CHRISTMAS — 25th DECEMBER
The fact of the pagan origin of the festival of Christmas on the 25th December, namely, as birthday of the Sun deity, is admitted by all scholars. The Messiah could not have been born in mid-winter, 25th December, as the shepherds were out in the fields, watching over their flock by night — Luke 2:8. In Israel no one would permit their flock out on a winter night. The date of our Messiah’s birth has been calculated to be in fall. In any case, we are not commanded to remember the day of His birth, rather, to remember the day of His death. According to Scripture, this is what the early believers did, 1 Cor. 11:26. The Catholic Encyclopedia says, “Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the Church. Irenaeus and Tertullian omit it from their lists of feasts.” Wherefrom does this Christmas on 25 December originate? Sir James Frazer says, “The largest pagan religious cult which fostered the celebration of December 25 as a holiday . . . was the pagan sun- worship, Mithraism . . . This winter festival was called . . . ‘the Nativity of the SUN.’ Mithraism was the fastest growing cult just prior to the year 321 and was the major rival of Christianity. Franz Cumont, perhaps the greatest scholar of Mithraism, wrote, quoting Minucius Felix, “The Mithraists also observed Sun-day and kept sacred the 25th of December as the birthday of the Sun. Many scholars have pointed out how the Sun- worshipping Mithraists, the Sun-worshipping Manicheans and the Christians were all syncretised and reconciled when Constantine led the take-over by Christianity, even if it meant the latter’s surrender of most vital Scriptural truths, especially its Hebrew roots.
However, other Sun-worshipping groups were included too, because of the general importance and popularity of Sol Invictus, the Invincible Sun-deity. Mario Righetti, a renowned Catholic liturgist, writes, “the Church of Rome, to facilitate the acceptance of the faith by the pagan masses, found it convenient to institute the 25th December as the feast of the temporal birth of Christ, to divert them from the pagan feast, celebrated on the same day in honour of the ‘Invincible Sun’, Mithras. Sir James Frazer wrote, “If the Mithraic mysteries were indeed a Satanic copy of a divine original, we are driven to conclude that Christianity took a leaf out of the devil’s book when it fixed the birth of the Saviour on the 25th December; for there can be no doubt that the day in question was celebrated as the birthday of the Sun by the heathen before the Church . . . transferred the Nativity The mixing of pagan Sun-worship and Christianity is exemplified by the testimony of a Syrian scholiast on Bar Salibi, who said, “It was a custom of the heathen to celebrate on the same 25th of December the birthday of the Sun, at which they kindled lights in token of festivity. In these solemnities and festivities the Christians also took part.” Practically all the known Sun-deities were born on the 25th December. In S.E. Titcomb, Aryan Sun myths, the Origin of Religions, we find it cited, quoted from primary sources, that the following Sun-deities were all born on 25 December, according to their legends: Crishna (Vishnu), Mithra (Mithras), Osiris, Horus, Hercules, Dionysus (Bacchus), Tammuz, Indra, Buddha. Therein we also read of the Scandinavian goddess Frigga in whose honour a “Mother-night” festival was held at the winter solstice (+ – 25 December), as well as a similar great feast of Yule, where a boar was offered at the winter solstice in honour of Frey.
Thus we find the three great days of Christianity (as it is practised by most today), namely Sun-day, Easter and Christmas, all three having had its origin in the Sun-worship of the pagan nations. “How did these nations serve their mighty ones? I also will do likewise,” Deut. 12:30. This is exactly what the true Mighty One, Yahuweh, forbade His people to do. The keeping of days, especially days of festivity, is perhaps the most popular amongst all religions “And take heed, lest you lift your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun, the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you feel driven to worship them and serve them, which Yahuweh your Elohim has given to all the peoples under the whole heaven as a heritage,” Deut. 4:19. The New English Bible and the Good News Bible render this more interpretatively, “. . . your Elohim has given these to all other peoples for them to worship.” The prophet’s warning of Eze. 8:9-16, the “wicked abominations” of Sun- worship which had been fused and mixed with True Worship, is equally applicable for our day. What greater proof do we need of the most alarming fact that Elohim has indeed given us up to worship the host of heaven, especially the Sun! These Sun-worshipping festivity days had been used to win over to the Church, the pagan masses of the Roman Empire in which the Sun was the leading power in the Roman pantheon. The weekly Sun-day, the spring Easter Sun-day, the birth of the Sun-deity on 25 December — all three of these festival days originated from, and were instituted by pagans in honour of the Sun-deity.
Is the Savior “Merry” about Christmas?
Some startling facts
Sometimes tradition is acceptable and perhaps even pleasing in the sight of our Heavenly Father.
But what about Christmas? Is it possible that Christmas is a tradition that honors the Messiah vocally, but actually is displeasing to Him?
Mark 7:9 – All too well you reject the commandment…that you may keep your tradition
He didn’t like the traditions of the Scribes and Pharisees because they transgressed other commandments. So how did the Christmas observance get its start?
The following is a quote from the 2000 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 11 ; page 390.
“During the later periods of Roman history, sun worship gained in importance and ultimately led to what has been called a ‘solar monotheism.’ Nearly all the gods of the period were possessed of Solar qualities, and both Christ and Mithra acquired the traits of solar deities. The feast of Sol and Victus (open unconquered Sun) on December 25th was celebrated with great joy, and eventually this date was taken over by the Christians as Christmas, the birthday of Christ.”
Notice how it says “both Christ and Mithra acquired the traits of solar deities?” Pardon, but are there any alarm bells going off here?
In ancient times, somewhere around 300AD, the Christians were apparently trying to get more converts so they tried to make the Messiah more like the idols found in sun worship—all under the guise of making Him more attractive to pagans.
