Yes, Virginia, there is a Jesus Christ. But about Santa Claus …

Every year, my local newspaper prints an old editorial entitled, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.” It was written in 1897 by an editorial writer for the New York Sun in response to a letter by an 8-year-old girl named Virginia. The little girl wondered if there really was a Santa Claus since some of her friends said he didn’t exist.

Poor little Virginia. She was asking the wrong question. Maybe her friends were pointing her to a more satisfying focus of her devotion and, rather than turning to find him, some ridiculous adult went on to ramble about how Santa will live a thousand years from now even though you couldn’t see him or prove he exists. Great. So, in the spirit of journalism, this is repeated yearly as if it somehow preserves some kind of childlike innocence.

Here’s something for all you Viriginias out there. Was there a Santa Claus? Mark Driscoll at The Resurgence looks at the man known as Saint Nicholas and the myths surrounding him. What you will find is that there is a lot of storytelling involved in the Santa story. But, on the other hand, you will find that what is known about Jesus Christ is not just hearsay but was written down by eyewitnesses and then handed down faithfully. It’s not another fairy tale, but real history. And that’s the best news. If you are going to look forward expectantly for someone this Christmas, look forward to Jesus.

The Jesus way is better than the Santa way

As every kid will tell you, Santa “knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you’re awake, he knows when you’ve been bad or good so be good for goodness sake.” Good for goodness sake? Really? So Santa is up there tallying up our good and bad deeds so we should keep track of the good ones and hope they outweigh the bad ones? There’s no gospel there.

What does Jesus say? He says:

“I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:15).
“Whoever comes to me I will never cast out” (John 6:37).

Jesus is the reason for the season because the truth is that none of us has been a good little boy or girl this year, and we need a savior not something in our stockings.

HT: Desiring God blog