In the days leading up to Christmas I will be posting a series on some of the good works and wonderful blessings to mankind that are a “side effect” of Jesus’ birth. (See the introductory post here.) This series is inspired by “What if Jesus Had Never Been Born” by the late Dr. D. James Kennedy.
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
–1 Corinthians 10:31
The vast influence of Christ’s birth extends beyond even those massive, philosophical, ultimate question issues to some really fun everyday things as well. Here are just a few…
- The graham cracker, enjoyed by toddlers everywhere (and not a few adults too) was invented by Reverend Sylvester Graham as a tool for alcoholics (it was supposed to reduce one’s cravings for liquor).
- The pretzel was invented in 610 AD by a Christian monk, shaped in a way to symbolize praying arms and given out to students who said their prayers well.
- Welch’s grape juice was invented as a non-alcoholic drink for Communion.
- The YMCA (Young Men’s ChristianAssociation) was started in 1891 by Dr. James Naismith as “an organized body of young men determined to win their follows to a saving faith in Christ.” (What if the Bible Had Never Been Written, D. James Kennedy. Thomas Nelson Publishers: Nashville, TN. p. 200) Not long thereafter, the game of basketball was invented by a YMCA member to help entertain inner-city kids.
- Crossing your fingers was originallya Catholic sign of the cross which later degenerated into a sign of hoping for good luck.
Here’s a good song that recently reminded me of this topic:
And there you have it! A few more reasons you should think of the birth of Christ as tidings of great comfort and joy!
Now I want to go eat a pretzel and listen to country songs. 🙂 This whole series is intensely encouraging. Remembering the good that has come from Christianity is a solid reminder that we are to be making more good rise out of the beauty planted within us.