By Jim Jester
It shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth. (Deut. 28:1)
Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light. (1 Peter 2:9)
We have all heard well-meaning Christians say “keep Christ in Christmas.” I too have contended for this, but I soon realized this was a useless assertion. Is Christmas of Christian origin that was paganized, or of pagan origin that was Christianized? The answer to this question should determine if it is accepted or rejected by those honestly wanting to serve God. This article/sermon should give anyone enough evidence to answer this question.
Is Jesus the “reason for the season?” If He were, then we should recognize Christmas as His birth and forsake the pagan customs that perverted it. In other words, “keep Christ in Christmas.” However, just the opposite is true. The evidence leads us away from December 25 as the birth of Jesus. He was never the reason for the season. The supposed Christian Christmas is simply a deceptive lie. I shall explain, on several fronts, why Christ should be taken out of Christmas.
Not the Birth of Jesus
How would you like it if everyone you know wished you a “happy birthday” on the wrong day, or even the birthday of your worst enemy? Would you not be just a bit offended?
We do not know the date of Jesus’ birth but we can know the approximate time. Jesus was likely born in the fall, because Scripture recounts that sheep were in the fields (Luke 2:8)—a situation that would not exist in December because of the cold climate. In addition, it was tax time and Joseph, Mary and the baby were traveling to pay this tribute. This too would not have been in the winter. It would have been right after the harvest (in the fall). Jesus was also six months younger (Luke 1:26–36) than John the Baptist, who was conceived in late June after his father had served the eighth course of Abijah (Luke 1:5; 1 Chronicles 24:10, 19). The historian, Josephus, explains that 24 courses of priests served in the temple for weeklong periods twice a year, beginning in the month of Nisan. John, conceived in late June, would mean that Jesus was conceived in late December, thus being born nine months later in late September.
It is the opinion of many that Jesus was born on one of the Feast days in our Sept.-Oct. (See Leviticus 23:26-44). Two of these Feasts occur in the latter part of the seventh month of Israel’s sacred calendar, the Day of Atonement (Tishri 10) and the Feast of Tabernacles (Tishri 15-22, lasting 8 days). Jesus Christ has prophetically fulfilled all the various Feasts of our God. For example, we know that he died on the Passover and the Holy Spirit came on Pentecost. It would be logical then to conclude that he was born on one of these important days. According to Haberman in Tracing Our Ancestors, 1934, p. 65, “…The Messiah was born in 4 B.C., on the Feast of Tabernacles, the 15th of Tizri, which fell that year on a Sabbath (Saturday), October 4th, ‘And the Word became flesh, and dwelt (tabernacled) among us.’” There is no proof, however, and there is no prophecy about a particular day in the Bible, only that a Messiah would come.
The Bible does not give us the births of Jesus, the apostles, prophets, nor does it tell us to even celebrate birthdays! The idea that Jesus was born on December 25 is a known fabrication. Of all the days in the year that could have been chosen for an alleged birthday celebration, why that day?
A Catholic invention
Aurelian proclaimed Mithraism the official religion of the Roman Empire in A.D. 274 and Natalis Solis Invicti (Birthday of the Invincible Sun) became an official holiday. Christian worship was made legal in the Roman Empire by Constantine the Great (Edict of Nicomedia, also known as Edict of Toleration) in 313 A.D. Thus, the two focal celebrations of both religions occurred on December 25 – Mithras’s sun regeneration and the Christian nativity. According to St. Chrysostom, Bishop of Constantinople, the “Roman Church purposefully placed the keeping of Christmas between two popular folk festivals, Saturnalia and the Kalends of January, in order to give Christians something to celebrate about while others were engaged in secular merrymaking.” The Christmas nativity gradually replaced Mithras’s birthday ceremony. “It is reasonable to suppose that the conjunction of Mithras’s birthday with a holiday honoring Jesus Christ’s nativity would eventually lead to the assumption that Jesus was born on December 25. This transference, however, is not explicitly documented” (Ball State University web site).
