Do you celebrate Christmas? Is Christmas really something that Christians should observe?
Did the early Colonist's observe or celebrate Christmas?
There are many Christians each year that celebrate Christmas. Most parents know that there is really not a Santa Claus that brings presents and stick them under a tree, instead they raise their children up believing this to be true. Why would a Christian parent tell lies to their kids? Most people that I talk to always say: well, it is for the kids to have fun and to receive gifts each year. But, are we suppose to tell lies to our kids? Why don't Pastors educate their flock (congregation) about the real truth of Christmas?
The following is from the: Watchman Willie Martin Archive
CHRISTMAS IN AMERICA
Although few 20th‑Century American Christians seem to see any significance in it, it is true the Christian founders of America not only did NOT celebrate the December 25th 'Holiday,' but attempted to prevent its observance by others in the Colonies.
Following are two reproductions of two newspaper clippings which verify the Christian Colonists' action; articles which should make ever modern Christian want to know WHY Early American Christians did NOT celebrate 'Christmas!'
"IT'S A FACT! Christmas was not established as a legal holiday throughout the U.S. until late in the 19th century. In 1659 the Puritan colony in Massachusetts passed a law that anyone 'found observing any such day as Christmas or the like, either by forbearing labor, feasting or in any other way, shall be fined five shillings.' Many early Americans who refused to work on Christmas either went to jail or paid fines." (Arizona Currents December, 1968, page 5)
CHRISTMAS WAS BANNED! Boston (AP) ‑‑
"Christmas was once banned in Boston. The Puritans forbade the celebration of Christmas because it was a 'pagan feast.' Episcopalians were the first in Boston to observe the holiday. They were followed by increasing numbers of young people who raised 18th century eyebrows with 'frolics, a reveling feast and ball.' But it wasn't until 1856 that the legislature ‑ recognizing a losing battle when it saw it ‑ gave in and made Christmas a legal holiday." (The Phoenix Gazette, December 22, 1967)
Please read all of this short presentation. The next few pages will illustrate "modern" Christmas; the rest examines the "ancient" festival. You may be somewhat shocked, but we pray it will help you understand what is happening to our beloved America.
"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful." (Psalm 1:1)
IS CHRISTMAS CHRISTIAN?
From the preceding, and from a realistic observation of the strange "going' on" during what is called "the Christmas Season," or "the Holidays," it is obvious that MOST of what passes for "Christmas" is decidedly NOT Christian. But how can this be, if indeed the day itself to which all this splendid and costly preparation leads is Biblical or of Christ?
The Bible teaches us that "the carnal [wordly] mind is enmity against God" (Romans 8:7), and that the "world," i.e., people who love the world rather than God, actually hate Christ and Christians, as we read: "Ye shall be hated of all nations for My Name's sake" (Matthew 24:9; 10:22; Mark 13:13; and Luke 21:17), and "because ye [disciples] are not of the world [order], but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you." (John 15:19) John wrote to the Christians not to be surprised at being hated, "Marvel not, my brethren if the world hate you." (1 John 3:13)
So that we should understand that that hatred was directed primarily at Jesus Christ, He told His Disciples, "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated Me before it hated you." (John 15:18)
Yet those who pay no attention to Christ or His Word all of the rest of the year, those who fit the description of "the world," enter into the activities and ritual of "Christmas" with a frenzy that borders on a passion!
How can this be so? How can the unbelievers be so stirred at this one time of the year to venerate a day proclaimed as the "very birthday" of Jesus Christ, when they pay no attention to Him the rest of the year?
WORSHIP OF A PAGAN GOD!
BIRTH OF CHRIST NOT CELEBRATED UNTIL 5th CENTURY
December 18, 1968, Phoenix Gazette:
"Tempe ‑ The Christmas world did not commemorate the birth of Christ until the 5th Century, according to Dr. Arnold Tilden, professor of history at Arizona State University. Christians considered it to be a pagan practice to celebrate birthdays, unless they occurred on the days on which a person was born to eternal life ‑ the day of martyrdom,' he observed. 'Actually, it was the death‑day which was celebrated, and most of the Saints' days on the calendar mark the day on which they died.' Over the years. Tilden has researched the history of Christmas customs, passing along his observations to students at this time of the year.
'Actually, Christmas is the youngest of the Church holidays, although it has outstripped all others in importance,' he commented. The Western church was eminently practical, however. When it encountered pagan practices, it either stamped them out or adapted the festival rites to the Christian faith. In Germany, the church was successful in stamping out the eating of horse flesh because of its sacramental significance to pagans, while in Italy, it adopted the statues portraying Isis and the god‑ child Horus, merely renaming them Mary and Jesus. This same system of assimilation, the ASU historian explained, gave rise to Christmas as we know it...
Wherever the Christians went, they discovered that the latter half of December was the high season for festivals. It was the time of the winter solstice, when the days began to lengthen: the time when the Sun‑God turned in his path and started back to his people: it was Saturnalia, a time for licentiousness, revelry, drunkenness and sensual pleasures. The Romans marked the day by feasting friends. There was a general exchange of presents (mostly wax dolls or tapers). Roman shops at this time resembled our own stores during the Christmas season. The Church was anxious to distract the attention of its new converts from these heathen feast days and assimilated them, clothing them in a new and Christian significance.
'The date of the actual introduction of Christmas is disputed,' Tilden states. 'However, in 354 A.D., Latins may have transferred the human birth of Christ to Dec. 25. Certainly, by 400 A.D. Christmas, as a Christian festival, was established in the West and gained some ground in the East. Attempts by the church to wipe out the Manichean heresy in the first half of the fifth century may have hastened the official adoption of the date.'
The Manicheans, he explained, believed God would not demean Himself to become man, but only took the form of man. Therefore, the apparent life and death of Christ were mere delusions. This belief was directly antagonistic to accepted teachings, and in the hope of destroying the creed, the church instituted Christmas, celebrating the actual, human birth of Christ. 'So Christmas entered the official list of holy days, taking on the features of the various nations among whom it was introduced, and adopting certain pagan rites from the religions which it supplanted,' said Tilden.
The Romans gave it the Latin name 'Dies Natalis' (birthday of God); The Italians 'Natale;' the Spanish 'Nadal;' and the French 'Noel.' The Germans retained their old heathen designation of 'Weihnachten,' while in Holland and England, it was referred to as 'the Mass of Christ,' or as we say 'Christ's Mass' (Christmas)."
Almost all Bible scholars who have made attempts to ascertain the actual birth day of Jesus, have admitted failure to find the "exact" date, but all have estimated it to be no earlier than September 20th nor later than November 6th on our present calendar.
This, coupled with the available evidence that neither the first century Christians, nor those of early America, observed any "birthday of Jesus," leads one to contemplate in wonder. Which is ‑‑ in spite of all evidence AGAINST December 25th being at or even near the "birthday" of Jesus, and in spite of the total lack of Scriptural admonition to Christians to observe any day at all in commemoration of Jesus' birth, the Churches, almost without exception, APPROVE, AND PARTICIPATE IN, ALMOST ALL OF THE RITUALS BY WHICH NON‑CHRISTIANS CELEBRATE "CHRISTMAS!"
