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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Should we celebrate Christmas?

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roadsign
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Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776


 Re:

Quote:
The choice of 25th December was the same kind of expedient. It provided an alternate 'celebration' so that the Christians were not drawn back into their pagan cultures. Their perceived choice was reject it or replace it. As some of you will know I am not afraid of 'replacement theology'!


Now this is a good point, though I suspect it did not originate with the Holy Spirit. It seems like an attempt to mix two kingdoms - God's and man's.

As I said earlier, Christmas is HERE, and we must respond to it in some way. To say that we want nothing to do with it would mean putting a paper bag on our head so that we can't see all the pretty lights and decorations. We can't pretend it doesn't exist, and we can't control what others do with Christmas. But we can do something about our own sinful tendencies to go after fleshly gratifications. We can learn to resist the temptations, and be as Christ would want us to be.

Some other thoughts: Jesus took part in cultural or religious activites even though he didn't necessarily support them. He taught in the temple (which was very anti-Christ in it's philosophy). He went to a wedding and even changed huge pots of water into huge pots of wine (probably for the benefit of all who insist on abstinence).

If Jesus were to walk in our culture today, he'd probably join the odd Christmas Eve service. And we have the Pope to thank for making Dec. 25 the official day to celebrate Christ's Birthday .......... Oops, did I say something I shouldn't have?

Diane


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Diane

 2005/12/12 14:50Profile
Warrior4Jah
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Joined: 2005/7/5
Posts: 382
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 Re:

I'm wondering, do some of you people also not light fireworks? Do some of you also not wear crosses for example?

To be honest I see no wrong in celebrating Jesus birthday. There is nothing in scripture that forbids us to do that. Was it common for people in the New Testament to celebrate their birthday? If it was not, shouldn't we then stop doing that too? (especially if we read that Harod celebrated his birthday)

Where does one draw the line?


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Jonathan Veldhuis

 2005/12/12 16:06Profile
Agent001
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Joined: 2003/9/30
Posts: 386
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

 Re:

Diane ([b]roadsign[/b]):

Quote:
As I said earlier, Christmas is HERE, and we must respond to it in some way. To say that we want nothing to do with it would mean putting a paper bag on our head so that we can't see all the pretty lights and decorations. We can't pretend it doesn't exist, and we can't control what others do with Christmas. But we can do something about our own sinful tendencies to go after fleshly gratifications. We can learn to resist the temptations, and be as Christ would want us to be.

I agree we have to [b]respond[/b] in some way, although Christians do respond in [i]different[/i] ways. Some chose to seize the opportunity to emphasise the Lord's birth - God's gift of his son to the world - to counter the consumerism and commercialism in the world.

Some chose to refrain from associating with Christian celebrations completely. We remember the Lord's incarnation, death, and resurrection every time we partake of the holy communion, not just once a year.

I think this is a situation where we can apply these verses:

[i]One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord; and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it.[/i] (Romans 14:5-6).


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Sam

 2005/12/12 16:46Profile
CyberCarbon
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Joined: 2005/12/16
Posts: 122


 Absolutely Yes

Christmas is a contraction for The Christ Mass, as for being a pagan holiday, as Christians do we run from days that happen to have evil or bad things happen on them? I cannot believe how the JWs have convinced some Christians they are correct in not celebrating Christmas, A cult is teaching us. I thought we are to be salt and light and Christmas is a Christian Holiday that Jesus Christ inspired. I am trouble that some of us are so easily deceived into surrendering it back to the heathens. Christmas is a huge chance to reach the lost. We have a unique chance to be more Christ like after all He has the greatest and most important gift anyone can receive.
I hope there are not any Christians saying "Happy Holidays" how PC can we get? After all Holidays are another contraction for HOLY Days you just take out the Why and replace it with a selfish, "I" there must be a spiritual message somewhere maybe someone else can use it. Any way that is my two cents, Merry Christmas


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David Michael Paul

 2005/12/17 1:18Profile
crsschk
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Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
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 Re: Absolutely Yes

Quote:
After all Holidays are another contraction for HOLY Days you just take out the Why and replace it with a selfish, "I" there must be a spiritual message somewhere maybe someone else can use it. Any way that is my two cents, Merry Christmas



"I" think there is a spiritual message right within your quote. Merry Christmas to you to.

