Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays or Sol Invictus

It has been a long time since I put fingers to keyboard for anything other than adding recipes to this page.  It has been way too long. So, here goes….

Every year at this time the whole debate over “Happy Holidays” and “Merry Christmas” heats up.  Secularists all want everyone to greet each other with “Happy Holidays” so no one is offended.  Christians get all up in arms and start whining that this is a Christian country, and those who have a problem with “Merry Christmas” should get with the program or get out.

I have news for everyone.  Canada is no longer a Christian country.  Canada is a secularist nation by every definition of the word.  Sure, there are still lots of Christians but, thanks to the multiculturalism brought in by Trudeau the Older, and the proclamations that we must accept all people’s belief systems, Christians are no longer the ones calling the shots.

As can be seen in Rachel Notley’s Christmas card, governments are leaning towards “Happy Holidays” in order to attempt to secure the votes of those of other nationalities and belief system, as well as pandering to their secular supporters.  Though I cannot see “Merry Christmas” becoming illegal, it is simply going to fall by the wayside.

But here’s the good news.  Christians really aren’t losing anything.  Christmas is not a Christian holiday.  It has never been a Christian Holiday.  It is a pagan holiday co-opted by the Holy Roman Catholic Church sometime in the 4th century CE.

The Church was hoping to, by co-opting the Saturnalia Festival, and the celebration of the Birth of the Sun for Helios worshipers, draw Roman pagans to the church.  The ploy worked to some extent, however, many of the pagan practices have stuck to the pagan festival to this day.  Due to the pagan practices being adopted by the Church, while dropping the phoney birthdate of the Christ onto December 25th, the puritans, protestants in Massachusetts outlawed the celebration of Christmas from 1659-1681 a.d..  In fact, it was even illegal to not work on Christmas Day.

Saturnalia, the originating pagan festival, was one fraught in sexual promiscuity, lawlessness, and drunkenness, including rape, murder, and assault.  Roman governments would shut down from, the equivalent date of, December 17th to the 25th.  No one could be arrested for or convicted of a crime during this period.  The festival ended on the 25th of December when each Roman community would select an innocent person to be executed.  The pagans believed they were destroying the forces of darkness by murdering the innocents.

The Lord says,
“Do not start following pagan religious practices.
Do not be in awe of signs that occur in the sky
even though the nations hold them in awe.
For the religion of these people is worthless.
They cut down a tree in the forest,
and a craftsman makes it into an idol with his tools.
He decorates it with overlays of silver and gold.
He uses hammer and nails to fasten it together
so that it will not fall over.
Such idols are like scarecrows in a cucumber field.
They cannot talk.
They must be carried
because they cannot walk.
Do not be afraid of them
because they cannot hurt you.
And they do not have any power to help you.” – Jeremiah 10:2-4 (NET)

Many of the Christmas traditions come from the Saturnalia Festival, and other pagan rites combined into the Christmas Celebration as part of the Church’s desire to bring pagan converts into the fold.

A few of these are:

  • Christmas Trees – The Asheira Cult of Tree Worshippers who brought trees into there houses and decorated and worshipped them.
  • Mistletoe – Origin, Druids. The mistletoe was used to poison their human sacrificial victims.  Mistletoe was brought into the Christian tradition to pacify the druids, while kissing under the mistletoe symbolized the carrying on of the sexual license of Saturnalia.
  • In pre-Christian Rome, enemies, or those hated by the emperor, were compelled to bring gifts to the emperor during Saturnalia.  Eventually this grew into the general populace being compelled to bring gifts.  With the Church co-opting the pagan feast, the people were convinced to give each other gifts.  Eventually the whole St. Nicholas Cult expanded to create the mythical being, Santa Claus.  Of course Santa Claus, in the iteration we know today, was the creation of Haddon Sundblom, a Swedish artist contracted by the Coca Cola Corporation to create a Coke drinking Santa.1

It seems the Church of Rome conscripts a whole lot of things.  First they conscripted the Jewish Jesus.  Then they claimed the Jew, Peter, to be their first pope.  Then, in order to grow their numbers they compromised their beliefs by bending and twisting the teachings of the old testament law, and the teachings of Christ Himself, and creating several holy days that are nothing more than idolatrous pagan worship festivals.  Christmas and Easter are the most prominent of these festivals, since they represent to Christendom the birth and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour.

But let’s get real.  It takes about 5 minutes in the scriptures to know that Jesus was not born anywhere near the 25th of December.  Most scholars, while admitting it is impossible to know the exact day of Jesus’ birth, accept that it was probably in the month of September or early October.  Much historical, Biblical, and modern evidence leads us to this conclusion.

Scripture tells us there were shepherds in the fields watching their flocks at night:

  • Luke 2:8 – Now there were shepherds nearby living out in the filed, keeping guard over their flock at night. (NET)
  • This would only happen between spring and late fall.
  • It would be too cold (Night time temps between 0 and 9 degrees Fahrenheit) in what would be the equivalent of December (Jewish month of Chislev) for shepherds to be out at night with their flocks.  Typically, the flocks would be at home, stabled.

Next there is the fact that Jesus was born 6 months after His cousin John The Baptist:

  • John’s Father, Zacharias was a priest serving in the temple in Jerusalem when he received the news he would have a son.  Luke 1:5 puts this time to be during the course of Abijah, which, calculating backwards would be in June (The Companion Bible , 1974, Appendix 179, p. 200). When he got home Elizabeth conceived – Luke 1:23-24
  • Mary received the news that she was pregnant when Elizabeth was 6 months pregnant – Luke 1:24-36
  • The math is simple.  Zacharias and Elizabeth conceived in late June.  6 months later Mary conceives, with a 9 month gestation period, that puts Jesus’ birth in late September or early October.  Math is math and biology is (or was) biology.
  • This is a more likely time to find shepherds in the fields watching their flocks at night.2

Prior to the 4th century, there is no record of Christians, or the Church celebrating the Birth of Christ.  It is apparent that this celebration was commenced in order to bring the pagan celebrations in some sort of line with Christian Doctrine, in order to do what the Catholic Church has done from time immemorial, pander to pagans.  The current pope is doing the exact same thing with Muslims, and previous popes have done the same thing trying to bring the likes of Wiccans into the church.

For the true Christian or Messianic Jew, everyday is a day to celebrate the birth, death, and resurrection of our Saviour.  We don’t need a holiday.  We don’t need a special liturgy.  We certainly don’t require government acceptance or the blessing of secular masses to celebrate Jesus.  All we need is Him!

In keeping the 10 commandments, or at least in attempting to keep the law, we are commanded to, in the second commandment, not to “make for ourselves a carved image – any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the beneath, or that is in the heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them.  For I, the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hare Me, but showing mercy to thousands to those who love Me and eep My commandments.”  Why, then are we so concerned about the government, immigrants, and secularists wanting to say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas.  One is a greeting that is not based upon the idolatrous worship of trees, mistletoe, Santa Claus, wreaths, and debauchery, while the other is a bastardized form of idolatry, put in place to pander to pagans, while breaking the very laws Christ came to fulfill?

During this holiday season, I hope we can all fulfill the the more Christ like tenets of the season, by showing goodwill to our fellow man, seeking peace on earth, and, yes, celebrating the birth, life, death, and resurrection of our Messiah Jesus Christ.  Let’s not lose sight of the importance of the Christ child, while worrying about what to call a holiday that has never really been about Him.

Happy Holidays to Everyone.

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  1. Simple to Remember – Judaism Online, The Origins of Christmas []
  2. United Church of God – Beyond Today, When Was Jesus Christ Born? []

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