And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron. But her child was snatched away and taken to God and to his throne. Revelation 12: 5 NRSV
We don't think of the Christmas story as being in the book of Revelation. However, Revelation is talking about Jesus here in chapter 12. In fact, we get his whole life in one sentence: he is born to rule but is taken to heaven.
Why is he taken to heaven?
To protect him from the dragon that is waiting to devour him. Because Revelation is really written in code, we must ask ourselves what the dragon is or represents. The dragon seems to be an earthly ruler - perhaps an emperor of the Roman Empire.
John seems to be saying that Jesus, God's ruler of the Kingdom of Heaven, was in danger of being swallowed up by the earthly powers and princes. The government was truly after him - and they did execute him - but he was raised from the dead and ascended into heaven.
And we thought saying "Happy Holidays!" was taking Christ out of Christmas!
God, we often say it but help us to mean it: let us keep Christ in Christmas. In His name we pray. Amen.
Copyright 2009 Amelia G. Sims