The left says, “Social justice, Jesus on our side!!” The right says “Personal morality, Jesus on our side!” But they’re both wrong, because Jesus has his own politics called the Kingdom of God outlined in the Sermon on the Mount!!
We never dreamed that Jesus was that serious about things. But things are beginning to change, and we are beginning to recover the gospel of King Jesus.
“Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king [or Herod the Christ], behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews [shorthand for king of the Jews is Christ]? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ [King of the Jews] was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet: “‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.'”” Matthew 2:1-6 ESV.
So we have this man, Herod Agrippa. He was the Roman client-king over Judea. He became king in 37 B.C., at 37 years of age. He was made king by the Roman Senate because the Romans were wanting to take control of Jerusalem but the Jewish Hasmonean rulers were resisting, and so Herod Agrippa, of an Idumean father and Jewish mother, led Roman troops in conquering the Jewish Hasmonean rulers of Jerusalem. In appreciation of his deeds in service to the empire, the Roman Senate voted to make Herod Agrippa the King of the Jews. He’d gone to Rome to receive this honor, and they’d bestowed upon him this title King of the Jews. When he had received this title, Herod Agrippa and his good friend Mark Antony walked out of the Roman Senate, went about a block down the street, entered the temple of Jupiter, and offered a sacrifice to the Roman god Jupiter.
We are told that toward the end of his reign (he died in 4 B.C.) some astrologers from Iran known as Magi came to the royal court in search of one who had been born King of the Jews. They had read astrological signs in the stars that had told them that a great King of the Jews had been born, and they’d come to pay homage.
When King Herod hears this he is troubled, because this is his title, and he wants to pass it on to his sons, which he did. The various Herods, Archelaus, Antipas, all these Herods were still to come. So the king is troubled, because while Herod had been voted King of the Jews, but this one had been born King of the Jews. The prophecy was there would be one born King of the Jews.
“Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.”” Matthew 2:7-8 ESV. You know the story, the Magi go to Bethlehem, bring their gifts of gold frankincense, and myrrh, worshipped Him, then being warned by an angel they found another way home. But Herod sent out his death squads to kill all the baby boys under the age of two in Bethlehem.
And that was the only real War on Christmas. That was the war on Christmas, when Herod sent his death squads to Bethlehem to kill Jesus, and it failed. So we can relax about any so-called war on Christmas. Just relax and have some happy holidays. Christmas is a Holy-day that belongs to the church anyway. So why do we care if American corporations try to use it for corporate profit? We shouldn’t really care if they say Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Hanukkah, or “do you want that on your visa?” We shouldn’t care what they say. The only war on Christmas was when Herod tried to kill Jesus, and that failed, so we can just relax. We don’t have to worry about a war on Christmas.