Summary of The Purpose of Christmas by Rick Warren

The Purpose of Christmas by Rick Warren. Howard Books, 2008.

“Regardless of your background, religion, problems, or circumstances, Christmas really is the best news you could get. Beneath all the visible sights and sounds of Christmas are some simple yet profound truths that can transform your life for the better here on earth and for forever in eternity” (7).

“God’s Christmas gift to you has three qualities that make it unique. First, it is the most expensive gift you’ll ever receive. It’s priceless. Jesus paid for it with his life. Second, it’s the only gift you’ll ever receive that will last forever. Finally, it is an extremely practical gift – one you’ll use every day for the rest of your life. Interested?” (8)

1: Christmas is a time for celebration!

“I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people” (Luke 2:10)

“Christmas is a party. Specifically, it’s a birthday party – for Jesus – and birthdays are meant to be celebrated. It’s why we say “Merry Christmas!” Ironically, at most Christmas parties the person whose birthday we’re supposed to be celebrating is completely ignored” (13).

Christmas is a time to celebrate that God loves us… that’s why He became a man!

“God made you in order to love you… although there are accidental parents, there are no accidental babies!” (22).

“When the Romans nailed Jesus to a cross, they stretched his arms as wide as they could. With his arms wide open, Jesus was physically demonstrating, “I love you this much! I love you so much it hurts! I’d rather die than live without you!” The next time you see a picture or statue of Jesus with outstretched arms on the cross, remember, he is saying, “I love you this much!” (24).

2: Christmas is a time for salvation!

“Today… there has been born for you a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11)

Jesus saves you from sin and yourself.

“The middle letter of sin is I, and whenever I place myself at the centre of my life, I sin. It is any attitude or action that denies God his rightful place as first in my life” (46).

Jesus saves you for His purpose.

“Nothing compares to the thrill of being used by God for a great purpose. It is the deepest longing in your heart, and no other experience can take the place of it. It is why you were created” (63).

3: Christmas is a time for reconciliation!

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men of good will” (Luke 2:14)

Jesus came at Christmas to bring us reconciliation with his Father, fill our hearts with His peace, and turn us into peacemakers (living the Beatitudes).

Christmas is the perfect time to offer the gift of grace to others while celebrating the grace God has shown you (113-4).

Conclusion: Unwrapping your Christmas gift.

“If you sacrificed all you had to buy me a priceless and personalized Christmas gift and I never took the time to unwrap and open it, how would you feel? You’d be disappointed, hurt, and angry at my callous rejection of your generous love. And for me, the gift would be worthless if I left it wrapped and sitting in the corner. There would be zero benefit to me. It is astounding that so many people have celebrated Christmas every year of their lives without ever having opened their greatest and most expensive Christmas gift. Jesus Christ is God’s Christmas gift to you. Wrapped up in Jesus are all the benefits and blessings mentioned in this book – and so much more! In Jesus, your past is forgiven, you get a purpose for living, and you get a home in heaven. Why celebrate Christmas if you’re not going to open the best gift of all?” (115-6)


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