THE WINTER FESTIVAL
Christmas ‑ December 25 ‑ is the day designated on our calendars as the day of Christ's birth. But is this really the day upon which Christ was born? Are today's customs at this season of the year of Christian origin? Or is Christmas another result of a mixture between paganism and Christianity?
A look at the word "Christmas" indicates that it is a mixture. Though it includes the name of Christ, it also mentions the "mass." Now the mass ‑ with its rituals, elaborate ceremony, pagan prayers for the dead, transubstantiation rites, etc. is most assuredly a continuation of paganism. Considering then that the name of these pagan rites, the Mass, is connected with the name of Christ in the word "Christ‑mas," we immediately see an attempt to merge two conflicting system together! Actually, to attach the name of Christ with the word "Mass," a pagan and heathenistic ritual, is but to pollute the Holy name of our God! And God says:
"Pollute ye my holy name no more!" (Ezekiel 20:39)
The word "Christmas" is not found anywhere in the scriptures of course, and ‑ as we shall see ‑ December 25 is definitely not the date on which Christ was born. It is evident that our saviour was not born during the middle of winter, for at that time of His birth, the shepherds were living out in the fields with their flocks. As the scriptures say:
"There were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night." (Luke 2:8)
As is well known, the shepherds in Palestine did not "abide in the fields" during the winter season. The shepherds always bring their flocks in from the mountain slopes and fields not later than the fifteenth of October!
It is quite evident then that Christ was not actually born in the middle of the winter season. But, on the other hand, do the scriptures tell us what season of the year he was born? Yes, the scriptures indicate that He was born in the FALL of the year. For example, our Lord's public ministry lasted for three and a half years. (Daniel 9:27 etc.) His ministry came to an end at the time of the passover (John 18:39), which was in the spring of the year. And so three and a half years before this would mark the beginning of His ministry in the FALL of the year. Now when Jesus began His ministry, He was about thirty years of age. (Luke 3:23) This was the recognized age for a priest before he could become an official minister under the Old Testament. (Numbers 4:3) Therefore, since Christ began His ministry at the age of about 30 ‑ and since this was in the fall season of the year ‑ then thirty years BEFORE this would mark His birth as being in the early FALL, not December 25.
While the scriptures do not tell the exact date of the birth of Jesus, there is a way to figure the approximate time of the birth of John the Baptist; and since John was born six months before Jesus, by comparing the two, we can again determine at least the season in which Christ was born.
John's father, Zacharias, was a priest in the temple at Jerusalem. During those times, each priest had a definite period of the year in which to serve in the temple. There were 24 such time divisions or "courses" when each priest would serve during the year. The names of these courses are given in. (1 Chronicles 24:7‑19) According to Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews, Vol. 7, p. 14), each of these courses lasted for one week, the first course began serving in the first month, Nisan, in the very early spring. (1 Chronicles 27:1‑2) Each priest in order would then serve his course. After six months, this order of courses would be repeated, so that each priest served a week ‑ twice a year. Then three weeks out of the year, all of the priests served together ‑ during the periods of the Passover, Pentecost, and the Feast of Tabernacles.
With these facts for our foundation, let us notice what course it was that Zacharias served: "There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, OF THE COURSE OF ABIA" (Luke 1:5), or in Hebrew, Abijay ‑ "and it came to pass, that while he executed the priest's office before God in the order of his course...there appeared unto him an angel." The angel revealed that to he and his wife Elizabeth ‑ though they were advanced in years ‑ a son would be born. (Luke 1:5‑13) But what time of the year was it that Zacharias served the course of Abijah? According to (1 Chronicles 24:10), the course of Abijah was the EIGHTH in order. This would have been Iyar 27 to Sivan 5; that is, June 1 to 8.
Following his week of service in the temple, Zacharias was obligated to remain another week, for the following week was Pentecost. But as soon as this ministry was accomplished, he returned to his home in the hill country which was approximately 30 miles south of Jerusalem, and his wife conceived. (Luke 1:23‑24) This was about the middle of June. By adding nine months then, we arrive at the approximate date of John's birth. According to this, John was born in the early spring of the year.
Now since Jesus was six months younger than John (verses 26, 36), we simply add these six months to the time of John's birth in the early spring and come to Mid‑September as the approximate time of the birth of Christ. Again, the evidence indicates that our Lord was born in the FALL of the year, not December 25.
Still further proof of this conclusion may be seen from the fact that at the time Jesus was born, Joseph and Mary had gone to Bethlehem to be taxed. (Luke 2:1‑5) There are no records of this period whatsoever that would indicate that the middle of the winter was the time of taxing. On the other hand, there is evidence that taxes were paid in the fall season of the year. This was the logical time for the taxes to be paid since this was at the end of their harvest. There is also evidence that when Joseph and Mary made this trim, it was the time of a great feast at Jerusalem. This is the most logical reason why Mary went with Joseph ‑ to attend the feast, as they also did on later occasions (Luke 2:41) ‑ for there was no law that required a woman's presence at a taxing.
We know that the time they went to pay taxes was also the time of one of the great feasts at Jerusalem because of the enormous crowd ‑ so enormous in fact, "there was no room in the inn" at Bethlehem. (Luke 2:7) Jerusalem was normally a city of only 120,000 inhabitants, but ‑ according to Josephus ‑ during the feasts, sometimes as many as two million would gather there. With such vast throngs of people coming to the feast, not only would Jerusalem be filled, but the surrounding towns also, including Bethlehem, which was only five miles to the south.
Mere taxation would not cause a crowd this big to be in Bethlehem, for each person returned to his own city to be taxed. And so, taking all of these things into consideration, it seems evident that Joseph and Mary made the journey, not only to pay their taxes, but also to attend a great feast at Jerusalem. This was at the end of the harvest season that they were taxed and this was also the time of the Feast of Tabernacles. All of this ‑ as well as the evidence already given would mark the birth of Christ in the fall ‑ not December 25!
Since Christ was not born on December 25, then how did this particular day come to be a part of the church calendar? History has the answer. Instead of this day being the time of our Saviour's birth, it was the very day and season on which the pagans for centuries had celebrated the birth of the Sun‑god! A study into this shows how far apostate church leaders went in their efforts to merge Christianity and paganism into one apostate religion ‑ even to placing the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ on a date to harmonize with THE PAGAN BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION OF A SO‑CALLED SUN‑GOD! It was in the Fifth Century that the Roman Catholic Church commanded that the birth of Christ be observed forever on December 25th ‑ the day of the old Roman feast of the birth of Sol ‑ one of the names of the sun‑god! (Encyclopedia Americana, Vol. 6, p. 623)
In pagan days, this birth of the sun‑god was especially popular among that branch of the "Mysteries" known as Mithraism. Concerning this we read:
"The largest pagan religious cult which fostered the celebration of December 25 as a holiday through out the Roman and Greek worlds was the pagan sun worship ‑ Mitraism...This winter festival was called 'the Nativity' ‑ the 'nativity of the SUN.'" (The Golden Bough, p. 471)
And not only was Mithra, the sun‑god of Mithraism, said to be born at this time of the year, but Osiris, Horus, Hercules, Bacchus, Adonis, Jupiter, Tammuz, and other sun‑gods were also supposedly born at what is today called the "Christmas" season ‑ THE WINTER SOLSTICE! (Doane, p. 474; Hislop, p. 93)
Says a noted writer:
"The winter solstice (was) the time at which all the sun‑gods from Osiris to Jupiter and Mithra had celebrated their (birthdays), the celebration being adorned with the pine tree of Adonis, the Holly of Saturn, and the mistletoe...tappers represented the kindling of the new born sun‑god's fire..." (Man and His Gods, p. 201)
Now the fact that the various sun‑gods that were worshipped in different countries were all believed to have been born at the same season (in the old fables), would seem to indicate that they were but different forms (under different names) of the original son of the sun‑god, Tammuz, of Babylon, the land from which sun‑worship originally spread.