Official documents refer to December 25 as Christmas Day for the first time in A.D. 324. One of the first known Nativity celebrations occurred at the Church of Rome in A.D. 336. Pope Julius I officially designated December 25 to celebrate Christ’s birth in the year 350. Pope Liberias instituted the Nativity Feast in December of 353 (Catholic Encyclopedia). We read in Werner Keller’s book The Bible as History (p. 331) the following admission:
Under the Roman emperor Justinian (A.D. 527-565) it was recognized as an official holiday. An old Roman festival played a major part in the choice of this particular day. December 25 in ancient Rome was the ‘Dies Natali Invictus,’ ‘the birthday of the unconquered,’ the day of the winter solstice and at the same time, in Rome, the last day of the Saturnalia, which had long since degenerated into a week of unbridled carnival....
Jesse Hurlbut, in his book, The Story of the Christian Church, laments the results of Constantine making Christianity the state religion, free from all persecution. From that time, he points out the church became totally subverted by politics and self-seeking opportunists.
The establishment of Christianity as the state religion became a curse. Everybody sought membership in the church, and nearly everybody was received. Both good and bad, sincere seekers after God and hypocritical seekers after gain, rushed into the communion. Ambitious, worldly, unscrupulous men sought office in the church for social and political influence.... The services of worship increased in splendor, but were less spiritual and hearty than those of former times. The forms and ceremonies of paganism gradually crept into the worship. Some of the old heathen feasts became church festivals with change of name and of worship [p. 79, emphasis mine].
What is the Mass of Christ-mass?
The Mass as a Re-presentation of the Crucifixion: This re-presentation, as Fr. John Hardon notes in his Pocket Catholic Dictionary, “means that because Christ is really present in his humanity, in heaven and on the altar, he is capable now as he was on Good Friday of freely offering himself to the Father.” This understanding of the Mass hinges on the Catholic doctrine of the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. When the bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, Christ is truly present on the altar. If the bread and wine remained merely symbols, the Mass could still be a memorial of the Last Supper, but not a re-presentation of the Crucifixion. This does not mean, as some critics of Catholicism claim, that the Church teaches that, in the Mass, we sacrifice Christ again. Rather, the original sacrifice of Christ on the Cross is presented to us once more [ask.com].
This is doublespeak and a word game. A “re-presentation” of the crucifixion? The “original sacrifice” of Christ is presented to us once more? According to them, we who criticize their doctrine, as Martin Luther did, just do not understand. But here is what the Bible says in Hebrews 7:27, “Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.” [Also Heb. 9:25-26, 28; 10:10] The Bible plainly teaches that Jesus Christ was offered “once.”
Since we know Jesus Christ was offered once, perhaps we should consider the idea that the Catholic Church is offering people a false Jesus, and they are giving their adherents the body and blood of this counterfeit Christ in their Eucharist.
Perhaps also, Catholicism has a preoccupation with death, for the word, “mas” of Christ-mas is short for “massacre.” I ask, what is there to celebrate about the massacre of Jesus Christ? The Catholic Church crucifies Jesus over and over again with their Mass, and even believe they partake of His literal blood each time. How sadistic and evil this is! The powers of evil certainly rejoiced when they killed Him and could have shouted “merry Christmas;” the Christian, however, honors the atonement made with the blood of the New Covenant.
Christmas was the alleged attempt by the Roman church to Christianize the popular pagan customs of the day centering on the winter solstice, one of the major festival periods in the ancient world. “Historians note the birth of many solar saviors and dying gods is celebrated at this time, usually on December 25th” and that “Christmas is a wonderful amalgamation of many religious traditions, ancient and modern, pagan, Zoroastrian, Jewish, Mithraic, and Christian” (The Pagan Book of Days, p. 132–133).
