XMAS – THOSE CRAZY HOLD OUT CHRISTIANS !
December 24, 2001
THOSE CRAZY, HOLD-OUT, MIXED-UP CHRISTIANS
"What’s the matter, preacher man, you playing Dr. Killjoy? You a party basher? You think you’re too good to celebrate the birth of the greatest man who ever lived? Everybody’s doing it, man! The whole country's doing it. And here you are, you and those other crazies like yourself, all of you holding out because of a few minor technicalities. O.k. so Christmas is pagan in origin, so what? So Dec. 25th isn't the birthday of Christ, and the apostles and early Christians didn't celebrate His birth. Sooo....Who cares? What difference does it make? Look, man, this is the one time of the year when our children have more fun than any other, and when more people are talking about Jesus!
That’s right, they’re talking about our Jesus! And then there's all those terrific Christmas concerts and Christmas carols, and happy faces, and happy reunions, and gift openings, and food enough to sink a ship! Wow! But what do you and other social misfits like yourself want to do? Tear it down! That's right, mess it up! You want my opinion? You're a bunch of self-righteous, nit-picking, Bible quoting, fault-finding Scrooges, all of you! Bury Scrooge, brother, turn up the music, put a smile on your face and join the crowd. It's time to celebrate! Here, have a tree! Dress it up!"
"So what?.. who cares?.. what does it matter?" That’s really the problem? Think of the few professing Christians you know who are concerned enough about this Holiday to even find out if it does matter! In response to this growing apathy, I have drawn up what I believe are ten sound Biblical reasons why this subject does matter, deeply and eternally.
1. THE WORD OF GOD, we're told, "throughly furnishes" the believer "unto all good works." 2 Tim. 3:16-18 Since it does not furnish us to celebrate the birthday of Christ, how can it be a "good work" — or how can it please God? Heb. 11:6 tells us that "without faith it is impossible to please Him." The source of faith? "Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God....." Rom. 10:17. Since this Book of faith does not instruct us to observe the birthday of Christ, why do Christians observe it?
2. TRADITIONS OF MEN vs. THE BIBLE: Careful students of the Word know that the day of Christ's birth is not recorded in the Bible, neither are we told how many wise men there were, nor do the Scriptures record that they were Kings of the Orient, and that the star came and stood over the manger where the Christ child lay. Yet these things are presented as undeniable facts in songs, pageants, plays, books, radio and t.v. Obviously, tradition has replaced the Word of God. But God says, "Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, AFTER THE TRADITION OF MEN....." Col. 2:8.
The power of tradition to shackle and control the minds of those who come to worship at its shrine, is never more evident than at this time of year when sleigh-bells, Rudy the red-nosed reindeer, Santa Clauses, Christmas trees, lights and gifts, manger scenes and tinseled, starlit window dressing, light up homes, malls and downtown shopping centers.
3. THE MONEY CHANGERS: Regardless of their religious persuasions, businessmen all over America join hands in sweet accord to make merchandise of the birthday of Christ. Some can't even wait until Thanksgiving to begin their "Chri$tma$ adverti$ing. Soon the ring of sleigh bells and cash registers drown out the memory and sounds of thanksgiving---and the feverish rush to buy gifts is on. Mer- chants again brace themselves for a lucrative. Sanctimonious touch- down.
4. "HIGHLY ESTEEMED:" Christ said, "That which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God." Luke 16:15 Christian friend, do you know any other day of the year that is more highly esteemed in America than this thing called Xmas?
5. THE ORIGIN OF YULETIDE: Encyclopedia Americana—Vol. 6; page 623. "Christmas, derived from the medieval Christes Masse, the Mass of Christ, the feast commemorating the birth of Jesus, observed by the Western [Roman Catholic] Church annually on the 25th of December.....In the 5th century, the church ordered the birth of the Savior to be celebrated forever on the day of the old Roman feast of the birth of Sol (the sun) as no certain knowledge of the day of Christ's birth existed. The holly, the mistletoe, the yule log, the wassail bowl are RELICS OF PRE-CHRISTIAN TIMES."
Encyclopedia Britannica—14th edition, vol. 5; p. 642— "Christmas Customs are an evolution from times that long antedated the Christian period—-a descent from seasonal, pagan, religious and national practices, hedged about with legend and tradition. Their seasonal connections with the pagan feasts of the winter solstice relate them to the beginning of time."
6. THE WORD "CHRISTMAS" is derived from the contraction of two words, "CHRIST" and "MASS." the Christes masse, or the Mass of Christ. What is the MASS? Roman Catholicism teaches that it is but one of many essential steps to salvation. In the celebration of the offering of Christ in the Mass, we're expected to believe that the priest, by the "miracle of transubstantiation," turns the bread and wine into the physical body and blood of Jesus Christ, which are then offered as a daily sacrifice of Christ for remission of sins and the ultimate salvation of its members.
Hebrews 10:12 & 26, however, disagrees. Rome's own Confraternity Douay Version of the Bible tells us that because Christ "OFFERED ONE SACRIFICE FOR SINS.....THERE REMAINS NO LONGER A SACRIFICE FOR SINS." Confirmed in Hebrews 7:27, we're told that Christ offered Himself for sins "ONCE FOR ALL." Strange that Rome's clearly expressed purpose for the Mass does not coincide with her own version of the Bible.
7. THE "CHRISTMAS TREE," as we know it today, has descended from a long line of trees used for centuries by pagans in the idolatrous worship of their hand-carved gods that could neither go, see, hear nor speak.
