. They placed a superscription over His cross in Greek, Latin and Hebrew: “This is the King.”
Yes, Christ is King of kings and Lord of lords, and He is coming back someday. He will come not as a babe in Bethlehem’s manger. The next time He comes it will be in a blaze of glory and He will be crowned Lord of all.
Cradle—cross—crown. Let them speak to you. Let the power of Him who came to us at Christmas grip you, and He will surely change your life.