Amalgamation? Does the Bible teach us to mix the holy with the unholy? No way! The Pilgrim founders knew their Bible and actually outlawed Christmas celebrations. Christmas is a blend of several year-end festivals as celebrated in pagan Rome. T. G. Crippen writes in Christmas and Christmas Lore,
Now in December and the beginning of January there were several festivals which were intimately associated with the daily life of the Roman people. First, from the 17th to the 21st December, was the Saturnalia, the great Roman holiday.... One might call it the Feast of Topsy-turveydom; when slaves were allowed for a few days to enjoy the semblance of freedom, were waited upon by their masters, and chose from amongst themselves a mock king to preside over their revels. Next, on the 22nd, came Sigillaria, the Feast of Dolls, when a fair was held, and dolls and other toys, mostly of earthenware, were given to children. Then, on 25th, came Brumalia, otherwise Dies Natalis Invicti Solis, The Birthday of the Unconquered Sun, when the days began to lengthen after the solstice.... It is believed to have been instituted ... by the emperor Aurelian, in honour of Mithras, the Persian sun god... (p. 8-9).
The largest pagan religious cult, which fostered sun worship in the Greek and Roman worlds on December 25, was the cult of Mithraism. They called it “the Nativity of the Sun.” Mithras, was supposed to have been born at this time, but so were Osiris, Horus, Tammuz, Hercules, Bacchus, Adonis, and Jupiter – all the pagan Messiahs! This fact alone would seem to indicate that all these sun gods and deities trace their roots back to the original sun god of ancient Babylon, Nimrod. [See The Two Babylons, Alexander Hislop]
The facts of history prove that the customs of Christmas go back farther than the birth of Jesus Christ. The Egyptians also celebrated the rebirth of the sun in the form of an infant several thousand years before the Romans (see The Golden Bough, St. Martin’s ed., pp. 471–472). The tree goes back to the ancient Egyptian god Osiris. Many of the other customs come from other non-Christian empires such as Assyria and Babylon. These ancient customs can be easily researched. Hislop writes:
The Christmas tree, now so common among us, was equally common in Pagan Rome and Pagan Egypt. In Egypt that tree was the palm tree; in Rome it was the fir; the palm tree denoting the Pagan Messiah, as Baal-Tamar, the fir referring to him as Baal-Berith. The mother of Adonis, the Sun God and great mediatorial divinity, was mystically said to have been changed into a tree, and when in that state to have brought forth her divine son. If the mother was a tree, the son must have been recognized as the ‘Man the branch.’ And this entirely accounts for the putting of the Yule Log into the fire on Christmas Eve, and the appearance of the Christmas tree the next morning (The Two Babylons, p. 97).
According to the Bible, we are not to mix the holy with the unholy, yet this is exactly what the established church did. The church did not defeat paganism. Paganism invaded the church and seduced it from within! The professing Christian church became the new face of paganism. Only the names were changed. In some cases, even the old pagan names remained in place, such as in “Easter” (Ishtar)! Our God speaks to Christmas keepers today:
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, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. ... They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not (Jer. 10:2-4).
This is certainly a familiar Christmas custom. God forbids the “way” (manners or customs) of the heathen. There are 10 references in the Bible to the pagan “green tree” custom.
Jeremiah the prophet also reports other pagan customs of the ancient world, especially in regards to the date of December 25th:
And it came to pass in the seven and thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, in the five and twentieth day of the month, that Evilmerodach king of Babylon in the first year of his reign lifted up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah, and brought him forth out of prison, And spake kindly unto him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings that were with him in Babylon, and changed his prison garments and he did continually eat bread before him all the days of his life. And for his diet, there was a continual diet given him of the king of Babylon every day a portion until the day of his death, all the days of his life (Jer. 52:31-34).
This was the period of the Babylonian captivity when King Jehoiachin of Judah was taken prisoner. But, eventually, for some reason the king of Babylon felt like being a nice guy and released king Jehoiachin. He got at least three wonderful gifts during this season of goodwill towards men: release from prison, new clothes and good food the rest of his life. There is another passage that records this incident with a slightly different date, but of course, that is irrelevant because we all know “it is the reason for the season” that counts.
All of these passages address conditions before Jesus Christ was born. There is no doubt that Christmas, which came along much later, borrowed these customs from ancient pagan tradition.
