Richard Craver

Thoughts, Musings And The Occasional Rant

The Giving Of Presents, and The Giving Of Gifts

Written By: richardwcraver - Dec• 24•12

From the outset I will say that much ink has been spilled over the centuries, and many kilobytes of text hammered out in recent decades about what I am prepared to write; but maybe, just maybe I can share this with you in just a little bit different manner.

Every year it seems that Christmas becomes more of a holiday than a holy day. I suppose one should not be surprised as the advertising companies have ever increasing media outlets at their disposal to peddle the offerings of their merchants. Not that long ago I recall having three television networks, a half dozen radio stations, two newspapers and junk mail for Christmas sales ads to reach our eyes and ears. Then there was the Sears and Roebuck Wishbook! Fast forward about four decades (Still not that long ago!) and I have  hundreds of potential television stations, dozens of local radio stations, and untold numbers of websites with banner ads trying to create in me a desire for what they have to sell.

But what woke me up at 4:30 this morning was the thought of Presents and Gifts. We use the terms interchangeably, but they are really quite different. I remember as a child looking at the Sears Wishbook, circling my wants and desires on dog-eared pages and hoping my parents or Santa would bring them to me. A few things I got, but more often than not my parents in their wisdom gave me something better, although it did not always seem as much at the time. The things I asked for and received were Presents, the things that my parents or others gave me were Gifts, the difference is in the expectation.

Two-thousand years ago the people of Israel were held in oppression by the Roman government, the prophets had foretold the coming of a king, called Messiah. The king they expected would be a conquering king, a great warrior that would lead them in battle to free them from the Romans. But God in His wisdom gave them something much better, He gave them a suffering, dying King. Do what? Yes,  He gave them a King that would pay the penalty of their sins and OFFER the gift of eternal life.

Yes, He OFFERRED the Gift of eternal life. As I said above, the difference in Presents and Gifts is in the expectation. Something you ask for is a Present, and it’s receipt is taken for granted. But a Gift is something that someone desires to give TO you, you must make the decision to ACCEPT it. So it is with God’s gift. He gave his Son, perfect and sinless to take our place, take our sin on himself and die to pay the penalty of our sin. My parents gave gifts that I didn’t know I wanted or even needed. God offered the gifts of forgiveness and eternal life that mankind didn’t even know they needed.

God has offered the gift, will you receive it?

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.