The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own,[b] and his own people[c] did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1)

Seasons greetings!!

                                 I turned 30 on the 10th November, and out of the blue, my wife, Sarah phoned me one night and said she had booked for us to go to Rome on my birthday weekend (which was way better than my idea to go to the cinema and have pick ‘n’ mix!!)


Rome was amazing, there is history on every street you walk down, you turn a corner and you see monuments to the old Roman empire, ruins that are thousands of years old litter the streets all around.


Not only were the Romans brilliant in their industry, creativity, and architectural engineering, they were also brutal. They invented crucifixion, they heavily taxed conquered nations, and they made life miserable for many people. The Caesar’s who ruled the empire were elevated to the position of gods. “Caesar is Lord” or “Caesar is the son of god” were popular sayings in the Roman empire…


…And it is into this empire of violence, oppression and immorality that a baby was born. From the people of Israel, under Roman occupation, a light shone in the darkness.


At this point in history, into the leading world super power that had it all, fame, wealth, power, land, Caesar gods, Jesus was born as a helpless baby to a virgin called Mary, not in the Ceasar’s palace, but in poor conditions: and the world has never been the same since.


Long after the military might of the Roman empire has crumbled, the helpless baby is worshipped for the man he became. He revealed to the world what God is actually like, and that he was actually Immanuel, God with us. We now rehearse the line that “Jesus is Lord” and that “Jesus is the Son of God”, we take His values upon ourself as “Christians” to be peaceful, loving our enemies, carrying good news to the poor and down trodden, and that for those who call on His name, they are given the right to be called the children of God, and have their sins forgiven.


Jesus said: “I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it”. Those words probably seemed ridiculous to a lot of people when Jesus first said them, probably within the hearing of Roman soldiers. But His Kingdom and rule shall have no end…and so we worship Him this Christmas, by becoming more like Him in our everyday lives, in our thoughts, words and actions, looking for the resurrection and praying that His Kingdom will come on earth as in heaven.


May I encourage you, as I will do at Christmas, as you hang the lights up on the tree to remember that the true light has shone into the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it…and may the light of Jesus fill you, strengthen you and give you new courage as you take part in the new world God is making, where Jesus is Lord.


Merry Christmas