In fact, many of what we think of as ancient Christmas traditions began in Victorian England only a little over a century ago! Some appeal to Jeremiah —4 to prohibit Christmas trees.
Celebrating Christmas in Asia
But this was written years before Christ was even born, and is referring to a tree chopped down for the wood to make an idol. This has nothing to do with modern Christmas trees, which are not worshipped.
Some of the earliest NT manuscripts also abbreviate sacred names Latin term nomina sacra , singular nomen sacrum , and they were written in all capitals i. Some critics object to the derivation of the word, making a connection to the Roman Catholic Mass. So the Christ Mass is the celebration of God the Father sending God the Son on a specific mission to man, in becoming one of us.
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Also, other languages call the same celebration by terms having nothing to do with missa. Another point to add comes from the feast of Hanukkah.
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This included lighting the Menorah, the multi-part candle, and the story goes that one day's supply of oil lasted all eight days. Many Messianic Jews even make the celebration into an illustration of the Messiah. The other candles represent believers in Him, both Jew and Gentile, who should show His light, not hide it under a bushel Matthew Under the Law of Christ, we are all free to choose whether to celebrate Christmas or refrain from this celebration.
The claim that Christmas is pagan fails on objective historical and logical grounds, and the 25 December date originally came from a Jewish tradition and pagans plagiarized this date. Finally, God is the creator of the day-night cycle, so He owns all days; no day is owned by Satan or pagans. We have supplied this link to an article on an external website in good faith.
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Related Media. References and notes Tighe, W. Return to text. Augustine, On the Trinity 4 :5, Tr. Philip Schaff, ; newadvent. See Bethlehem Climate History, myweather2. Abshire, B. Available via web.
Helpful Resources. Christianity for Skeptics. Soft cover. Hard cover.
Kevin M. US January 3rd, It was likely unthinkable that we would need to be! Notably missing are such things as decorations, gift-giving, and the like. US January 1st, I believe it boils down to this … we are obligated to worship in spirit and in truth! There is nothing accurate about the Christmas celebration; from the age of the savior when the wise men arrived to the reasons for the gifts a reading of the event in Matthew will let you know how accurate the Christmas celebration is.
Look at everyone who celebrates Christmas but never worship Jesus Christ otherwise. The Christ of Christmas is loved by all but the Christ of the Bible is hated. Jonathan Sarfati January 2nd, There is no comparison. Jeremiah 10 forbids making idols from trees, not decorating them. Romans 14 says we may celebrate a day or not celebrate it. I am not sure what you mean about the Matthew nativity account.
Richard P. CA January 1st, Jonathan, thanks for your response to my earlier comment. As you say, your article indeed states that celebrating Christmas is not commanded by Scripture, and that Christians are free to refrain from this celebration.
But your article does not come across as neutral: its main aim is evidently to support those people who choose to celebrate Christmas. I know that CMI declines to take a position on a variety of issues that are peripheral to your main focus. For example, you tend not to write articles about the mode or subjects of baptism, or about the details of eschatology.
So in that case, why would you take the time to write a long, detailed article in defense of one side of a debate that involves something not even touched on, let alone recommended, by Scripture? Might it not be the case that he simply attended a part of the festival with the purpose of teaching the assembled crowds?
We wrote this article for several reasons. Another is that like most people in the west, we have Christmas holidays and Christmas specials, and a few people complain about it, usually based on false history, sometimes based on that historically atrocious Hislop book The Two Bablyons.
Celebrating Jesus Christ This Christmas
A third is to remind readers of the liberty we have in Christ to choose to celebrate or not to celebrate, just as we have the right to eat all animals or abstain from eating them. It seems like special pleading to think that Jesus went up to the Hanukkah celebration without celebrating it. I seriously doubt that He went there to protest against celebrating it, since surely that would have been mentioned. Peter L. AU December 30th, I agree that Christmas is not explicitly condoned or condemned in scripture, but would like to add my perspective to the matter. Christmas is a celebration of human origin, unlike baptism or communion, which are commands to be followed by believers.
One serious problem with Christians celebrating something without clear scriptural origins is that there are no boundaries defining what is or is not acceptable practice to be included in that celebration. I believe that we need to be extremely careful with engaging in religious practices of human origin, which Christmas and Easter are, in spite of Biblical connections. Colossians warns against rules based on human teachings, as does The Lord Jesus in Matt , quoting Isaiah I see Christmas and Easter as poorly mixed conglomerates, Christian observances coexisting with practices of decidedly unchristian origins, and I think we need to approach them with extreme care and discernment.
If certain customs are antibiblical, e. If they are biblically neutral, such as gift giving, then we are free to partake or refrain from partaking. Nicholas C. ZA December 30th, I always think that theology and maths have a lot in common. Stephen W. AU December 29th, Even Calvin in the link you provide for him, refers to Christmas having been ceased by the Reformers Farel, etc.
Zwingli and the Reformation in German Switzerland abolished Christmas. Our authority is not church history, but if we are going to refer to church history, we should do so in a fair and realistic manner. Nothing in Tertullian says that Christmas was a copy of any of these pagan festivals. Saturnalia is too early: it was on the 17th, and was later extended to the 23rd. This was just one of many suggested dates: Clement c.
Christmas was celebrated in Rome AD under Constantine, and spread from there. If you have any real evidence of Christians annually celebrating Christmas on Dec 25 before Aurelian chose that date for Sol Invictus in , please provide it. It is special pleading to deny that Jesus celebrated Hanukkah. There was a lot of unity about the date of Jesus' conception date around the same date as His crucifixion. Then, very early on, the Western church came to accept the 25 December date, while the Eastern church, based on the same reasoning, came to 6 January.