In Babylon, the birthday of Tammuz was celebrated at the time of the winter solstice with great feasts, revelry, and drunkeness ‑ the same way many celebrate it today! The ancient celebration spread and became so much an established custom that
"in pagan Rome and Greece, in the days of the Teutonic barbarians, in the remote times of ancient Egyptian civilization, in the infancy of the race East and West and North and South, the period of the winter solstice was ever a period of rejoicing and festivity." (Curiosities of Popular Customs, p. 242)
When this mid‑winter festival came to Rome, it was known as the Saturnalia ‑ Saturn being but another name of Nimrod or Tammuz as "the hidden god." This feast was the most vile, immoral feast that ever disgraced pagan Rome. It was a season of license, drunkeness, and debauchery when all restraints of law were laid aside. And it was from this very feast at Rome that the merry‑making of this season passed into the Roman Catholic Church and on down to our present civilization!
"It is a matter of common knowledge," says one writer, "that much of our association with the Christmas season ‑ the holidays, the giving of presents and the general feeling of geniality ‑ is but the inheritance from the Roman winter festival of the Saturnalia...survivals of paganism." (The Legacy of Rome, p. 242)
Tertullian mentions that the practice of exchanging gifts at this season was a part of the pagan Roman Saturnalia. WHEN THIS MID‑WINTER FESTIVAL WAS ADOPTED INTO THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH, this custom was also adopted.
As usual, however, apostate leaders tried to find some point of similarity between the pagan and Christian religion, to make the merger seem less obvious. In this case, reference was made to the fact that the wise men when they came to see the Christ‑child presented to him gifts. Some suppose that this is where the custom of exchanging gifts at Christmas time came. But not so. The wisemen did not exchange gifts among themselves. They presented their gifts to JESUS who was born king of Israel. It was an Eastern custom to present gifts when coming into the presence of a King. But these gifts were not birthday gifts. When the wisemen arrived, it was some time after the day on which Jesus was born. By this time, he was no longer in a stable, but in a HOUSE. (Matthew 2:9‑11) Obviously, the gifts of the wisemen were not Christmas gifts.
In connection with the customs of the "Christmas" season, we will mention the Christmas tree. An old Babylonish fable went like this: Semiramis, the mother of Tammuz, claimed that overnight an evergreen tree sprang up from a dead tree stump. The dead stump supposedly symbolized her dead husband Nimrod; the new evergreen tree was the symbol that Nimrod had come to life again in the person of Tammuz!
This idea spread and developed so that the various nations all have had their legends about sacred trees! Among the Druids, the oak was sacred; among the Egyptians, it was the palm; and in Rome, it was the fir, which was decorated with red berries during the Saturnalia! (Curiosities of Popular Customs, p. 242) Among the Scandinavians, the fir tree was sacred to their god Odin.
"The Scandinavian god Woden or Odin was believed to bestow special gifts at Yuletide to those who honoured him by approaching his sacred FIR TREE." (Festivals, Holy Days, and Saints' Days, p. 222)
And even as other rites of the Yuletide season were absorbed into "Christianity," so also is the wide‑spread use of the tree at this season a carry over of an ancient practice!
"The Christmas tree...recapitulates the idea of tree worship...gilded nuts and balls symbolizing the sun...all of the festivities of the (pagan) winter solstice have been absorbed into Christmas day...the use of holly and mistletoe to the Druidic ceremonies; the Christmas tree to the honours paid to Odin's sacred fir..." (Festivals, Holy Days, and Saints' Days, p. 238)
In at least ten Biblical references, the "green" tree is associated with idolatry and false worship.
"Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under EVERY GREEN TREE." (Deuteronomy 12:2)
"For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under EVERY GREEN TREE." (1 Kings 14:23)
"And he sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, and on the hills, and under EVERY GREEN TREE." (2 Kings 16:4)
"And they set them up images and groves in every high hill, and under EVERY GREEN TREE." (2 Kings 17:10)
Of course all trees are green at one time or another; apparently then, the references to the "tree" tree refer to a tre that is especially noted for being green ‑ the evergreen or a tree of that family!
Taking all of this into consideration, it is interesting to notice the reading of (Jeremiah 10:1‑5) and compare it with today's custom of decorating a tree during the Christmas season:
"Hear ye the word which the Lord speaketh unto you, O house of Israel: Thus saith the Lord, LEARN NOT THE WAY OF THE HEATHEN...FOR THE CUSTOMS OF THE PEOPLE ARE VAIN; FOR ONE CUTTETH A TREE OUT OF THE FOREST, THE WORK OF THE HANDS OF THE WORKMAN, WITH THE AX. THEY DECK IT WITH SILVER AND WITH GOLD; THEY FASTEN IT WITH NAILS AND WITH HAMMERS, THAT IT MOVE NOT. THEY ARE UPRIGHT AS THE PALM TREE, BUT SPEAK NOT; THEY MUST NEEDS BE BORNE, BECAUSE THEY CANNOT GO. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, NEITHER also IS IT IN THEM TO DO GOOD."
Of course the people in the days of Jeremiah, as the context goes on to show, were actually making an idol out of the tree. We do not mean to infer that people who, today, place Christmas trees in their homes and churches are deliberately or knowingly WORSHIPPING THE TREE. What we are saying is that today's use of the tree is plainly a carry over from paganism ‑ in a much modified form of course. But whatever the difference may be between the ancient use of the tree as compared with present day customs, NO ONE CAN DENY THAT THESE THINGS OF WHICH WE HAVE BEEN SPEAKING ARE CUSTOMS OF MEN. And God says: "The customs of the people are vain" ‑‑ worthless, empty ‑‑ they add no power to true worship.
Christmas was adopted into the Roman church during the fifth century. In the sixth century, missionaries were sent through the northern part of Europe to gather pagans into the Roman fold. They found that the 24th of June was a very popular day among these people. In order to induce them into the "church," as was the usual custom after the falling away, apostate church leaders would allow them to continue celebrating their pagan holiday, only they would attempt to associate it with some Christian event.
But what could they associate with June 24th? They had already adopted a day to commorate the birth of Christ ‑ December 25th. And this error led to another error. They noticed that June 24th was approximately six months before December 25, and since John the Baptist was born six months before Jesus, why not set June 24 as the day to celebrate John's birthday? This is what they did. To this day, June 24 is known on the papal calendar as St. John's Day or the Nativity of St. John! But obviously, such an idea is built on a false foundation, just as almost all of the Roman Catholic Church ‑‑ false belief in Jesus Christ ‑‑ the Catholics worship another christ and another god, for John was not born on June 24; and mixing his name with this day was but a cover up, so the old pagan holiday could be continued ‑ now within the "church."