In communicating with Israel about this matter, God said, "Thus saith the Lord, learn not the way of the heathen.....for the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest.....they deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not, They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not; they must needs be borne, because they cannot go...." [must be thrown out and carted off after the idolatrous festivities are over]
FOOTNOTE:: God says of trees, "Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil; Neither also is it in them to do good." What most Christians fail to realize is that behind the use of the tree is a force, a power, an authority of evil that perpetuates the annual practice of cutting a tree out of the forest, decorating it with silver and gold, and with stars, bells, angels, animals, lights and snow Read 1 Cor. 11:20 in context. Brethren, demons, "the rulers of the darkness of this world," are behind every religious event, celebration, holiday and custom not authorized by the Word of God. If you doubt this, read Eph. 6:12 with 1 Cor. 10:19-20 thoughtfully. Paul concludes, "....and I would not that ye should have fellowship with demons."
Today, the tree remains as popular as ever, both with the majority of believers and non-believers alike. Thus the words of the Lord Jesus to the Scribes and Pharisees are as applicable to this present generation as they were in His day: "Ye [have] made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition...full well ye reject the commandment of God that ye may keep your own tradition." Matt. 15:6; Mark 7 This warning sign is emblazoned in Col. 2:8 "Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit AFTER THE TRADITION OF MEN...."
8. EXCUSES OF THOUGHTLESS CHRISTIANS ""Hey, brother, everybody's celebrating the birthday of Christ, why aren't you?" God says, "Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil." Exod. 23:2 "Well, I can't see that it hurts anything." God says, "Whatsoever is not of faith is sin." Sin hurts. "But it gives our children a lot of pleasure." You mean it gives you a lot of pleasure. "Just the same, it reminds unbelievers of the birthday of Christ and makes it easier to reach them for Christ." The Bible asks this question: "Shall we do evil, that good may come"? Romans 3:8 "But think how the poor and homeless are cared for this time of year" God says, "Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice."1 Sam. 15:22. Incidentally, who cares for the poor and homeless AFTER "Christmas"? Will their needs be any less in January or February? Where will the "Spirit of Christmas" have gone during the two coldest months of the year? For the vast majority, that spirit will have become non-existent!
9, "SANTA CLAUS" — A harmless legend? Once your child has been shockingly disillusioned regarding "Santa," he may find it far more difficult to believe the gospel. You lied to him about big-hearted "Santa," now he may secretly distrust you concerning his need for Christ. And, rest assured, Satan will be there to fan the flames of disbelief.
Dr. Paul Popenoe, in one of his columns entitled, "Your Family and You," once wrote that "Parents should not lie to their children," He then quoted Dr. Brock Chisholm, former director of the World Health Organization who said, "Among all the lies that parents commonly tell their children, I believe the highly organized one about Santa Claus is the most destructive."
Think about it, Parent. During his most formative years (1-5) you repeatedly impressed on your child that "to receive gifts from Santa Claus you must be good." A few years later, in order to win him over to Christ, you share the gospel. But, to be saved from the guilt and penalty of sin, your growing, searching, inquisitive youngster must now realize that he is NOT good, that, "..... all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.... [and that]... "there is none good, no not one." Rom. 3:23; Rom. 3:10-18
First you taught him to "be good." Now you are telling him, "there is none good." How these mixed signals impact your youngster is crucial to your presentation of the gospel. I would humbly suggest that as you work with him, you first admit where you sinned in lying to him about how he must be good in order to receive gifts from a fake Santa Claus. Then build on that confession. And pray God that He will overrule your folly by helping your son, early on, to truly understand his lost condition. If we are all basically good, as the devil, liberals and New Agers would have us believe, who needs a Savior? But the Lord Jesus said, "They that are whole need not a physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous [those who believe they are "good enough"] but sinners [members of Adam's family who realize their lost and sinful state] to repentence." Mk. 2:17
10. CHRIST'S BIRTHDAY: If your family held a birthday party for you today, who would receive the gifts? Would your friends and kinfolk give their gifts, intended for you, to each other and let it go at that? How absurd! Yet friend and foe of Christ, alike, exchange gifts with one another in order to celebrate the birthday of Christ. How tragic, how spiritually insane!
A CLOSING REMARKS: Friends, shall we obey the Word of God and quit learning "the way of the heathen," or shall we go on blinding ourselves to the sober warnings of God and observe again with a Christ-rejecting, Christ-hating world, a holiday fraught with paganism, debauchery, legends, traditions and vain customs of men? Will we turn from the religious traditions because God commands it, or shall we join unbelievers in celebrating a program that is largely characterized by religious festivities, lying to children, drunkenness, gluttony, revellings, immorality, drug-abuse, a dramatic rise in car accidents, murders, suicides, depression, and the list goes on and on.
May God help us who love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity, to be like David of old who said, "Therefore, I esteem all Thy precepts concerning all things to be right; AND I HATE EVERY FALSE WAY." PSA. 119:128. Let's truly despise the things that God despises and cleave to those things that Scripturally honor His Son. And may we not fear to take an unflinching, uncompromising stand alongside the risen Christ during this day of His rejection! As unpopular as it may be, we'll be glad in eternity that we did!
This is being e-mailed to you in the all-sufficient Name of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Bible supported criticisms and suggestions welcome.
Sincerely, Bob Thompson—a servant and soldier of Christ our risen Lord.
"GODLINESS IS PROFITABLE UNTO ALL THINGS, HAVING PROMISE OF THE LIFE THAT NOW IS, AND OF THAT WHICH IS TO COME." 1 TIMOTHY 4:8
Return to Navigation