Christmas violates the Law of God
Since Christmas is proven to be pagan (it just wasn’t called “Christmas” by the pagans) and was later “Christianized” by the established church, rather than the opposite (being Christian and then paganized), it has to be offensive to God, for he has told us not to worship our God as the pagans worship their gods:
When the Lord thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? Even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the Lord thy God: for every abomination to the Lord, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods…. What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it (Deut. 12:29-32. See also Deut. 20:18 and 2 Ki. 17:9-16).
There is another closely related biblical account of this false worship in the reforms of King Manasseh after being corrected by God. In 2 Chronicles 33:17 we read, “However, the people still made offerings in the high places, but only to the Lord their God.” So, the people did not want God’s correction. They wanted to continue worshipping in the pagan form. Ezekiel the prophet observed: “… you have not walked in my statutes, neither executed my judgments, but have done after the manners of the heathen that are round about you” (Ezek. 11:12).
God plainly says here (and other places) that he was greatly displeased with His people following the manners (customs) of the heathen (non-Christian) peoples (races). The heathen have many gods and customs and, of course, this plain statement from God’s Word applies to all of them.
Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed my voice, saith the Lord (Jer. 3:13).
And they set them up images and groves in every high hill, and under every green tree: And there they burnt incense in all the high places, as did the heathen whom the Lord carried away before them; and worked wicked things to provoke the Lord to anger (II Kings 17:10-11).
God had previously told His people:
You shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which you shall possess served their gods, on the high mountains, and on the hills, and under every green tree (Deut. 12:2).
You shall destroy their altars, and break down their images, and cut down their groves, and burn their graven images with fire (Deut. 7:5).
Like sheep we have always gone astray, but God expects us to repent (that is correct our ways) before He can bless our nation. “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy” (Pro. 28:13). A shining example of someone who followed this pattern of repentance was King Jehoshaphat. He did not just give lip service to God but actually took action against heathen practices: “And his heart was lifted up in the ways of the Lord: moreover he took away the high places and groves out of Judah” (II Chron. 17:6). What if we had a king in America that would do this?
These trees, groves, hills and high places were not evil in and of themselves, but they were the places and symbols of heathen worship and God told us (Israel – His Christian people) to have nothing to do with these practices. Is it not important what God thinks about these types of celebrations?
Those who defend the obviously pagan Christmas customs, by saying, “it doesn’t mean that to me” only shows how foolish they are, for they are ignoring the fact that God knows what it means and so have all pagans for millennia. We are to do what is pleasing to Him, not what is pleasing to others or to us. Our God warned us not to worship Him in the same way as the heathen worshipped their gods.
Just because there are good deeds connected to the Christmas season is no excuse for violating God’s Law. The verse in the Bible about “peace on earth, goodwill towards men” is a mistranslation. It should be, “peace on earth towards men of goodwill.” The former seems to have an unconditional and universal appeal, but the latter, and correct translation, has peace and goodwill conditioned by people of goodwill. This is only possible in a Christian society. This verse cannot be fulfilled in a multi-racial and multi-cultural mish-mash nation. To unconditionally love everybody is not only foolish, but also un-biblical. The crime rate of America can attest to this. Christmas is definitely not a Christian holiday or Holy Day. It is a destructive day to any civilized society and a violation of the Law of God. “Learn not the way of the heathen…. For the customs of the people are vain” (Jer. 10:2).
Christmas has no Covenant
The main reason Christmas is so popular is that it has no Covenant. For the most part, mainline churches have no Covenant. However, the Bible paints us a different picture. It is a book of covenants (most notably, two). It records that God made an everlasting Covenant with a particular group of people. God’s Covenant made with Abraham was exclusively for his descendants. In stark contrast, the sun god is universal to all people. There are over a hundred sun gods throughout the many cultures of the world. I have listed some of them to show the universal nature of the mythical sun god.
Bel, Baal, or Bul, Tammuz.
Horus, Osiris, Amun, Atum, Ra.
