This is a time that dredges up deep and dark feelings, and also a time of great joy.
Swedenborg, from ‘True Christian Religion’:
“At the time of the Lord’s first coming the hells had increased to such a height as to fill the whole world of spirits, which is intermediate between heaven and hell, and thus had not only thrown into disorder the heaven that is called the lowest, but also had attacked the middle heaven, which they infested in a thousand ways, and which would have gone to destruction if it had not been upheld by the Lord. Such an uprising of the hells is meant by the tower built in the land of Shinar, the head of which was to reach to heaven.
The hells had increased to such a height because at the time when the Lord came into the world the whole earth had completely alienated itself from God by idolatries and magic; and the church which had existed among the children of Israel and afterwards with the Jews, had been utterly destroyed by the falsification and adulteration of the Word. All these, both Jews and Gentiles, had after death streamed into the world of spirits, where at length their number was so increased and multiplied that they could be driven out only by a descent of God Himself and then only by the strength of His Divine arm. How this was done has been described in the little work on the Last Judgment (London, 1758). At the Lord’s first coming this increase of the hells was the work of idolaters, magicians, and falsifiers of the Word. This impending damnation Jehovah God removed by means of His Human, thus redeeming angels and men. From this it is clear that without the Lord’s coming no one could have been saved” (True Christian Religion, n. 121).
The incarnation of the Lord took place when the decline of religion, and the attendant expansion of darkness, had reached the point of crisis – humanity had approached the event horizon of a black hole – If the decline had been allowed to continue, all of humanity would have been consumed in evil, from which there could be no return. This decline took place simultaneously on Earth and in the spiritual world.
The basic story is known by the Christian world: The Lord was born on Earth to set all things into order. He is the Hero of Heroes, the redeemer and savior of all, not only then but now and in every moment of every day. He is life and we are receptacles of life from Him. He provides and gives us freedom as a means of salvation. If we are conscience it is inherent in us, from our whole being, to give thanks, to honor, to trust, and love Him sincerely and with humility. Because Jesus was born as a human in the natural world, and overcame all temptation put upon Him, subjugated all the forces of evil seeking to destroy humanity, and in doing so fulfilled all prophecy – He gained the power to never allow this to happen again! He is the innermost from the minutest material to the highest of the high (alpha and Omega). He promised he will keep good and evil in equilibrium on this earth, which is the basis of our freedom; and, that He will never allow the integrity of heaven to be compromised again. There is no salvation without freedom for this is the only way the bond with Him and each other can be forged. He knows all the pain and trials we go through in this life, and as we keep our trust in Him as best we can a bond is gradually formed that can’t be taken away.
This is the great good news – He is worthy to be trusted completely, and we can be saved. He wants us to seek Him and fight for Him in our hearts and life; He wants us, in time, to come Home to His kingdom more than anything, From the beginning He has prepared a place intended for you. He knows we have an innate need to trust, that we have a hard time, that we have fear, that we are faulted, but he knows us and loves us, and we can utterly trust in Him.
“The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
those who lived in a land of deep darkness
on them light has shined.
You have multiplied the nation,
you have increased its joy;
they rejoice before you
as with joy at the harvest” (Isaiah 9:2-4)