Something that just jumped up on the radar:

"And it was told king David, saying, The LORD hath blessed the house of Obededom, and all that pertaineth unto him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obededom into the city of David with gladness. And it was so, that when they that bare the ark of the LORD had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings. And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.

And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal Saul's daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart." 2Sa 6:12-16


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Mike Balog

 2005/12/17 7:40Profile
roadsign
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Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776


 Re:

Quote:
Christmas is a Christian Holiday that Jesus Christ inspired.


I think the earlier posts clearly expose the fallacy of this statement. It is NOT insprired by Christ, but by a desire to combine the kingdom of God with the kingdom of the world. That should be quite obvious when we look at our practises surrounding this holiday season.
Quote:
I am trouble that some of us are so easily deceived into surrendering it back to the heathens

Jesus said: Give to Casaer what is Casaer's and to God what is God's. We are not called to claim Christmas for ourselves, just because in the third century someone did that. So, let the pagans call the TREE whatever they want, a holiday tree, a yule tree. That is NOT our affair. Christmas trees have nothing to do with the Kingdom of God.

"Do not love the world, or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world - the cravings of sinful man, the lust of the eye..... come not from the Father but from the WORLD." 1 Jn. 2:15

In the thread about church music, I shared my comments about our tendency to turn musuc into our idol. Again here I post my diagnostic questions, only substitue the word 'Christmas' for 'music'. Is Christmas an idol to us? That is a personal issue.

1. Do I need a Christmas to make me FEEL like I am worshipping God?

2. Can I get along WITHOUT it?

3. Do I believe that the kind of Christmas that I like must be what God likes too (making God into my own image)

4. Am I so wrapped up in my Christmas that I fail to empathize with others around them - ie I have no clue what is going on in their lives, and I really don't care?

5. Do I regard my Christmas involvement as my sacrifice to God, when really it is merely a way to satisfy my senses?

6. Do I control others in order to get what I want, and fail to appreciate or respect those who may have different convictions?

7. Is what's happening at Christmas in my church (or home) sacred to me. (ie more importance than God)

8. If God calls you to surrender Christmas, would you?


Idolatry is a serious problem - a violation of the first two commandments in the OT and the greatest commandment in the NT. We are all prone to it, so, it is worth allowing God to examine our hearts regarding Christmas. It is in our minds where idols are forged, and it is there where we must deal with it.

IRONMAN said it well:
Quote:
let each of us seek the Lord on what we ought to do and do that. if the Lord is indeed tugging at you to leave this whole celebration alone, then leave it alone. ... if the Lord calls for us to repent from this then let us fall on our faces and repent, repent and repent some more.AMEN.


Thank you, Ironman.
Diane


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Diane

 2005/12/17 10:12Profile
Compton
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Joined: 2005/2/24
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 Re:

Regarding this issue, Agent's post of this verse seems to hit the nail on the head.

Quote:
One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord; and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it. (Romans 14:5-6).



I think we should respect the Godly convictions of those Christians who cannot in faith or conscience observe Christmas, while also respecting those Christians who are eager to observe Christmas as a public and private remembrance of Christ's birth.


MC


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Mike Compton

 2005/12/17 15:56Profile
Christisking
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Joined: 2005/7/20
Posts: 672
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 Re:

MC,

Aren't these verses talking about sabbath days that were ordained by God and not about using pagan holidays to worship God? I think using pagan festivals to worship God is expressively forbidden. If I am wrong please correct me.

Although, the pagan origins of Christmas is enough reason not to celebrate, I think it is not the major reason. I'll post me opinions on the major reason on why Christians should not celebrate Christmas in a second post.


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Patrick Ersig

 2005/12/17 16:38Profile
Christisking
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Joined: 2005/7/20
Posts: 672
Los Angeles, California

 Re:

I am interested in what people think and hope that some will try to answer some of the questions posed in this post - first of all, do you think that we should take the name of Christ out of Christmas altogether, or should we allow His name to be associated with the abomination we now call Christmas? It is kind of a tricky question. Haven't christians ruined this celebration to the Birth of Christ? Isn't having the name of Jesus associated with this holiday a much bigger offense to Jesus than taking it out? Do you disagree that the celebration of Christmas is an abomination to Jesus and puts Him to open shame in front of the whole world.

