The differences between Santa Claus and Jesus Christ are profound.
SantaNow that another Christmas is behind us, let’s take a brief look at how the anniversary of our Savior’s birth was celebrated across America. The Hallmark Christmas specials told stories of peoples’ lives being changed by the “spirit and magic of Christmas.” The sitcoms all incorporated a Christmas theme as December 25th drew near. Where I live, more and more houses and business put up Christmas lights in dazzling displays of multicolored lights, manger scenes, Santa and reindeer scenes, candy canes, and a host of eye-catching sparkles and glitter.

As I considered it all, what struck me was the sharp contrast between the warm fuzzy feeling most wereChristmas Tree celebrating and the Person true believers were celebrating. It caused me to think about the stark differences between the focal points of both “camps”—Santa and Jesus. Here are my Top Ten differences:

1.    Santa comes in a sleigh. Jesus came to be slain.
2.    Santa’s work is never done. Jesus says, “It is finished!”
3.    To thank Santa we give him cookies. To thank Jesus, we give him ourselves.
4.    Santa is honored on Christmas. Jesus is largely forgotten on Christmas.
5.    Santa’s helpers make the gifts. Jesus’ helper (the Holy Spirit) is the gift.
6.    Santa’s presents come down the chimney. Jesus’ presence comes through the Holy Spirit.
7.    Santa comes from and returns to the North Pole. Jesus came from and returned to heaven.
8.    Santa comes as a jolly old man. Jesus came as a man of sorrows.
9.    Santa says, “Be good for goodness sake.” Jesus says, “I’ve made you good for my sake.”
10.    Santa Claus gives you what you want if you’ve been good. Jesus gives you what you need when you realize that you’re bad.

This brief look at Christmas Past is meant to remind us that the celebrations we enjoy at Christmas camebridge to heaven at great cost to Jesus Christ. When God became “one of us,” He took the first step in displaying His matchless and unconquerable love for us—a love supremely demonstrated on the cross—a cross that opens the gate of heaven for those who put their faith and trust in the One who died and rose again for them. May we never forget the reason for the season.