Recently I read the intriguing story of Telemachus. He was a Monk that lived in the late 300’s AD. He prayed, studied and served in a monastery until he felt called to go to the Pagan people of Rome with the message of Jesus Christ. Upon arriving in Rome he found himself surrounded by a vast amount of people living a lifestyle that was contrary to any Christian beliefs. On one occasion he followed the crowd into a huge stadium, which may have been the famous Coliseum of Rome. History tells us that this period of time in Roman history was just after they had defeated the Goths and were celebrating their victory.
Within the massive crowd of excited happy people, Telemachus quickly learned that along with the celebration there were battles with Gladiators fighting to the death. Upon watching what he seemed unbelievable, Telemachus is recorded to have jumped into the center of the arena in the midst of the fighting and dying. He shouted with all of his ability – “In the name of Jesus – Stop!” After repeating his plea several times and under the eyes of the Emperor Honorius, Telemachus met his death.
There was another man that lived years before Telemachus by the name of Isaiah. Isaiah shared and may have even shouted “Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.” (Isaiah 7:14)
Using the words of an old Monk – “For the love of Jesus – Stop!” May we Stop making Christmas so commercial. May we stop making Christmas so centered on each other – and “For the love of Jesus” may we make it about – Him – Immanuel.
The story of Telemachus continues for according to Theodoret the historian, the act of this martyr caused people to think and soon there were no longer any Gladiator fights to the death.
“For the love of Jesus – Stop” and think about the true meaning of Christmas.