In ancient times, this day was set aside for Baal worship. In Britain, before the entrance of Christianity there, the 24th of June was celebrated by the Druids with blazing FIRES in honour of Baal (the sun‑god, Nimrod in deified form). The writings of such noted historians as Herodotus, Wilkinson, Layard, and others tell of these ceremonial fires in different countries. When June 24th was adopted into the "church" and renamed as St. John's day, so also were the sacred fires adopted and renamed as "St. John's Fires!"
"I have seen the people running and leaping through the St. John's fires in Ireland..." says one writer of the past century, "proud of passing through unsinged...thinking themselves in a special manner blest by the ceremony." (Toland's Druids, p. 107)
In reading of such rites, we are reminded of similar practices into which the backslidden children of Israel fell when they would "pass through the fire to Molech." (Jeremiah 32:35; Ezekiel 20:31) Obviously, none of these practices had any connection with John the Baptist or Christmas.
Besides the fire ceremony that was observed on June 24th, this day was also known among those heathen tribes as the festival of water. (The Great Apostasy, p. 28) And had not John the Baptist been especially known as the one that baptized with WATER? So this slight similarity helped disguise the continuation of the pagan day, now renamed! But the real significance that connected this day with water was that it was sacred to OANNES, the ancient fish‑ god! (Hislop, p. 114) Stemming from another ancient Babylonian fable Nimrod was supposed to have reappeared in the "Mysteries" after he was slain as OANNES. (Bensen's Egypt, Vol. 1, p. 707) In an article on Nimrod, Fausett says: "Oannes the fish‑god, BABYLON'S CIVILIZER, rose out of the red sea" (Bible Encyclopedia and Dictionary p. 510) So we see how Nimrod, water, and the fish‑god Oannes were all connected.
Now in the Latin language adopted by the Roman Catholic Church, John was called JOANNES. Notice how similar JOANNES is to OANNES! By putting emphasis on certain points of similarity between paganism and Christianity, another pagan day was smoothly and cunningly adopted into the papal calendar, disguised with the name of John the Baptist!
The pagans for centuries prayed to and worshipped the Great Mother of heathenism. In order to bring these pagans into the fallen church, the ancient worship and rites that had been used to worship the pagan Mother were continued ‑ only they were told to use the name of Mary, the Mother of Jesus, instead of the old names of Diana, Isis, Astarte, Artemis, etc. And even as other ideas that had been associated with the pagan Mother goddess were merged into the "church" in an attempt to make Christianity and paganism appear to be one and the same, so also, August 15, the day of the ancient festival of Isis or Artemis, was simply renamed as the day of the "Assumption of the Virgin Mary" and right on up to present times, this day is still highly honoured. (The Story of Civilization, p. 746)
As one writer speaking of this feast day of the Assumption of the Virgin says:
"It is celebrated on August 15th; but that was the date of the great festival of Diana...with whom Isis was identified, and one can see, thus, how Mary had gradually taken the place of the goddess." (The Paganism in our Christianity, p. 132)
It is evident that the fallen church Roman Catholic Church cared little about truthfulness as to when events actually happened. They simply appointed celebrations on the very days that were popular among the pagans.
Another day, supposedly in honour of Mary is called the Purification of the Virgin Mary or "Candlemas day," which is celebrated on February 2. On this day, Catholic priests pronounce blessings on candles which are then distributed to the people at mass. And on this day all of the candles to be used during the year in the Catholic rituals are blessed.
But how did the special observance of February come to be set aside as Candlemas day or the day of the Purification of the Virgin? This, like other days, was instituted in the "church" to replace a pagan day. Not only did the fallen church adopt this day, but also its customs! You see, in the early days of Rome, this festival was observed by the carrying of torches and candles in honour of Februa, from whose name our month of February is named! The Greeks held the feast in honour of the goddess Ceres, the Mother of Proserpina, who on this day was said to have sought her daughter in the lower world with torches!
Among the Egyptians, this day was also observed in honor of the goddess Neith on the same day that is known today as "Candlemas Day" in the Roman Catholic Church! So the observance of Candlemas at this time of the year, its association with the Mother goddess, and the use of candles are all beliefs that were unmistakably adopted from paganism.
These days and times we have mentioned ‑ as well as numerous others ‑ were all adopted into the calendar of the Romish Church from paganism. One must wonder if the apostle Paul were to be raised up to preach to this generation, if he would not say to the professing church today, as he did to the Galatians long ago "Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years, I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labor in vain." (Galatians 4:9‑11) To what days did Paul have reference?
The context shows that the Galatians had been converted from the pagan worship of the "gods (Verse 8), and so it is evident that some of them went back to their former worship (Verse 9), the days and times they were observing were those days and times that were set aside to honor these pagan gods! Yet, it was these days that the fallen church (ALL so‑called CHRISTIAN CHURCHES OF THE WORLD TODAY) has merged into her worship ‑ changing them slightly, disguising them with Christian sounding names ‑ and their observance has continued to this day!
Perhaps we will find the answer by continuing our examination of the "parts" of the whole thing.
THE MOTHER AND CHILD
There is an almost universal use of pictures or statutes of a mother and a small baby by those who celebrate "Christmas." Believer and unbeliever alike, send cards with such pictures and place "manger" displays on their front lawns or at their place of business. Some towns or other government bodies erect them on public property weeks before December 25th. Some who do this are professing Christians, but many never darken a church door, open a Bible, or repent of a sin. Could a "mother and child" be a non‑Christian symbol?
Our contemporary world has the Roman Catholics with their veneration of the "woman," calling her "Mary, the mother of God," but worshipping her as a god, for they pray to her for intercession to her "god‑child." In countries where Romanism holds total sway, all pretense of worshipping the "Father" is forgotten, and the whole ritual of worship is to the woman and her child (along with the worship of dead "saints" as gods) which is identical to the ancient system of Baal worship.
MOTHER AND CHILD WORSHIP
One of the most outstanding examples of how Babylonian paganism has continued to our day may be seen in the way the Roman Catholic Church invented Mary worship to replace the ancient worship of the Mother goddess of Babylon. After the death of Nimrod, his adulterous wife gave birth to a child who she claimed was supernaturally conceived. She taught that he was a god‑child; that he was Nimrod, their leader, reborn; that she and her child were divine. (Two Babylons, p. 21) This story was widely known in ancient Babylon and developed into a well established worship ‑ the worship of the Mother and the Child. Numerous monuments of Babylon show the goddess Mother Semiramis with her child Tammuz in her arms. (Encyclopedia of Religions, Vol. 2, p. 398)
When the people of Babylon were scattered to the various parts of the earth, they carried the worship of the Divine Mother and her god‑child with them. This explains why it is that all nations in ancient times worshipped a divine Mother and god‑ child, in one form or another, centuries before the true saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, was born into this world! In the various countries where this worship spread, the Mother and Child were called by different names, due to the dividing of the languages at Babel, but the basic story remains the same.