"I saw a sign the other day that said in reference to this season, "Love, joy and peace are in the air." Bzzzt. Wrong answer. Materialism, gluttony, selfishness, suicide, greed, pride, self-righteousness, family idolatry, hypocrisy with strangers and family members and all the like are in the air, in abundance. The demonic power of "Christ" mas includes a seduction of the flesh which is warm, fuzzy and intoxicating. It strokes every sense of the flesh with smells, sights, sounds, and a "spirit" in the air - literally. Or it totally depresses them. Suicide is higher this time of year than any other time. "No one even cares for me at "Christ" mas time," is a common thought. During this time of year, "Christian" people are supposed to be glad that at least once a year people's attention is on Jesus. The facts are, people are probably more concentrated on themselves during this time than any other time. References to Jesus, the nativity, the virgin birth and singing all these beautiful songs about Him, seems to only allow people to feel more justified in their sin and more callused to those truths and words later. It blinds and hypnotizes them.

Many people feel justified or appease their conscience by putting a manger scene in front of their tree or donating food or money to the Salvation Army; going caroling or going to a "Christ" mas Eve service. Some people are sincere about wanting to celebrate Jesus' birthday and believe that others can be reached with the gospel during this time of year. But for the one person who might come to know Jesus as a result of something he heard during this season, there will be thousands of others who will be further and further away from knowing who Jesus really is and what that means for their lives.

The fruit shows itself to be very related to roots. Hypocrisy and shallowness of heart produces hypocrisy and shallowness of heart. Take exchanging gifts for example. Is it really gift giving or is it possession exchanging? If someone gives something, how often would there be a person who honestly doesn't want something back. Very rarely. Greed and self-centeredness are bred into children. This holiday does not draw people to an exalted Christ. It mocks Him and pulls people away from Him. Just as the soldiers mocked Jesus when they crucified Him. They put a robe on Him, a crown of thorns on His head and said, "Behold the King of the Jews." Today, scripture says, that rebellious sin crucifies Him again. And in the middle of rebellious sin, people sing, "Silent night, HOLY night." In reality, it's children of Satan singing songs about Jesus. God sees it as blasphemy because their hearts are far from Him. The Father is not pleased; He is angry. And we will be too if we see His Son and the name of His Son the way He does. One of the things most important to Him to say to His People when He first revealed Himself on Mt. Sinai was, "DO NOT use my name in vain!!!" Wouldn't you say that a choir or a group of intoxicated "carolers" singing joyously about "baby Jesus" and the "HOLY night" to a group of folks that also have little or no intention of obeying Jesus in their personal lives - wouldn't THAT qualify as using His name in vain, the most grotesque form of hypocrisy?"

Wouldn't it better if the name of Christ was completely disassociated with Christmas? If the birth of Christ was celebrated by people around the world with orgies would you want Jesus' name to be associated with it or anything to do with it? Just because materialism and greed is so culturally ingrained into the mind of so many doesn't mean that celebrating the birth of Jesus this way is any less of an abomination then celebrating His birth with orgies. Again - wouldn't it better if the name of Christ was completely disassociated with Christmas? Just some food for thought.


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Patrick Ersig

 2005/12/17 16:41Profile
Compton
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Joined: 2005/2/24
Posts: 2732


 Re:

Christisking,

:-) The way you described Christmas makes me not want to observe it either.

Quote:
It strokes every sense of the flesh with smells, sights, sounds, and a "spirit" in the air - literally.



Quote:
Wouldn't you say that a choir or a group of intoxicated "carolers" singing joyously about "baby Jesus" ...the most grotesque form of hypocrisy?"


Quote:
Or it totally depresses them. Suicide is higher this time of year than any other time.


Quote:
If the birth of Christ was celebrated by people around the world with orgies would you want Jesus' name to be associated with it or anything to do with it?



Since you asked for some thinking food let me suggest you apply this approach to other things Christians do. You will find enough fleshly examples of bad worship, bad preaching, bad marriages, and bad churches to consider never participating in these things because of the shameful behavior of others.

Honestly I think this issue is just another example of sectarianism that Christians seem to find purpose in. We become clannish over the most obtuse concerns. If we invent enough rules and regulations we'll eventually make backsliders and hypocrites out of all of us.

MC




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Mike Compton

 2005/12/17 18:42Profile





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