(A memory from a few years back. Viewing the Rankin/Bass Christmas special “Santa Claus is coming to town” would be helpful.)
On the way home I had two strong ideas that seemed linked.
The gospel according to Winter, Winter Warlock.
And these verses, especially the first 1/2 of verse 5.
“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.”
2 Peter 1:5-9
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith.
Now how do theses verses and Winter Warlock come together? What if I add some words from James?
“What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.”
Well here is how they connected in my brain.
Peter tells us to add to our faith. When we believe in Jesus’ death and resurrection and that his gift of love for us pays for our sin, we are saved, it is a done deal. Like when in “Santa Claus is coming to town” animated feature Winter Warlocks frozen heart is melted by Santa’s gift. But Peter said to add to our faith. If our salvation is secure in Jesus what is there to add?
When a baby is born it is a complete baby. But is that baby a finished product? No, it must be fed and nurtured and cleaned and guided and protected. The baby is added to, even though it is a complete human at birth. So it is with us we are born anew or born again. We need to add to our faith, grow our faith, nurture the new life that Jesus has birthed in us.
The verse in James says that we show that our new birth has made us new by our change of heart which is shown in our change in behavior. Winters heart was changed which changed the way he acted, and what he was able to do. He couldn’t curse, he could only bless.
Winter Warlock doesn’t mention Jesus, but he is changed by love. It isn’t a perfect fit but I hope it brings a new dimension to our Christmas season viewing.
Merry Christmas. Thank you Jesus for coming as a child, then finishing the grueling work of redeeming the world. Thank you to for continuing your work in me until I’m finished in your eyes.