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  • The birth of Christ

    The birth of Christ wouldn't that have been at some point within the three Jewish Festival's from April to Oct and not in the month Dec. So why was this month given to be the month in which the baby Jesus was born and not these earlier ones by the early church. Plus shepherds only watched their flocks at night from April-early November.
    Knowing that December 25th because it was integrated with pagan celebrations around the winter solstice. Just would like to know what were they thinking!

    Merry Christmas

  • #2
    Re: The birth of Christ

    I have no idea. But if it were me, and I saw a chance to snatch a day the Lord has created back from the enemy, I would probably take it! Personally, I am not a big holiday person regardless of the day. They are pretty much all the same to me. But, I would much rather the world celebrate Christmas (the representative birthday of Jesus) on Dec. 25 than celebrate the winter solstice along with all the pagan junk.
    Matt 9:13
    13 "But go and learn what this means: ' I DESIRE COMPASSION,AND NOT SACRIFICE,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
    NASU

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    • #3
      Re: The birth of Christ

      Not that the OP is "up in arms" about the date, but I never understand why people get that way, or why anyone cares that it shares the same date as a pagan festival.

      But more to the point, Dec 25 was chosen for, what I believe to be, a very good reason. Dec 25 (or at least the solstice proper, whether it falls on the 25th or 21st or whatever) is the shortest day of the year. Or, more theologically significant, it's the longest night of the year; it's the day when the earth experiences the greatest amount of darkness. And on the day when the earth experiences the greatest amount of darkness, we celebrate the fact that God, Who is Light, came into the world and brought Light and Life.

      It's also noteworthy to add that both the Nativity (aka Christmas) and Theophany (which is Greek for "the revelation of God", and is celebrated 13 days later commemorating Christ's baptism, when the Trinity was first revealed) were both celebrated as the same event, and that was on Dec 25, and it was just called "Theophany". Both concepts (the Incarnation, which is what Christmas is ACTUALLY celebrating, not the historic day of His birth - it's the reality of what His birth IS; and Theophany) were included in that one Feast, since in both God is being revealed. Through the Incarnation we come to know God in the Flesh; God has appeared to man as a fellow Man and we are able to know Him. It was only centuries later that those two concepts were separated. That is where we get the 12 days of Christmas - Christmas through Jan 5 are 12 days. The next day is the Feast of Theophany (I believe that the Catholic/Protestant churches refer to it as "Epiphany", but that might be a different one altogether).

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      • #4
        Re: The birth of Christ

        Thanks to the OP for not being up in arms about the day.

        I fully agree that the day had to be in the mentioned months, and 25 December is the day after the shortest day [North] that was a pagan festival.

        I also see the significance of the Nativity scene as a testimony of the birth of Christ, but I regret that it is held on a pagan day. What I really do not like is that Christians insist that this IS the day Christ was born, and this WAS NOT a pagan festival. I do not appreciate the presence of pagan or non-Christian symbols such as a tree or a silly old man in a red suit symbolising nonsense on the day.

        My family do not regard the day, but we respect those that do.

        God bless!
        Anton
        השייך לאלוהים דרך ישו

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        • #5
          Re: The birth of Christ

          Originally posted by Psalms Fan View Post
          Not that the OP is "up in arms" about the date, but I never understand why people get that way, or why anyone cares that it shares the same date as a pagan festival.

          But more to the point, Dec 25 was chosen for, what I believe to be, a very good reason. Dec 25 (or at least the solstice proper, whether it falls on the 25th or 21st or whatever) is the shortest day of the year. Or, more theologically significant, it's the longest night of the year; it's the day when the earth experiences the greatest amount of darkness. And on the day when the earth experiences the greatest amount of darkness, we celebrate the fact that God, Who is Light, came into the world and brought Light and Life.

          It's also noteworthy to add that both the Nativity (aka Christmas) and Theophany (which is Greek for "the revelation of God", and is celebrated 13 days later commemorating Christ's baptism, when the Trinity was first revealed) were both celebrated as the same event, and that was on Dec 25, and it was just called "Theophany". Both concepts (the Incarnation, which is what Christmas is ACTUALLY celebrating, not the historic day of His birth - it's the reality of what His birth IS; and Theophany) were included in that one Feast, since in both God is being revealed. Through the Incarnation we come to know God in the Flesh; God has appeared to man as a fellow Man and we are able to know Him. It was only centuries later that those two concepts were separated. That is where we get the 12 days of Christmas - Christmas through Jan 5 are 12 days. The next day is the Feast of Theophany (I believe that the Catholic/Protestant churches refer to it as "Epiphany", but that might be a different one altogether).
          Just to let you know that I'm not 'up in arms' about the date, just thought about the reasons why it seem to have changed. You give some insight to some possiblities for the change. Although I can't seem to understand if one related Dec.25 as the 'incarnation' (God coming in the flesh as man) and not relate that to Jesus birthday which has to be in the three festivals time frame. I would also not think that Jesus baptism would relate to the fall month of Dec. the water would be to cold for baptism unless the river Jordon became a heated pool