Among the Chinese, the Mother goddess was called Shingmoo or the "Holy Mother." She is pictured with child in arms and rays of glory around her head. (The Heathen Religion, p. 60) The ancient Germans worshipped the Virgin "Hertha" with child in arms. The Scandinavians called her "Disa" who was also pictured with a child. The Etruscans called her "Nutria" and among the Druids, the "Virgo‑Paritura" was worshiped as the "Mother of God." (Bible Myths, p. 334) In India, she was known as Indrani, who was also represented with child in arms.
The Babylonian Mother was known as Aphodite or Ceres to the Greeks; Nana, to the Sumerians; and as Venus or Fortuna to her devotees in the olden days of Rome, and her child was known as Jupiter. (Two Babylons, p. 20) For ages, Isi, the "Great goddess" and her child Iswara, have been worshipped in India where great temples were erected for their worship. (Two Babylons p. 20) In Asia, the Mother was known as Cybele and the child as Deoius. "But regardless of her name or place," says on writer, "she was the wife of Baal, the virgin queen of heaven, who bore fruit although she never conceived." (Strange Sects and Curious Cults, p. 12)
When the children of Israel fell into apostasy, they too were defiled with this Mother‑goddess worship. As we read in Judges 2:13,
"They forsook the LORD, and served Baal and Ashtaroth."
Ashtaroth or Ashtoreth was the name by which the goddess was know to the children of Israel. It is pitiful to think that even those who had known the true God would depart from Him and worship the heathen Mother. But this is exactly what they did. (See Judges 10:6; 1 Samuel 7:3‑4; 12:10; 1 Kings 11:5; and 2 Kings 23:13) One of the titles by which the goddess was known among the Israelites was "the queen of heaven," as we read in Jeremiah 44:17‑19.
"But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto THE QUEEN OF HEAVEN, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then had we plenty of vituals, and were well, and saw no evil. But since we left off to burn incense to THE QUEEN OF HEAVEN, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, we have wanted all things, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine. And when we burned incense to THE QUEEN OF HEAVEN, and poured out drink offerings unto her, did we make her cakes to worship her, and pour out drink offerings unto her, without our men?"
The prophet Jeremiah rebuked them for worshipping her, but they rebelled against his warning and thus brought upon themselves swift destruction at the hand of God!
In Ephesus, the Great Mother was known as Diana. The temple dedicated to her in that city was one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world! And not only at Ephesus, but throughout all Asia and the world was the Mother‑goddess worshipped.
"So that not only this our craft is in danger to be set at nought; but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana should be despised, and her magnificence should be destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worshippeth." (Acts 19:27)
In Egypt, the Babylonian Mother was known as Isis and her child as Horus. Nothing is more common on the religious monuments of Egypt than the infant Horus seated on the lap of his mother.
The worship of the Mother and Child was also known in England in olden times, for in 1747, a religious monument was found at Oxford, of pagan origin, on which is exhibited a female nursing an infant.
"Thus we see," says the historian, "that the Virgin and child were worshipped in pagan times from China to Britain...and even in Mexico the 'Mother and child' were worshipped." (Bible Myths, p. 334)
This false worship, having spread from Babylon to the various nations, in different names and forms, finally became established at Rome and throughout the Roman Empire. Says a noted writer of this period:
"The worship of the Great Mother...was very popular under the Roman Empire. Inscriptions prove that the two (the Mother and the Child) received divine honours...not only in Italy and especially at Rome, but also in the provinces, particularly in Africa, Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, and Bulgaria." (The Golden Bough, Vol. 1, p. 356)
It was during this period when the worship of the Divine Mother was very prominent that the Saviour, our Lord Jesus Christ, founded the TRUE New Testament Church. And what a glorious church it was in those early days! By the third and fourth centuries, however, what was known as the "church" greatly departed from the original faith, falling into that great apostasy about which the apostles had warned. When this "falling away" came, much paganism was mixed with Christianity. Unconverted pagans were taken into the professing church and in numerous instances were allowed to continue many of their pagan rites and customs ‑ usually with a few reservations or changes to make these pagan beliefs appear more similar to some Christian doctrine.
One of the best examples of such a carry over from paganism may be seen in the way the so‑called Christian Churches allow the pagans to continue their worship of the Great Mother ‑ only in a slightly different form and with a new name! You see, many pagans has been drawn to Christianity, but so strong in their mind was the adoration for the Mother‑goddess, that they did not want to forsake her. Compromising church leaders saw that if they could find some similarity in Christianity with the Mother‑goddess worship of the pagans, they could increase their numbers by bringing many pagans, into their fold.
But who could they use to replace the Great mother of paganism and fool those who were true Christians into accepting the false doctrines and customs? Of course Mary, the Mother of Jesus was the most logical person for them to choose. Why then couldn't they allow the pagans to continue their prayers instead of the former names by which she was known? This would give the pagan worship of the Mother the appearance of Christianity, and in this way, both sides could be pleased ‑ as it were ‑ drawn into the church. This is exactly what happened! Little by little, the worship and doctrines that had been associated with the pagan Mother came to be applied to Mary. Thus the pagan worship of the "Mother" continued ‑ hiding now right within the professing church!
It is evident that this Mary‑worship was not the worship of Mary at all, but a continuation of the old pagan worship of the dedicated, and godly woman ‑ especially chosen to bear the body of our Saviour ‑ yet never was she considered as a DIVINE person or a goddess by the early true church. None of the Apostles or even the Lord Jesus Himself ever hinted at the idea of Mary worship.
As the Encyclopedia Britannica states, during the first centuries of the church, no emphasis was placed upon Mary whatsoever. (The Golden Brough, Vol. 14, p. 309) It was not until the time of Constantine ‑ the early part of the fourth century ‑ that anyone began to look to Mary as a goddess.
But even at this period, such worship of Epiphanius who denounced certain women of Thrace, Arabia, and elsewhere, for worshipping Mary as an actual goddess and offering cakes at her shrine. Yet, within just a few more years, Mary worship was not only condoned by what is known today as the Catholic Church, but it became one of her main doctrines, as well as the rest of the so‑called Christian Church World, as it is today.
Since Rome had long been a center for the worship of the goddess of paganism, we need not be surprised that this was one of the first places that Mary worship became established within the "Church," a fact that plainly reveals that Mary worship was the direct result of pagan influence!
Another city where the ancient pagan Mother worship was very popular was Ephesus; and here too, attempts were made to merge into Christianity. In Ephesus, from primitive times, the Mother goddess had been called Diana. (Acts 19) Here, the pagans had worshipped her as the goddess of Virginity and Motherhood. (Fausett's Bible Encyclopedia, p. 484) She was said to represent the generative powers of nature and so was pictured with many breasts. A tower shaped crown, a symbol of the tower of Babel, adorned her head.
When beliefs are held by a people for centuries, they are not easily forsaken. So church leaders at Ephesus ‑ when the falling away came ‑ also reasoned that if they would let the pagans continue their old worship of the Great Mother, they could bring them into the "church."
CHURCH LEADERS HAVE NEVER REALIZED THAT A PERSON CONVERTED IN SUCH A FASHION IS NEVER REALLY CONVERTED. IN FACT THOSE PEOPLE LIVE A VERY MISERABLE LIFE. IT IS ALSO ONE OF THE REASONS SO MUCH EVIL HAS BEEN DONE IN THE NAME OF CHRISTIANITY.
