LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Keep in mind the reason for the Christmas season

Merry Christmas! In today’s world, we often forget why Christmas matters. I hope even those who are not religious take a moment to reflect on the significance of the one we should be celebrating.

I believe that, by secular standards, He is one of the five most influential people to ever live (I would argue [that He is] the first, but I am not looking for an argument). His teaching completely revamped human culture. His movement has grown century after century. His devotees have had as great an impact for good in the history of the world as anyone ever born.

Consider the state of the world before Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth. The world was a very dark place where violence and the dark side of power were revered. The voices of people who advocated living by the better side of our nature never quite gained traction. After Him, there was a philosophical, societal framework for a Kingdom based upon love, mutual respect, and justice which could spread across cultures and unite people of all kinds of heritages. Before Jesus, there would be no investments for hospitals because the sick were seen as weak. Doctors were regarded a body plumbers and not highly regarded. His emphasis on healing changed that.

David Anderson

Women were often not regarded outside of their role in fertility and sexuality in the majority of cultures. Christian ethics regarded them equally. Everything, from the role of the Blessed Mother to the fact that Jesus himself first appeared after the Resurrection to the women and entrusted them to give his message to the Apostles until he came to Apostles personally, gave rise to the new respect that women had.

Women held office in the church as deaconesses, evangelists, teachers, and prophets. Widows were to be regarded, not killed to go with their husbands. The women’s suffrage movement came out of the Christian Church, along with the anti-slavery movement. Children were no longer property to be thrown away if imperfect. Abortion, infanticide, and child abandonment were forbidden. Jesus set the example personally by taking time to be with children during his services and defending them to the leadership.

The creation of charities was inspired by Matthew 25 and other teachings. The emphasis on universal education, the invention of the printing press, and the development of modern science came out of the Christian philosophy. So did universal human rights.

Man is created in the image of God and deserves respect solely on that basis. He and his followers rejected racism from the beginning. His teachings and actions were a radical departure from the norm, and 2,000 years later, we are still trying to attain that standard. The great news is that the world is forever better because of the evolution of our standards which He set in motion.

The fact is that celebrating the life and teachings of Christ is sensible from any objective perspective. In the west, we celebrate people’s lives by remembering their birth. We recount their contributions to human existence. The very existence of western culture is founded upon Christianity. Go celebrate the renewal of humanity: celebrate Christmas.

David L. Anderson
4th District City Councilman
Dover

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