First, a whole bunch of Eerdmans authors talk about their favourite Christmas Carol, with me trying to sing one!
Second, here’s an old reflection from N.T. Wright on Christmas:
Christmas is not about the living God coming to tell us everything’s all right. John’s Gospel isn’t about Jesus speaking the truth and everyone saying “Of course! Why didn’t we realize it before?” It is about God shining his clear, bright torch into the darkness of our world, our lives, our hearts, our imaginations – and the darkness not comprehending it. It’s about God, God as a little child, speaking words of truth, and nobody knowing what he’s talking about.
Third, Chad Bird (no relation) has an out of the ordinary advent reflection on When a Dragon Tried to Eat Jesus, he writes:
I’m still searching for a Christmas card with a red dragon in the nativity, lurking amidst the cows and lambs, waiting to devour the baby in the manger. None of the Gospels mention this unwelcome visitor to Bethlehem, but the Apocalypse does. John paints a seven-headed, ten-horned red dragon onto the peaceful Christmas canvas. You can read all about it in Revelation 12. It’s the nativity story we don’t talk about. A dragon trying to eat our Lord. The red dragon was standing “before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron.” Clearly, more was going on at Christmas than drinking eggnog and kissing under the mistletoe. Or even peace on earth. Hark the herald angels sing, a dragon waits to eat our king.
Fourth, since I’ve been writing some lectures on the history of heresy, and reading Rowan William’s excellent book on Arius, I cannot resist posting this old meme: