Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Colossians 2:16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:
Christmas the most popular holiday has been the subject of ridicule as well as praise. Groups like the JW’s and other pseudo Christian group have been attacking, telling that Christmas has its origin as a pagan holiday. Books as well as magazines feature Christmas as if Christians are really celebrating a pagan special day. While it is true that the celebration has become so worldly because of the drinking and partying, and the lies about Santa Claus, I would rather celebrate Christmas. I would take into consideration some the pros and the cons in this short message, but before that let me give two illustrations first.
Illustration 1: Our Greatest Need
If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent us an educator;
If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist;
If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist;
If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer;
But our greatest need was forgiveness, so God sent us a Savior. (Source: unknown)
Illustration 2: It Cost …
It cost Mary and Joseph the comforts of home during a long period of exile in Egypt to protect the little babe.
It cost mothers, in and around Bethlehem, the massacre of their babies by the cruel order of Herod.
It cost the shepherds the complacency of their shepherd’s life, with the call to the manger and to tell the good news.
It cost the wise men a long journey and expensive gifts and changed lives.
It cost the early Apostles and the early church persecution and sometimes death.
It cost missionaries of Christ untold suffering and privation to spread the Good News.
It cost Christian martyrs in all ages their lives for Christ’s sake.
More than all this, it cost God the Father His own Son—He sent Him to the earth to save men.
It cost Jesus a life of sacrifice and service, a death cruel and unmatched in history. (Source: unknown)
I. The Birth of Christ was not written in the Bible and nobody knows it, so Christmas is wrong. I fully agree with this but it’s also not wrong to celebrate the birth of Christ even if we don’t know the exact date. The Lord willed that no one will ever know the correct date of His birth but he did not tell us that celebrating his birth is wrong. The WORD was made flesh and dwelt among us (Jn. 1:14). Christ left His glorious place and came here
on earth to save us sinners from our sins and for me it’s worth remembering and celebrating.
II. December 25 was a winter festival, a pagan holiday celebrating the “nativity of the sun”, so when you celebrate on December 25, it’s as if you are celebrating with the pagans. While it is true that in the olden times December 25 was a pagan holiday, when we celebrate Christmas on the same date, we have in mind the birth of Jesus, the star of Bethlehem, the baby in the manger, the shepherds, the angels singing, the wise men. Nobody even think of worshipping the sun now. The SDA accuse us of worshipping on Sundays, because it’s connected with the worship of the sun, they worship on Saturdays, but it has connection with the pagan worship of Saturn. To make a connection with pagan deities is ridiculous because we never have them on mind now.
Illustration: Ancient Origin of Christmas
The climax of the pagan festival Saturnalia came on the 25th of December. It was after the shortest day of the year, the time of the winter solstice, and was celebrated as the “birthday of the unconquered sun.” The drinking and fertility orgies practiced were revolting to Christians.
Sometimes a handsome young soldier was chosen by lot to play the role of King Saturn, the god. He was dressed to fit the part and given an honor guard. He was told, “Now you are a god! You can live like a god!”
In A.D. 303 the lot fell to a young Christian soldier named Dasius. He refused to participate. He refused even to jest, to imply that a heathen god could make any demands on him. His last days would not be spent in debauchery. His comrades pleaded with him but to no avail. He was beheaded by the group.
Later, Christians chose the 25th of December to honor Jesus’ birth. No longer would they celebrate the pagan birthday of “the unconquered sun.” Henceforth they celebrated “the birthday of the unconquered Son.”
Encyclopaedia of 15,000 Illustrations: Signs of the Times.
III. The word Christmas indicates a mixture of Christian and pagan word. The name of Christ and the Catholic “Mass”, put together in one word so as non-Catholics we should not celebrate Christmas. Personally I do not agree with the repetitious prayers, the prayers for the dead, the transubstantiation rites etc. of the Catholics but when I think about Christmas, I’m not thinking about the mass. In my mind it is the coming of Christ, and I want to celebrate it to honor Him, to thank Him, to praise Him, and to worship Him. The Christmas carols which when I hear brings joy to my heart has nothing to do with the mass. The family reunion, the greetings, the smiles, the reconciliation, the giving of gifts is something no other holidays can have an impact to people. If Catholics celebrate it with their mass, so be it, we non-Catholics will celebrate it with our worship service.
I read that more people are going to church during Christmas than any other time of the year. The reason is, people are more forgiving, more understanding, easier to talk to and easier to invite to go to church. I experienced being greeted by people from other religious group, shaking my hands, smiling, and telling me Merry Christmas. They may not know a lot about Christianity but what they know is Christmas time is the birth of Christ and they share the joy and happiness we have.
IV. They say that Christmas tree and other Christmas decorations is a form of idolatry. They cite Jeremiah 10:3-4 to justify their reasoning. We don’t have Christmas tree in our house just to avoid being criticized by other believers and be a stumbling block. The truth is:
A. Jeremiah speaks of idol making that’s why it mentioned hammer and as well as silver and gold. (Ps. 115: 4-8)
B. During Jeremiah’s time, there was no Christmas, and there was no Christmas tree.
C. It is not a prophetic verse, and as far as I know even the pagan people do not worship a literal tree. What they worship is their “god of the harvest”.
D. If we decorate our house with Christmas tree, it’s just to beautify and to make the holiday season more colourful. I don’t see any wrong with that. Who would worship a Christmas tree now?
E. If we express our joy that Christ came into the world to save sinners thru decorating our house because friends and relatives are coming, I find no fault in this.
F. The Bible does not say making Christmas tree is a sin.
G. I love to see Christmas lights in various colours flashing, colourful mistletoes and other things that would make this holiday season worth remembering because Christ became man and that’s one of the best thing or event that happened in the world since God created the world.
V. Christmas celebration is worldly so let’s not join the world in doing carnal things. I would agree that due to lots of drinking, excessive revelry, dancing, carousing, too much commercialism, as well as lies about Sta. Claus, Christmas is corrupted. But it doesn’t mean that because some people are doing it, we would stop remembering the coming of our Saviour. Lots of people are getting drunk during Sundays than people going to church to attend worship service. It’s a proven fact yet we still continue going to church despite of this. Christmas is a time to tell our children or grandchildren the birth of our Saviour and if other people make Christmas a day of doing fleshly things, then we set an example of celebrating it decently and spiritually.
Christmas time is a time for remembering the birth of our beloved Saviour. We don’t know exactly when he was born but what is important is it is never wrong to celebrate it. Christmas day had been abused and people are mocking and celebrating it without restraint and without even the thought about Christ. For me it’s a great sin but we as Bible believing Christians should not give up setting an example on how to celebrate it. For those who really don’t believe in celebrating the birth of the Lord, I would remind you of God’s word in Col 2:16, you must not judge or condemn those who celebrate it. Celebrating or not celebrating Christmas will not make you a better Christian.