Andy Tran

University Seventh-day
Adventist Church

The Missing Holiday


The Missing Holiday

Nov 27, 2016Thoughts

Over the past few years we have learned a couple of things about holidays:

  1. Holidays are based on something worthy of commemoration
  2. It is never too early to celebrate a holiday.

For the first part, we celebrate President’s Day (in America) to honor the presidents who have shaped the United States into the country it is today (for better or worse). We celebrate Independence Day marking the day the United States declared independence from Great Britain. We apply similar principles for Memorial Day, Mothers/Fathers Day, Christmas, etc.

In addition, we have reached new records of “how early can I start promoting a holiday” at least from the retail perspective. This year we observed Christmas decorations for sale before Halloween! “Black Friday” (retail holiday promoting many sales) has crept earlier to the point of swallowing Thanksgiving for some avid shoppers. We are just a blink away from seeing Easter Eggs and patriotic paraphernalia replace the countless wreaths and ornaments.

There are three holidays in the Bible worth commemorating, but only two that we actually celebrate.

Luke 2 tells the story of the humble, yet glorious birth of Jesus. Despite the rudimentary beginning, the angels of heaven immediately declared the good news to shepherds nearby. They declared that this event – signaling the arrival of the Savior, was an event worth celebrating! Never mind the fact that this birth did not receive the same kind of coverage akin to the births of Prince George and Princess Charlotte (the boy and girl born to the British royal family recently). It signaled something greater: inviting the entire universe to keep following the Great Controversy. Christians associate and celebrate this event with the Christmas holiday.

Matthew 28 tells the story of women who went to maintain Jesus’ tomb after His death a couple of days earlier. It was a dark weekend for Jesus-believers, who felt that all hope was lost with the death of their leader. As the women approached the tomb an angel invited them to see the place where Jesus once laid. Again, we see a messenger from Heaven commemorate yet another milestone in the life of Jesus – the resurrection. We see an angel declare good news of great joy, that Jesus had fulfilled His mission of saving humanity. He made a perfect life available to all who believe. Christians observe and mark this event through the Easter holiday.

There is yet another event outlined in the Bible worthy of celebration, but does not appear on your calendar. In Acts 1 Jesus is wrapping up His earthly ministry and about to depart. After some parting words, He rises up from among them until He is out of sight. While the disciples are gazing upwards, angels (noticing a pattern?) appear and inform them that Jesus is coming back the same way He left!!! 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 reveal more details about Jesus’ second coming. Jesus was born right on time, fulfilling the prophecy. Jesus died at the right time, fulfilling other prophecies. He is 2 for 2. What reason do we have to doubt that Jesus can go 3 for 3?

Some may declare that since Jesus has not come yet, we cannot really celebrate something from the future. But since when was it too early to celebrate an upcoming holiday? We start gearing up for the Christmas season before Thanksgiving week arrives. His coming is an event worth commemorating. It is going to happen. We could easily make the case to have another holiday that completes the Great Controversy and brings Jesus’ ministry full circle.

However, this would be hard to convince the country to get on board with a religious holiday many do not believe. So we propose a solution. As you look back on the birth of Jesus, take a little time to look forward to the second coming of Jesus. Every Sabbath you spend worshipping God, remember that He is coming back. As you open presents, remember the greatest gift of all did not abandon us to a life of misery on earth with eventual death. His birth, death, and resurrection point towards ultimate redemption culminating in the Second Coming. It is something worth celebrating, and frankly, not too early to start celebrating.

We are down for that holiday!



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