So, here too, at Ephesus, the Mother goddess worship was mixed into Christianity, the name of Mary being substituted in the place of the name Diana. The pagans continued to pray to the Mother goddess, they kept their idols of her, and the so‑called Christian Church allowed them to worship her along with Christ. But such a mixture was not God's way of gaining "converts!"
"Ye shall make you no idols nor graven image, neither rear you up a standing image, neither shall ye set up any image of stone in your land, to bow down unto it: for I am the Lord your God." (Leviticus 26:1)
When Paul had come to Ephesus in earlier days, no compromise was made with paganism. People were truly converted in those days and destroyed their idols of the Mother‑goddess.
"For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, which made silver shrines for Diana, brought no small gain unto the craftsmen; Whom he called together with the workmen of like occupation, and said, Sirs, ye know that by this craft we have our wealth. Moreover ye see and hear, that not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia, this Paul hath persuaded and turned away much people, saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands: So that not only this our craft is in danger to be set at nought; but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana should be despised, and her magnificence should be destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worshippeth." (Acts 19:24‑27)
How tragic that this church, the people for whom our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ died, in later centuries compromised and even adopted the abominable Mother‑goddess worship ‑ hiding it under a cloak of professing Christianity ‑ even to this day! And finally, when the worship of Mary was made an official doctrine of the Catholic Church in 431 A.D. in what city did it take place? It was at the Council of Ephesus, the city of the pagan Mother Diana! The pagan influence in such a decision is apparent.
Another stronghold for the worship of the Great Mother of heathenism was Alexandria, Egypt. Here she was known by the name Isis. As Christianity spread to Alexandria, similar compromises were made as had been made at Ephesus and Rome. The pagan mother worship was skillfully injected into "Christianity" by the church theologians of this city. Now the very fact that it was in cities like Alexandria, Ephesus, and Rome, where the worship of the pagan Mother was first mixed into Christian worship, clearly shows how such was the direct continuation of the old paganism.
Further proof that Mary‑worship is but the outgrowth of the old popular worship of the Pagan Mother‑ goddess, may be seen in the TITLES that are ascribed to her. Let us notice how the pagan titles by which the Mother goddess was known were smoothly transferred to Mary, and much of the old worship continued!
For example, Mary is often called "THE MADONNA." But such a title has absolutely nothing to do with Mary, the mother of Jesus! Instead, this expression is the translation of one of the titles by which the Babylonian goddess was known! In deified form, Nimrod came to be known as Baal. The title of his wife, the female divinity, would be the equivalent of Baalti. In English, this word means "My Lady;" in Latin, "Mea Domina," and in Italian, it is corrupted into the well‑known "Madonna!" (Two Babylons, p. 20)
Among the Phoenicians, the Mother goddess was known as "The Lady of the Sea" (Harper's Bible Dictionary, p. 47) and even this title is applied to Mary ‑ though there is no connection between Mary and the sea whatsoever!
The Scriptures make it plain that there is ONE mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." (1 Timothy 2:5)
Yet Roman Catholicism teaches that Mary is also a "mediator." And therefore, prayers to her form a very important part of Catholic worship. But how was it that Mary came to be looked upon as a mediator? Again the influence of paganism is obvious. You see, the Mother goddess of Babylon bore as one of her names, "Mylitta," that is, "The Mediatrix." And so this too passed into the apostate church which to this day speaks of Mary as the Mediatrix or Mediator!
Another title that was borrowed from paganism and applied to Mary is "the queen of heaven." But Mary, the mother of Jesus, is NOT the queen of heaven, for the "queen of heaven" was a title of the pagan Mother‑ goddess that was worshipped centuries before Mary was ever born! Yes, way back in the days of Jeremiah as we have previously shown.
Also Jeremiah had this to say about the "queen of heaven:"
"The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to THE QUEEN OF HEAVEN, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. Do they provoke me to anger? saith the Lord: do they not provoke themselves to the confusion of their own faces? Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Behold, mine anger and my fury shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and not be quenched." (Jeremiah 7:18‑20)
In this connection, it is interesting to note that right down to modern times at Paphos, in Cyprus, the women make offerings to the Virgin Mary as Queen of Heaven, in the ruins of the ancient Temple of Astarte. (The Paganism in Our Christianity, p. 133)
As we have seen, the name of the Mother‑goddess in Egypt was Isis and her son's name was Horus. Now one of the titles by which Isis was known was the "Mother of God." Later this same title was applied to Mary by the theologians of Alexandria. (The Paganism in Our Christianity, p. 130)
This again was obviously an attempt to make Christianity appear similar to the ancient paganism with its Mother‑goddess worship. Now we know that Mary was the mother of Jesus, but only in the sense of his human nature, his humanity.
The Catholic title and the original meaning of the title, however, went beyond this. It attached a glorified position to the MOTHER and in much the same way, Roman Catholics are taught to think of Mary today!
The worship of Isis, the Egyptian form of the Babylonian Mother‑goddess, was not limited to Egypt. It was introduced into Rome about 80 B.C. when Sulla founded an Isiac college there. And to show to what extent that paganism was mixed with "Christianity" we need only to mention the fact that Isis, the pagan "Mother of God," was worshipped in a shrine that "stood on the Vatican Hill where now stands St. Peter's," the center of the church which worships the "queen of heaven," "Lady of the Sea," "Mediatrix," "Madonna," "Mother of God," and others ‑ all of which were the titles of the pagan Mother‑goddess ‑ were, little by little applied to Mary.
Such titles plainly show that the SUPPOSED worship of Mary today is in reality the continuation of the goddess worship of pagan times. But there is further proof of this that can be seen in the way Mary came to be represented in the art of the fallen church.
So firmly written in the paganistic mind was the image of the Mother‑goddess with child in her arms, that when the days of the great falling away came,
"the ancient portrait of Isis and the child Horus was ultimately accepted not only in popular opinion, but by formal episcopal sanction, as the portrait of the Virgin and her child." (Man and His Gods, p. 216)
Representations of Isis and her child were often enclosed in a framework of flowers. This practice too was applied to Mary who is often pictured the same way, as those who have studied Medieval Art well know.
The Egyptian goddess Isis was often represented as standing on the Crescent moon with twelve stars surrounding her head. (Kenrick's Egypt, Vol. 1, p. 425; Isis Unveiled, p. 49) Even this was adopted and applied to Mary, for in almost every Roman Catholic Church on the continent of Europe and many in America may be seen pictures of Mary exactly the same way!
To satisfy the superstitious minds of the heathen, leaders of the falling away attempted to make Mary appear similar to the goddess of paganism and exalt her to a divine plane to compete with the pagan Mother. Even as the pagans had statutes of the goddess, so likewise, statutes were made of "Mary" ‑ even though the scriptures forbid such a practice! In some cases, the VERY SAME STATUES that had been worshipped as Isis (with her child), were simply renamed as Mary and the Christ child ‑ and the old worship continued! "When Christianity triumphed," says one writer, "these paintings and figures became those of the Madonna and child without any break in continuity: No archaeologist, in fact, can now tell whether some of these objects represent the one or the other." (The Paganism in Our Christianity, p. 129)
This shows just how far apostate leaders will go in their attempts to merge paganism with Christianity. Many of these renamed figures are crowned and adorned with jewels ‑ in exactly the same way as the images of the Hindoo and Egyptian Virgins. Now Mary, the mother of Jesus was not rich, but poor. From where then came the jewels and the crowns seen on these statues that are supposedly of her? Obviously such representations are not Christian, but are of a pre‑Christian origin instead!
