Christman Means Jesus Whether World Likes It or Not
It’s the Christmas season and that means whether the world at large likes it or not, Christians have permission to speak of the event that has brought salvation to humanity, for those who are willing and able to trust in Him for that salvation. While it’s true that Jesus was not born on December 25th, He was born into this world. December 25th is simply the day chosen to recognize that auspicious birth. God the Son chose to become a human being (while retaining His deity), born of a virgin. This is what is taught in Scripture.
Realizing that the church has simply adopted a date that coincides with a winter solstice is not reason enough to ignore the holiday, though I realize that there are groups of individuals like Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs) who do ignore the holiday, to their chagrin. To JWs, the concept of acknowledging a birthday (even our Savior’s), is tantamount to idolatry, so they ignore it. One of my aunts became a Jehovah’s Witness as an adult and refused to recognize anyone’s birthday…on their birthday. She had no problem sending a card after the fact though, which begs the question as to whether it’s only considered idolatry if the event of a birth is recognized on that particular day, but not on a day either side of the actual birthday.
There are also pockets of well-meaning Christians who are just as virulent in their belief that celebrating Christmas in any secular manner is the exact same thing as worshiping idols. It is very interesting how often passages of the Old Testament are used to support their beliefs, like verses that reference cutting down a tree and bringing it into the home like idolaters (cf. Jeremiah 10:1–4). Of course, during Jeremiah’s time, this was done specifically for the purpose of using that tree as a means of worship in the form of an Asherah pole. I know of no Christian today who places a Christmas tree in their home and bows before it or offers gifts to that tree. In fact, while many pagan cultures crafted Asherah poles and brought them either inside their homes or created “high places” for them on nearby hills, this is not done today, yet the connection for some Christians and cult members continues.
The Asherah pole was connected to the Canaanite religion with the direct worship of Ugaritic mother-goddess Asherah, consort of El. This was done centuries before Jesus came into this world. To say that Christmas or rather, the birth of Jesus, should not be celebrated because it smacks of idolatry is asinine, yet it persists among people who are both well-meaning and those who are fully deceived. Jesus attended celebrations like the wedding at Cana and even there, He turned water into wine, which could literally be seen as His gift to the bride and bridegroom (cf. John 2:1-12).
The birth of Jesus into this world should be recognized and celebrated. It actually gives Christians permission to wish people a “Merry CHRISTmas!” and to even talk about the real reason for the season. Of course the world doesn’t like that and has done its best to move the holiday away from Jesus by making it politically incorrect to say anything about Him, preferring instead to simply say things like “Happy Holidays” or “Seasons Greetings,” if that. The truth is that without Jesus, there would be no celebration on December 25th and I think Christians should be the most vocal about wishing everyone a “Merry Christmas” and explaining the real reason for this particular season.
Jesus came into this world as a fully human man, literally clothing His deity (covering it, but not eliminating it; Philippians 2), so that as He walked this earth and lived among us, He appeared to be one of us fully because He was/is human in every way. He has two natures; one human and one divine, unlike us. While Peter tells us we are partakers of the divine nature, it is only insofar as we gain strength from God to submit ourselves to Him and because we have been adopted into His family, for those who have received His salvation (cf. 2 Peter 1:4). Jesus chose to only use His deity when it coincided with the Father’s will for Him. His birth into human history must be celebrated. The angels celebrated His birth, as did the shepherds and Magi. People came from miles around, bringing Him gifts as He lay in a makeshift manger of a stable with animals surrounding Him.
The erroneous belief that by celebrating Christmas, Christians are somehow participating in ancient pagan worship practices is simply not true. But, insisting on this is like debating someone who believes the deity of Christ is not taught in Scripture. That’s certainly their opinion and while I’m quite aware of how they have gained that opinion from the Bible, I also believe they are completely in error over it. However, talking with them quickly turns into an unwinnable debate that is simply best left alone.
Folks, as Christians, we need to remember the true reason for Christmas. It is not about our giving gifts to one another, though we should be free to do that as well, in remembrance of God giving us the greatest gift. The real reason for celebrating Christmas is to remind us what God gave to us in the form of His Son, who lived a sinless life, yet died as though He was a sinner. In doing so, He offers salvation to all who will come to Him in faith believing that He is who He says He is and has done all that is necessary to procure the gift of eternal life for all who will come to Him.
