We welcome you this morning to our presentation entitled ‘Celebrating Jesus’. It’s a bright Friday morning and many people are celebrating the birth of Christ. Although this day is not actually the birthday of Christ, our focus today is on revealing the mission of Christ as commanded by God for the salvation of mankind. Sit back and enjoy the show.”
So began the Bangalore ecclesia’s first ever Christmas preaching effort for those in Bangalore for whom Christmas is not a religious festival. And as there were more than a dozen visitors it seems that there are non-Christians who are open to learn something about Christ on this holiday. The audience rewarded the effort of the Bangalore young people (and extras) who had spent some very late nights rehearsing and putting the programme together.
The life of Jesus
The drama focused on the life of Jesus and his message of salvation through the story of Zacchaeus. The play started with Zacchaeus becoming a tax collector for the Romans. The scenes that followed picked up many of the comments and stories that referred to tax collectors in the gospels, weaving in John the Baptist, the birth of Jesus, the parable of the Pharisee and the publican, and finishing with Jesus calling Zacchaeus to come down from the tree.
The presentation also included some lovely hymns and songs sung enthusiastically by the cast and finished with the song ‘Knowing Jesus’. The joy and love that Jesus brings to those who know him shone in the faces of the young people as they sang.
The call of Jesus
The event was finished off with a five-minute talk by Brother Linus Daniel on the call of Jesus for all mankind to salvation, eternal life and the kingdom of God.
Although we know the pagan origins of Christmas, in a country where celebration of religious festivals is as much a statement of identity than of belief, 25 December presents an opportunity for us to preach and teach about our faith and love of Christ. This was a new idea for preaching in Bangalore and the response was positive and encouraging. Let us hope and pray that our God will bless those who heard the message and turn their hearts to him.