On this LIVE edition Tony Marino and Pastors +Brian Whiteside, +Michael Duncan, and +Jeff Klick discuss “Discipleship: The Assault on Christmas.” We team God’s Word with our latest book, “The Discipling Church.” Guest Panelists: +J.R. Miller (Dr. Joe Miller), +jason velotta, +Michelle Hollomon, and +Shawn Savage (Shawn & Caroline Savage).

Post-Show Notes

In addition to what we discussed on the show today, here are a few more thoughts from me.

  • There is no such thing as the “War on Christmas”… at least not my Christmas.  Yes, there is certainly a change in our culture that is pushing aside traditions.  The New Atheists are oversensitive and intolerant when it comes to respecting religious symbols. The desire to file a lawsuit because their feelings get hurt when they see a manger scene is a genuine New Atheist-pathology. BUT, all that said, it does not hurt my faith if people say “Happy Holiday” instead of Merry Christmas. Nor do I care if there is a Christmas tree in City Hall.  I am okay with people wanting to celebrate the holidays in different ways and I think that is the beauty of the United States.  The Culture does not have to reinforce or support my beliefs, but it should be tolerant of them and allow me to express them in public without shame or fear of attack from radicals. So while there is a war on certain Christmas traditions, that war does not limit my ability to celebrate Jesus… at least not yet.
  • I have raised all 3 of my sons to know from the start that Santa is a fictional character loosely based on an historic figure.  BUT, this does not mean I am a Christmas Scrooge. Being honest with my kids, does not mean they have to sacrifice imagination or beauty.  So my wife and I tell our boys that it is okay to pretend along with your friends who think Santa is real.  Don’t spoil Santa for them… someday they’ll find out on their own that their parents lied.  In the meantime, enjoy the lights, trees, and festivities of the holiday season… really… it’s okay!

Dr. J.R. Miller is a Professor of Applied Theology and Leadership & Dean of Online Learning at Southern California Seminary. Outside work, he is a church planter. Dr. Miller has a diverse educational background and authored multiple books on church history, biblical theology, and Leadership. Joe and his wife Suzanne enjoy the sun and surf with their 3 sons in San Diego, CA.

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