I can think of no better reason than that to celebrate Christmas. In fact, it needs to be shouted from the rooftops and our lives should reflect His glory. If you do not want to celebrate Christmas by bringing a Christmas tree into your home, exchanging gifts with loved ones, and other things that happen during this time of year, that’s completely up to you. But please, do not make the mistake of thinking that you are the holy or truly religious person while those who choose to remember Jesus by joining in the celebration are not.
In my view, the birth of Jesus is something that should be celebrated daily in the lives of every authentic Christian. It should be done so that people see our lives, our joy, and wonder why we’re so filled with joy and peace in spite of the growing calamity that is visiting this world. Christians should not only pursue the true reason for this season during December, but it is something that we should press home to the world throughout the year.
I get it. I understand that some Christians are just sick and tired of the way Christmas has become so commercialized. It doesn’t have to be though, but the world is always going to celebrate Christmas the way they want to celebrate. This has little to no bearing on how Christians celebrate Christ’s birth. It’s fairly easy to join in the celebration of Christ’s birth without falling headlong into the commercialism that thrives in our global economy. It is, in fact, quite easy to do without getting caught up in the corporate hoopla.
Centuries ago, if a person brought a tree into their home, decorated it, and set it in a corner, it was clear to everyone then that the tree was dedicated to Asherah. No one would miss that fact, so God told the Israelites that they should not do that. In fact, God pointed out that they were to avoid every form of idolatry. God gave plenty of rules and laws through Moses that the people of Israel were to obey. The Church is not Israel and because of that, many of those rules do not apply to us, especially rules that are culturally based from hundreds or even a few thousand years ago.
Here’s one for you, from Deuteronomy 14:21 (ESV).
You shall not eat anything that has died naturally. You may give it to the sojourner who is within your towns, that he may eat it, or you may sell it to a foreigner. For you are a people holy to the Lord your God.
You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.
Read that last line again. Any idea what that means? Boiling a goat in its mother’s milk was often done as part of a pagan worship ritual; idolatry. It was how certain gods were worshiped. However, if I boiled a young goat in its mother’s milk today, no one would accuse me of worshiping idols, yet that was the very clear statement that would have been made way back then, during the time of Moses. The pagan nations had some extremely weird practices and God did not want them to become part of Israel’s practice.
If I happen to cook part of a young goat in goat’s milk on the stove now, would you accuse me of worshiping idols or would you simply think I was preparing dinner? Paul addresses this very clearly in his letter to the 1 Corinthians 8 when he talks to them about eating foods sacrificed to idols. Ultimately, he states that if you are visiting someone and they put a plate of food before you for dinner, eat it and enjoy it, giving thanks to God first for that provision. If however, they tell you that it was food sacrificed to the idols they worship, you should not participate. Why? For their sake, not yours. It would give the false impression that you agreed with them. It wasn’t that eating foods sacrificed to idols was bad for Christians. It wasn’t (cf. v. 4). We must be careful to not cause someone to get the wrong impression by eating something they told us was sacrificed to their idols. I cannot imagine that happening today, at least not in America, but certainly, on the mission field, that might possibly occur.
I cannot imagine anyone putting a plate of food before me and then telling me that the meat I was about to eat had been sacrificed to Beelzebub, can you? Even if it was, according to Paul, it would make no difference to me personally, but for their sake, I should decline to eat it.
It is the same thing with Christmas trees in our home. We bring them in for a completely different purpose than the people of Jeremiah’s day did. Then, it was a form of idolatry and outright worship of Asherah. Today, that is most definitely not the case.
Christians should be using this season to spread the gospel. Instead, some avoid the holiday at all costs for fear of being seen by God as idolaters. It’s up to you what you do with this holiday. As for me and my house? We will worship the Lord this holiday season and make His Name known to as many people as possible.
Entry filed under: Agenda 21, Atheism and religion, christianity, Cultural Marxism, Demonic, devil worship, Emotional virtue, eternity, israel, Judaism, Life in America, new age movement, Political Correctness, Politically Correct, Politics, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation, second coming. Tags: asherah pole, ashteroth, christmas, christmas tree, god the son, idolatry, pagan.