So by compromises ‑ some very obvious, others more hidden ‑ the worship of the ancient Mother of the pagans was continued within the "church," the church of the falling away, with the name of Mary being substituted in the place of the old names. And this slight change has deceived the entire world!
When the "day," December 25th, is examined, some rather strange things are discovered.
FIRST, (and this should certainly lead you, if you are a professing Christian to read on) Christians observed no such day as "the birthday of Jesus" during the lives of the Disciples, or those that followed immediately after them, as has been shown. Neither did the Christian founders of the American colonies who were of those who had come out of "the great whore, the Roman Catholic Church."
SECOND, no one has ever come forward with even one verse of Scripture admonishing believers to observe any such "celebration" of "the birthday of Christ," nor is there any. Although such Hebrew Holy Days as the Passover, the Sabbath, and the annual giving of the tithes are mentioned in both Old and New Scriptures, GOD has left NO INSTRUCTIONS about Jesus' "birthday."
THIRD, the description of Jesus' birth night tells of a time to be taxed, of shepherds in the field with their flocks at night, and the city of Bethlehem full of travelers ("no room for them in the inn" Luke 2:1‑8). Tax time was harvest time throughout the Roman Empire, and tithing time was harvest time according to the Law of Moses. (Exodus 23:14‑19; Leviticus 23:1‑10; Deuteronomy 16:16‑17) Common sense and custom would have the Roman governor collect taxes at the time the people had money from the harvest; when they had been taught to pay their tithes under Moses' Law. Midwinter, i.e., December 25th, simply does NOT fit the season described in the Holy Word.
FOURTH, even a very brief search of the history books of various nations and peoples, shows that almost all had a mid‑winter "festival" embodying all the customs of the modern "Christmas," such as feasting, drunken revelry, sexual excess, burning a log, a tree, giving gifts, etc., and it was ALWAYS done in conjunction with THE ANCIENT RELIGIOUS PAGAN CUSTOMS!
IS THE CHRISTMAS "SPIRIT" CHRISTIAN?
Some credit the "goings‑on" of Christmas' to a nebulous "spirit" they call the "Christmas spirit," and many praise the workings of that "spirit."
But, do the people suddenly change their beliefs? Do they suddenly all act like Christians and then cease to act as such after December 25th? But that isn't right either, is it? For most of their actions have nothing whatever to do with Christ!
In fact, the "Christmas spirit" seems to cause almost all to act in a manner that is totally out of line with the teachings of Jesus Christ. Stores raise many prices, often pushing cheap and flimsy merchandise for "gifts," men exchange bottles or cases of whiskey, beer and other mind distorting and altering drugs, employers give "Christmas parties" with free liquor often with tragic consequences in auto accidents, or with illicit sex liaisons. Tens of thousands of families, caught up in the so‑called "Christmas spirit," overspend, and lay an additional burden of debt upon themselves for months and even years afterward.
In addition, untold millions of little children are deceived about the existence of a little creature called "Santa Claus." Parents, who under most circumstances would severely punish their children for telling lies, blithely lie to these same children, and do it with a smile on their faces and joy in their hearts! Completely contrary to the Word of God!
Are those things "Christian?" Of course not. Then what is this festival which is called "Christmas?" The answer, which should be suspected by Christians as they watch the world "celebrate," is that this festival called "Christmas"IS NOT A CHRISTIAN HOLIDAY AT ALL, but is exactly that which it appears to be, a pagan debauchery whose origins are not, and can not be, in the Holy One of Israel, the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus, in the sermon on the mount, taught that:
"a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit" (Matthew 7:17‑18)
TRY (TEST) THE CHRISTMAS "SPIRIT"
We are told by John,
"Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits [plural] whether they are of God." (1 John 4:1)
This simply means that the Christian is NOT to believe everything that seems to have a "spirit" behind it to be originated by God. Jesus warned of deceptions that,
"if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." (Matthew 24:2
Santa Claus is that jolly old fellow who appears once a year, and then only to do good by bringing toys and games to "good little children." Is that ALL there is to "Santa?" No, my Christian friend, it is not.
Although you may not believe in "evolution," Santa, as we know him today, is a product of evolution. Let us trace his origin from the ancient times. And you will learn what we mean by this statement.
In Egypt, where the mother and child were worshipped, the "father‑god" was known as "khons" or "Khonos." The name means "huntsman," or "god of the chase," and scholars have identified him as the "Nimrod" of Genesis 10, "the mighty hunter," and the builder of "Bable" (Babylon). Pagan gods are always deified humans, but that is a story too long for this short presentation. He is represented in both Babylon Egypt as a half‑man and half‑ bull, and also half‑man and half‑horse (the centaur of mythology), usually with wings, and he is called "Baalabirin," or "the winged one." He is called "the omnipotent one," and also "the unknown one," giving him the unknowable qualities that left him in the background. He would be "THE UNKNOWN GOD" worshipped in Athens in. (Acts 17:23)
Over the centuries, his images evolved into more human form, usually clothed in a leopard skin, signifying his hunting prowess over the swiftest of animals. This spotted garment became a mark of kings and priests in Africa and Asia. The priests of "Bacchus" in Greece were clothed in leopard skins, later adopting the spotted skin of a young fawn, or dyeing their robes to look like a spotted skin.
The "spotted deer" seems to have been adopted as combining both the spots of the leopard and the bull (or calif) of idol worship. In Ninevah, the capitol of Assyria, states of Nimrod (Baal) show him wearing a spotted dear skin, or in some cases, carrying a spotted deer, AND NOW WE ARE GETTING CLOSE TO "SANTA CLAUS!"
In many historical books is a drawing of Nimrod and the similarity to "Santa Claus" can be seen in a long, flowing, white beard, the ornate dress, the "reindeer," the fir tree (the "Christmas" tree!), and with wings, giving him the power to "fly through the air!"
It is usually shown with a picture of the Greek "Bacchus" and the similarity is certain. He does not carry the spotted deer but has a spotted robe, the tree of uncertain origin, and the "cup," the symbol of drunken revelry, so great a part of "Christmas."
"SANTA CLAUS" IN THE BIBLE
The true God has not left believers without testimony of the actual identity of this false "god." He describes him, and lays on him three "names" by which we can know who, or what, he is. Below are presented three descriptive verses in Isaiah 14.
Verses 14 and 25, show that he is called "the king of Babylon" and "the Assyrian." Since the "Nimrod" of Genesis 10 is the founder of BOTH Babylon and Assyria, these verses can only be speaking of Nimrod, alias "Baal." His third name is "Lucifer," as is also shown.
"That thou shalt take up this proverb against THE KING OF BABYLON, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!...How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I WILL ASCEND INTO HEAVEN, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I WILL ASCEND ABOVE THE HEIGHTS OF THE CLOUDS; I will be like the most High (able to see what all men, women and children are doing all through the year)...That I will break THE ASSYRIAN in my land, and upon my mountains tread him under foot..." (Isaiah 14:4‑25)
Let us briefly analyze this "Lucifer," whose destruction is prophesied from verse 4 through verse 27.
