Skip to Navigation

2018 Nativity Greeting from His Grace Bishop ANTHONY

Download PDF

Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
December 25, 2018

Christ is Born! Glorify Him!

المسيح يولد! تمجده!

Christmas is many things, which includes a story of two kings. One is from the world and the other King comes from heaven.

The first king, Herod, was not confident. He thought his power had to be protected. Although he was wealthy, sat on a throne, and looked down on others, he was afraid of everyone. Instead of bringing smiles to people's faces, he brought tears to their eyes. When he heard from the wise men that a baby Boy was born of a Holy Woman in the countryside, a Savior who would serve and save the people, Herod's fear got the best of him and he was in a "furious rage." He looked everywhere to find this newborn King.

Therefore, God hid the baby King, who was from heaven, and His very own Son, in a cave in the country, under the stars, in the Holy arms of his Mother, while the animals, shepherds, and angels kept watch over Him. Unlike Herod, this baby Jesus would grow up to be the Perfect King. “He increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” (Luke 2:52) People loved Him. They were not afraid of Him. Little children would run up to Him. People were drawn to Him like metal to a magnet. And though crowds were always with Him, He made time with each person that needed Him. Everyone, well almost everyone, loved him.

The worldly king sold his kingdom for his pleasure at a party. The heavenly King, Jesus Christ, bought a Kingdom to give to His Father as a present. His purpose was His pleasure.

Herod loved making speeches. He gave speeches from his throne to force people to do his will. The fearful king wanted frightened subjects. He put on golden robes because he thought he was a god. But just as his proud heart swelled to the cheers of the crowd, he died then and there (Acts 21).

Jesus never spoke like that. He never sat on a throne; he was nailed to the Cross. And from the Cross, He never spoke more powerfully than when He didn’t speak at all. And when this King died, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords gave life to everyone. (Revelation 19:16 and 1 Timothy 6:15)

It does not matter what conditions we are given in life, whether we live in a palace and sit on a throne, or are born in a cave and lay in a manger, it is our love for God that makes us great, like Jesus Christ, the heavenly King.

May He who was born in a cave and lay in a manger for our salvation bless you always.

Bishop of Toledo
Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America