Thus, they brought various elements of the December 25th “feast of the unconquered sun” into their worship by saying that December 25th was actually the Messiah’s birthday, which was simply not true.
This is the origin of Christmas and this is why we have various pagan-rooted traditions accompanying this observance.
But we don’t win the world by imitating the world; we win the world by imitating the Messiah!
When the apostle Paul was writing to the Ephesians, a group of believers who were surrounded by idol worship, he said:
Ephesians 5:11 – have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
So they should never have tried to copy idolatrous feasts. Rather, they should have exposed them for the fraud and lie that they were. Creating a new lie by saying the Messiah was born on Dec. 25th, the birthday of various sun gods, and having Him “acquire the traits of solar deities/gods” is not something our Savior would be “merry” about.
So when was His birthday? We can learn by studying the timing of the priestly course of Zacharias (Luke 1:5), John the Baptist’s father, and adding six months to that time period (Luke 1:24-26). This would place Yahushua the Messiah’s birth in either the spring or fall. The scriptures do not supply us with an exact date of birth, but it certainly was not in the winter.
We know the date of His death (on Passover). Scripture does tell us the time of many other important events in biblical history such as the founding of the temple (first day of the biblical year), the timing of the Exodus from Egypt (also on Passover), the date that the flood began and many other events.
But the date of the Messiah’s birth? Scripture is silent. Even though He could look into the future and know that there would be billions of people who wanted to celebrate His birthday, He never told us when it was. If He wanted us to celebrate His birthday, He surely would have told us when it was.
The pagan customs associated with Christmas are clearly condemned in the scriptures. Here is one of them:
Jeremiah 10:2 – “Do not learn the way of the Gentiles; Do not be dismayed at the signs of heaven, For the Gentiles are dismayed at them. 3 For the customs of the peoples are futile; For one cuts a tree from the forest, The work of the hands of the workman, with the ax. 4 They decorate it with silver and gold; They fasten it with nails and hammers so that it will not topple.
First of all, it says in this verse “Do not learn the way of the Gentiles” Don’t even learn it, let alone practice it and incorporate it into the worship of Yahweh our Heavenly Father. After all, shouldn’t the roots of our worship be in the scriptures, rather than paganism?
Secondly, it says that the Gentiles were dismayed at the signs of heaven. History tells us that when the sun began to go further away from the earth and the days grew shorter in the winter, the sun worshipping Gentiles were “dismayed”, and feared that the sun would not return. So they held certain festivals just after the time of the Winter Solstice when it did begin to return. This return of the sun is why December 25th is the birthday of so many solar deities/gods.
One of the customs the pagans had was to decorate a tree that they had cut down and fasten it so that it would not topple. The evergreen tree seemed to not be bothered by the winter so it would have been a logical choice. We see the same copycat custom existing even today–called the Christmas tree.
So we are told to not to learn the way of the Gentiles. And here He even goes so far as describe a custom that is a way of the heathen. Since He tells us that this is a heathen custom and He clearly condemned the practice of it, shouldn’t we avoid it? The placing of gifts under the tree is much like the heathen who offered various gifts to their idols, and then kneeling before the tree to receive them back again.
This is one of many other such customs, including the gift giving. Why on earth would we give each other gifts when it’s supposed to be the Messiah’s birthday? It isn’t our birthday, is it?
All of this has led to ridiculous commercialism, with various “Black Friday” sales in corporate America. But “Black Friday” sales are only a smokescreen. It may be the day when corporate America goes in the black, but most other Americans end up going in the red.
Biblically, it is wrong to take traditions of pagans and try apply them to the worship of the Heavenly Father. Proof of this is in how He dealt with the children of Israel when they were about to enter into the promised land. He said:
Deuteronomy 12:29 – ”…do not inquire after their gods, saying, `How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.’
Notice that it doesn’t say, “Let us serve their gods” but “how did these nations serve their gods?”
Deuteronomy 12:31-32 “You shall not worship Yahweh your Mighty One in that way…
32 Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.
So He told them to not worship Him in the way of the heathen. He didn’t want them to take heathen customs and try to honor Him with it. He is not honored by them. He said that they should not add to His commandments, nor take away from them.
Christmas takes pagan festivals and traditions and applies them to the worship of our Creator. This is clearly shown to be wrong.
Think about it: Would it be right to take an observance invented by Satanists and then incorporate the customs from that observance into our worship of the Creator? Surely not.
Do we realize that all paganism is Satanism? Satan is the one behind all pagan worship. And whatever god the idolaters worship, they (perhaps unknowingly) are actually worshipping Satan.
1 Corinthians 10:20 – Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons…
You cannot drink the cup of the Master and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Master’s table and of the table of demons.
We cannot mix the profane with the holy, and we cannot mix lies with truth, and we cannot mix the table of our Savior with the table of demons. We must choose one, or the other.
The very premise of the Christmas observance isn’t based on truth. The Messiah wasn’t born December 25th. He didn’t ask us to celebrate His birthday, or tell us to set up a tree in our house and decorate it or our houses with anything. Santa Claus doesn’t exist. There are no reindeer that fly and he isn’t going to come down the chimney and leave any gifts. Everything is a lie. Is our Savior the originator of this observance? Or is it the father of lies? Our Savior condemned the leaders of that generation for teaching lies, and he said that the devil is the father of lies:
John 8:44b – When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.
If the devil is the father of lies, and this observance of Christmas is marked with all kinds of lies, who is the author of this ‘holiday?’ It seems to me that with all the lies and the roots in idolatry, satan’s fingerprints are actually all over it.
Revelation 22:14 – Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. 15 But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie.
If we want to practice a lie, we need only celebrate Christmas and we will be doing just that. So let’s abide in the truth, and forsake vain traditions which the bible speaks so clearly against.