The Perfect Gift

Most people today, when they think about Christmas, think about gifts – buying gifts, giving gifts, receiving gifts, exchanging gifts, etc. Sometimes advertisers refer to their particular product as being “the perfect gift.” Is there really such a thing as a perfect gift? The answer is yes – and that gift is referred to in Romans 6:23 – “the gift of God is eternal life…”

I read something some years ago – I can’t recall where – that referred to salvation as being the perfect gift for the following reasons:

First of all, it’s the perfect gift because everyone needs it. “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life…” (Romans 6:23).

Secondly, it’s the perfect gift because it is a personal gift.  Jesus is the “made to order” perfect gift for every individual – whether male or female – young or old. He is not detached or impersonal but very much concerned with the details of every person’s life. He is the perfect gift!

Next – He is the perfect gift because He is a practical gift. A lot of gifts are not really useful. They might be decorative or attractive, but they serve little purpose. But Jesus is a practical gift.  Isaiah 9:6 says, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Christmas is for us. This Child was born “unto us.” This Son is given “unto us.” He is our Wonderful Counselor, our Mighty God, our Everlasting Father, our Prince of Peace. Jesus has solved more problems than any lawyer; He has salvaged more marriages than any counselor; He has brought more peace to this world than any general. He is a useful, practical gift who strengthens us to do the will of God in the midst of a perverse, troubled world.

And finally, Jesus is the perfect gift because He is a permanent gift – a lasting gift.  Many Christmas gifts, especially for children, are made of such flimsy materials that they don’t even last until New Years Day. Not so with Jesus! For He has promised, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” He is a permanent, lasting and very useful gift!

At this Christmas season, and indeed throughout the year, we must give our needy world the perfect gift – this personal, practical and permanent gift freely offered to them all by the Savior of the world. “Every good gift and perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights…” (James 1:17).

During the past many Christmas seasons there are a couple of phrases that have become quite prominent among American Christians.  While perhaps they have been much overused, they are still true. “Wise men still seek Him!”  “Jesus is the reason for the season!”  I’m glad for some people’s efforts to remind us of what Christmas is really all about…that being the Perfect Gift, Christ Jesus!

Sister Stroup and I wish you and yours a truly Christ-filled Christmas.  May this coming year be your best ever.  We love you!

Rev. Robert Stroup is the District Superintendent of the Indiana District, United Pentecostal Church International. He is Pastor of Pentecostals of South Lake in Merrillville, Indiana.
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