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Christmas vs. Christ
by Tommy Hagewood

Christmas vs. Christ

This time of the year is always marred with sinful debauchery and crass materialism. Someone once remarked that during the holiday period people spend money they don't have to give unneeded or unwanted gifts to people they may not even like. Some have suggested that the cure for such holiday ills and excesses is to put Christ back into Christmas.

The truth is Christ never was in Christmas. Christmas is a religious holy day that has been set aside by false religion-the Roman Catholic Church. If you check history books you will find that there was no general consensus about the date for Jesus' birthday until about the fifth century A.D. Historians tell us that Dec. 25th originally was observed by the pagans in honor of their sun god in the time of the winter solstice. The Catholic Church merely changed it to a celebration of the birth of Christ.

The scriptures nowhere indicate the date of Jesus' birth. Throughout history various dates have been celebrated. About the only thing we can know for sure is that Jesus was not born on Dec. 25. Luke 2:8 informs us that when He was born shepherds were living out in the fields. This would have been sometime between March and November. Dec. 25 would have been in the middle of their rainy season and thus a time when shepherds were not living in the fields.

There are also false conclusions regarding the birth of Jesus. The Bible does not say how many wise men there were. Matt. 2:11 tells us that they went into the house and saw the young Child which would have occurred some months after the actual birth. Yet every nativity scene I have ever seen shows three wise men along with the shepherds in the stable where Jesus was born.

Emotionalism, as well as false teaching and assumptions abound at this time of year. I have an article before me concerning the candy cane. It says that it is one of the oldest symbols of Christmas. The crook represents shepherd's crook, the wide red stripe represents Christ's sacrifice, the narrow red stripe our sacrifices and the white stripe represents purity. The last paragraph states: "As you eat your candy cane, you might want to break it (as Christ's body was broken for you) and share it with a friend, thus sharing in the sweetness of the true meaning of Christmas" What sentimental silliness, presumption and blasphemy!

We cannot put Christ back in Christmas because He was never in it! Jesus warns us against doing anything in religion contrary to His revealed will (Col. 3:17; 2 John 9; Gal. 1:6-9). We are to walk by faith-not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7). Observing one unauthorized holy day constitutes following a perverted gospel (Gal. 4:10-11). We all observe Christmas as a national holiday but no one should observe it as a religious holy day.

We need to observe the memorials Jesus commands of His followers. When one is baptized to be saved he or she goes through a likeness of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus (Rom. 6:3 -5). Weekly observance of the Lord's supper commemorates the death of Jesus (Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 11:23-26). The Lord's Day is set aside as a day of worship (Rev. 1:10; Matt. 28:1ff; Acts 20:7). It is truly a shame that people usually choose man-made religion over the will of God for their lives.

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