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          • #6
            Re: The birth of Christ

            First, I'm sorry if I made it out to be saying that I thought you were "up in arms" about things. That was certainly not my intent, and I could probably have found much better way to put my thoughts to words.

            The only two Feasts, that I'm aware of, whose dates were deliberately chosen to reflect when they actually took place are Pascha (and the events of Holy Week) and Pentacost. Other dates, such as the ones for Nativity and Theophany (as well as the Transfiguration, Christ's Circumcision, etc) were chosen for reasons other than chronological accuracy (and I don't know the reason for all of them).

            Nativity/Theophany, as I said, was chosen because God revealed Himself to us when we were in darkness, and the two Feasts of God revealing Himself approximately line up with the period of time in the year when we experience the most darkness.

            When it comes to Christmas Trees, etc, I'm in the camp that believes that if something that was historically non-christian can be "baptized" and given Christian significance, then I'm all for it. A Christmas Tree is "alive" while everything else during that time of year is "dead"; we put lights on it because while we're in a period of time of darkness, God brought Light into the world. Similarly, an egg during the Paschal season represents new life (although it had also been associated with pagan rites). Why should we let Satan steal all the good stuff in this world? After all, God created all these things first. Satan's the one doing the copyright infringement! Although those who disagree with me on that do so for reasons, and I'm not about to try to argue to convince anyone of my point of view.

            Santa Clause, on the other hand, I'm not too keen on. I'm perfectly fine with remembering St Nicholas and distancing his remembrance from Christ's Nativity. He was, after all, a real, historical figure who did real, good things in the world (along with his loss of temper). And as a bishop, he did have a beard (and when he got old it turned gray/white, as happens to most people), and during the Christmas season, his robes were red (as we still do today). But I'm not big on "magic" and think the whole "Santa Clause" thing is wholly unnecessary and borderline spiritually hazardous (especially to a kid who is trying to get a grasp on fantasy vs reality, while we tell him/her that something that is fantasy is actually reality, as if we "owe" it to their childhood or something).

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            • #7
              Re: The birth of Christ

              Christmas is wholly and purely an invention of the RCC. (CHRIST MAS = Mass of Christ)

              There is no command or example of (not even so much as a hint), in scripture, that the early church made any special recognition of Christs birth.

              The only observance that was observed and perpetually kept was the Lords Supper (weekly) which recognized Christ death.

              The reason Christmas didn't get dropped, esp through the reformation years, IMO, is because it is just too much fun. After all don't we rail against practically every thing else the RCC does?

              Although Matthew and Luke give fairly strong accounts of the birth of Christ, there are a lot of vague details that we have speculated in to arrive at the modern legend of Christmas. Example... 3 wise men?

              We have an account of scripture of Jesus tossing the money changers on their ears for making the house of God into a "den of robbers". I wonder how He feels about us taking His name and attaching it to this highly commercial event that Christmas has become?

              all the best...

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              • #8
                Re: The birth of Christ

                Without research, I don't really know the reasons behind the choosing of Dec.25.
                I do know this, however: It was absolutely essential that the true Messiah fulfill the prophecies regarding him. Those feasts of the Lord were exactly that, prophetic. For Jesus to have been the Messiah, He HAD to have been born according to prophecy. If His birth did not fulfill the prophecies, then He was not the Messiah.
                The feasts prophecied His birth to be the 15th day of Tishri, or, the first day of the feast of Tabernacles, the time when God would tabernacle with man. His circumcision would take place on Simchat Torah, the eighth day.
                I have no problem however with people celebrating His birth on the 25th, simply because the whole world recognizes that it is Jesus' birthday that is being celebrated on that day, regardless of pagan influence or origin.
                Decorating trees with the representations of the testicles of Tammuz, and little wizards in funny red suits are unquestionably pagan, and telling children lies about them, to be later discovered as a lie (and which tends to make one a liar and destroys trust and respect) is a very questionable practice in my view. Yet, It is widely known that 'Jesus is the reason for the season', and there are some who come to Christ through it.

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