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101206_Radio commentary_Battle of the Signs_#865

Wisconsin Family Connection
Week of December 6, 2010, – #865
Battle of the Signs

“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (NKJV) Ephesians 6:12 is a good truth to remember when we come up against sometimes vicious opposition to Christianity during the Christmas season.

Jesus Christ’s incarnation on Earth was arguably Satan’s greatest failure. He was unable to thwart God’s plan for the salvation and restoration of man, even when God Himself was in the realm of mortality and inhabited the form of humanity at its most vulnerable, the body of a newborn child. It should not surprise us, then, that Satan would vehemently oppose the genuine celebration of Christ’s birth.

I’m grateful that in this country we have a grand tradition of Christmas celebration, thanks to German immigrants and many others. And, thanks to the foresight of the Founding Fathers, we can publicly avow our belief in the birth of God’s Son by celebrating Christmas in the public square.

One of the reasons Christmas comes under attack is because it is an expression of religious faith in the incarnation of Jesus Christ—even though some might not recognize that. That’s also why the celebration of Christmas is constitutionally protected. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution explicitly guarantees government cannot prohibit the free exercise of religion.

There are some in Wisconsin who would disagree with the First Amendment while claiming to strictly adhere to it. Here’s a rather timely example.

It happens every year at our very own State Capitol. In the rotunda of the Capitol, surrounding the state’s forty-foot, decorated and politically-correct “Holiday Tree,” five displays stand sentinel for the month of December, as they have for a number of years now.  A giant lit Menorah, three signs celebrating Christmas and a gloomy brass display condemning religion and promoting the Winter Solstice engage in a silent, but epic, battle yet again.

A Jewish organization, two churches, Wisconsin Family Council (WFC) and the atheist Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) put up the signs every year.  The Christmas signs proclaim Christ’s birth and wish viewers a cherry Merry Christmas. Our sign quotes Luke 2:11 and says “May God, Creator of Heaven and Earth, continue to show us His mercy and grace as we celebrate the birth of His Son, Jesus Christ!”

The Hanukkah sign recounts the story of the rededication of the Temple in 189 B.C. and the FFRF sign, well, it’s like a tribute to Scrooge, or the Grinch.  “There are no gods, no devils…no heaven or hell…Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds…Keep State and Church Separate!”

While it may be true that there are many enslaving religions in the world, FFRF’s sign either willfully or ignorantly misses the point one-hundred percent.  Christmas isn’t about religion, as WFC’s sign points out so well. It’s about the birth of a Savior–God incarnate, Who came to set men free!

Not so, according to Annie Laurie Gaylor, FFRF co-president, who said in a press release last week that “FFRF’s sign is a reminder of the real reason for the season—The Winter Solstice.” Dan Barker, co-president of FFRF, said that “Christians ‘stole’ the trimmings of Christmas, and the son-god myths, from pagans…no month is free from pagan reverie.”

As you can no doubt discern, the FFRF co-president is not really all that concerned about freedom from religion, nor is she willing to admit that paganism is actually religious in nature—she’s more concerned about silencing Christianity in the public square.

It’s another reminder that, ultimately, this is not an earthly battle – it’s a spiritual one. The way to counter such antagonism to Christianity and the public celebration of Christ’s birth is to continue to proclaim the Truth, which is why, every year we put up our Christmas sign in the Capitol rotunda.

FFRF can celebrate the Winter Solstice all they want.  We’re celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ in our State Capitol this Christmas!  Let the advent begin.

This is Julaine Appling for Wisconsin Family Council reminding you the Prophet Hosea said, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”