Luke 2:10-12 – And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”
This season is called the season of joy; from the Christmas carol ‘Joy to the World’ all the the way to the ‘HO, HO, HO’ of Santa Claus joy, is an internal part of our Christmas celebration. What is the underlying source of the joy of Christmas? Like everything else, we have to go back to the beginning to find out. “In the beginning God…”, that says it all. In the beginning there was only God. John says it like this, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”. Jesus has existed with the Father from eternity. These two are not emotionless spirits, floating in some primordial soup; far from it. They are the very definition of love and joy, totally complete and satisfied within themselves. And yes they are filled with unthinkable, unspeakable joy. Here is how John Piper explains it.
“The joy that Jesus came to bring is from outside this world. It is the very joy that Jesus himself has in God the Father—which he has had from all eternity and will have forever. There is no greater joy than the joy that God has in God, because God is the greatest object of joy, and God has the greatest powers to enjoy. Jesus said, “I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full”. His joy was the very joy of God. He promises to put that in us. That is what the Holy Spirit does. He pours out the love of God in our hearts, and with it the joy of God in God. “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy . . .”. This is “great joy.” And it cannot be taken away. It is indestructible.”
The joy that the angels announced was the very joy of heaven. This joy was wrapped in swaddling clothes and had come to overcome the depression that dominated mankind. As a result, joy is available to whosoever will. It is the very joy of heaven wrapped up in Christ. No wonder the world can’t say “Merry Christmas”.