Apollo, Eos, Helios, Hyperion.
Ahau-Kin, Ah Kin, Kinich Ahau.
Aurora, Sol Indiges, Sol Invictus
What do all these sun gods have in common? All the pagan sun gods of the various cultures of the ancient world were “born” on the third day after the winter solstice, our December 25th! In Exodus 20:3, we read, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”
Knowing this, does anyone dare add our Jesus to the long list of sun gods? How can any true Christian do that? This is wrong and God hates it.
Why is Christmas so popular? Why is it celebrated and honored around the world? It is because of the universal nature of Christmas. Christmas is universal because all the sun gods were universal: everyone was included regardless of race, creed, religion, nationality, or (now) sexual preference.
To celebrate Christmas only makes Jesus another mythical sun god. Thus, if Jesus becomes just another sun god then he is not the God of the Bible, but an imposter. In reality, most churches today worship a counterfeit Jesus; one who loves everybody and will “save” anybody. He is a Jesus without a Covenant! He is a universal Jesus!
The Bible hinges upon covenantal doctrine. A Covenant is exclusive to a particular race of people as party with God to the Covenant. It is totally antithetical to a universal principle. Under a Covenant, some are naturally left out of the picture. This is where the “chosen people” concept comes from.
The true Jesus (of the Bible) is linked to the Covenant, for He came to “save His people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21). The Jesus of the scriptures is a part of God’s redemptive work through the everlasting Covenant made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The fake Jesus (of the Dec. 25 sun god fame) has no covenantal founding; therefore, he can save all peoples (races) from their sins.
Therefore, God hates Christmas because it is the invention of evil men to remove the Covenant from our minds. Once the Covenant is removed, it causes us to think universally; in other words: think globally, think multi-cultural, think multi-racial, etc. Thus, the destruction of our nation follows. Christmas is in direct opposition to the establishment of the Kingdom of God on Earth. Christmas is a violation of most of God’s direct commands. In Isaiah 1:14 God says, “Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.”
Christmas has no biblical or historical support of being a Christian holiday. Therefore, we should let the pagans have it back. After all, as they claim, we Christians stole it from them.
Sincere Christians cannot celebrate the Massacre of Christ holiday because:
- It is pagan to the core, in violation of the Law of God.
- It celebrates the massacre of Christ.
- It has no Covenant (it is Catholic or universal).
- It is the birthday of the sun god, not Jesus Christ.
How simple can it be? All of these are anti-scriptural. The result of all this celebration during the Solstice is that we are worshipping the sun god and calling his name Jesus, just as other cultures have done throughout history using their deities. From the evidence shown, it is clearly proven to be pagan with Christian influences, rather than Christian with pagan influences. Therefore, it is unworthy of Christian observance and Jesus Christ should be removed from it. He is not the reason for the season.
Many Protestants continue to observe Christmas as the birth of our Savior in spite of the fact that it is not His birthday. They admit we do not know His exact day of birth and think this justifies choosing any day to observe it. But, of all the days of the year to choose, why would they accept December 25, the same day as all the other sun gods? It is absurd! Furthermore, why would these Xmas keepers give gifts to each other when they should be giving to Jesus Christ? And why would good parents be lying to their innocent children about a jolly old elf named Santa Claus, who’s only design is to get his satanic claws into children’s minds. These people care more about tradition than they do about following God’s Laws.
Many Christians say that Xmas does not mean paganism, secularism, or commercialism to them, and that we should simply remove these things from the Jesus celebration. However, the day is not important – the principle is! We are not to mix the holy with the unholy. God has declared in many places throughout the Bible not to worship Him in the same manner as the heathen worship their pagan gods (See Ex. 20:3, Deut. 12:29-32, 20:18, 2 Ki. 17:9-16, 2 Chron. 33:17). Many people may not be particularly religious, but like it or not, they are making a religious observance by celebrating this wretched holiday that God hates. Xmas is simply a tradition of man and has no biblical support. Let us keep Christ out of Xmas.