Verse 12: His activities prior to his destruction weaken the nations, i.e. they are NOT good.
Verse 13: His desire is to be "above" all things, to have a "throne" even above God. Santa Claus in the department stores is often seated on a "throne," and little children are required to come "up" to him to solicit his good favor. He will be in the "congregation," i.e. in the "church of God," which he
is, as most churches bring in worship of "Santa" in some way. Even the direction of his abode is given as being "north." Santa is supposed to reside at the "north pole," or the regions of the north!
Verse 14: We are told Santa comes to every home, flying through the air with his reindeer and sleigh. "Modern" promoters now often have him arrive at a shopping center by helicopter.
"I will be like the most High," should have an ominous ring to believers. It means he will usurp God's glory, God's praise, to ACTUALLY TAKE THE PLACE OF GOD! This "Santa Claus" does in the hearts and minds of untold millions of little children every year as both evil and foolish adults tell them of the good things "Santa," not God, will bring them as a "reward" at "Christmas!" For most of these children the true God, the Lord Jesus Christ, never becomes as real to them as "Santa Claus" was when they were children. "Santa" has become "like the most High."
TELL THE CHILDREN SANTA'S A MYTH
QUESTION: "What should Sunday School teachers tell their pupils about Santa" ‑‑ G.H.
ANSWER: "Tell them the truth. Explain that Santa is a mythical character, that he symbolizes the merriment accompanying the yuletide season, that he has no connection whatsoever with the real meaning of Christmas, which is the celebration of the birth of Christ.
The name Santa Claus probably comes from Saint Nicholas, bishop of Myra, and patron saint of Russia, young people and sailors. His day is actually Dec. 6, but somehow through the years, Santa Claus slipped into Christmas. He has come to be more associated with folklore than with the birth of the Christ child but, since it has become customary to portray him as the one who brings gifts on Christmas, his intrusion into this Holy Day seems to have been inevitable. Little children must have difficulty separating the two, and this is unfortunate. I have talked to people who, as children, found out that Santa was a myth, and dismissed Christ as a myth too.
A Christian parent can follow one of two courses: Make room for Santa, but explain to your children that he is just a mythical symbol of good will, and that he doesn't really exist. Or, make Christmas the birthday of Christ, as it truly is, and let Santa Claus shift for himself. Explain to them that the giving of gifts is to celebrate the love of God, who loved the world so much that He sent His only begotten Son to redeem it. Such a practice would enhance the meaning of Christmas." (My Answer: By Billy Graham, The Phoenix Gazette, Monday, January 25, 1971)
Billy Graham has apparently recognized HOW the deception of "Santa Claus" creates a negative spirit in the minds of little children, often preventing them from being able to believe in Christ. And that, after all, is the object of all of satan's deceptions.
If Billy Graham really believed what he says, he'd go on nationwide TV and preach against "Santa Claus," but being the deceiver that he is no such thing will happen. For to do so he would lose his position in the "world."
In case the above has not convinced you that "Santa Claus" is "like the most High," there is more.
If you do not think "worship" of Santa Claus is the natural result of "Christmas," read the article below ‑‑ and think of the millions of little children who learn to "believe" the same way.
'WILL SANTA COME?'
the answer is with you...
By April Daien:
"The children gathered on the gray stone steps. There were three of them and they had come to see the visitors off.
They had overheard us taking in low tones with their mother about Christmas. They had heard their mother say she didn't think there would be a Christmas.
They heard her say she would try to get them 'something.' So the children followed the visitors, waiting eagerly for some refutation of the conversation. One of them clutched a tiny Christmas tree in her hands. 'You want our picture?' they said. 'Nobody ever took our picture.' They posed quite earnestly, then started to make faces.
The visitors asked what they would like for Christmas. 'A truck. A white doll.' The replies were easy. 'But how do you know Santa will come?' 'Because he always came before. Because he brings doll babies,' they said. 'What if he doesn't come? What would you think.' 'We wouldn't believe no more,' they said. They scowled. their anxiety made them conscious of the cold, of the fact that they had no coats.
'Why didya ask all them questions?' they said. Then, in unison, they beamed. 'We know who you are. You're Santa Claus' helper. You're coming to see if we believe. Right?' They scattered joyfully. They didn't wait for an answer." (The Arizona Republic, Phoenix, Sunday, December 3, 1972)
To truly be "like the most High," it would make sense that "Santa' (alias Baal, Nimrod, the Assyrian, Lucifer, and others) would be made to look like God." The Bible gives us a description of God, part of which is in the verses below:
"I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and 'the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire." (Daniel 7:9)
"And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters." (Revelation 1:12‑15)
Yes, secret Baal worshippers have foisted upon us their "Santa," their counterfeit "god," who appears to do "good," even as God, and they have presented him to us with white hair and beard, sparkling eyes, and a deep, low laugh. In our ignorance we have allowed our children to learn to revere their false "satan" (Baal) and become his "worshippers." Are "Santa" promoters ignorant? Or do they know what they are doing?
Do you need still more proof that "Christmas" had its origins in Baal worship? Read on. We will "take apart" more of this strange "festival
THE "CHRISTMAS TREE"
We have already seen the origin of the "tree" with Nimrod (Baal), which makes more significant the many times "green tree" is mentioned in the Bible in relation to heathen idol worship and heathen gods.
When Israel came into Canaan, they were ordered to destroy the heathen altars, groves, and graven images (Deuteronomy 7), then,
"Ye shall utterly destroy all the places wherein the nations which ye shall possess serve their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every GREEN TREE." (Deuteronomy 12:2)
Among the scores of places in the Old Testament where Israel was warned against Baal worship, or "the ways of the heathen," nine of them specifically mention serving their gods, or worshipping under "green trees." In most cases other terrible abominations are listed as accompanying these heathen practices, such as we read in Isaiah 57:3‑5:
"But draw near hither, ye sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore. Against whom do ye sport yourselves: Against whom make ye a wide mouth, and draw out the tongue? Are ye not children of transgression, a seed of falsehood, enflaming yourselves with idols UNDER EVERY GREEN TREE, slaying the children in the valleys under the clifts of the rocks?"
Today we slay the children in the murder mills of America (abortion clinics) and dump the bodies into the sewer systems. Except for the parts sold to the rich to prolong their life.
Green trees were of Baal worship, and Halley's Bible Handbook says of Baal worship:
"Priestesses were temple prostitutes. Sodomites were male temple prostitutes. The worship of Baal, Ashtoreth (his wife ‑ same as the "Madonna"), and other Canaanite gods consisted of the most extravagant orgies; their temples were centers of vice." (Halley's Bible Handbook, page 166, 1965 edition)
Now you may begin to see and understand more easily why the saloons, night clubs, and other places where adulterers, whores, homosexuals, and other blasphemers congregate, put up green trees at "Christmas."
Halley added information that showed "Baal‑rites" further consisted of "murdering their first‑born children as a sacrifice to these same gods," and their temples, upon excavation, were found to be full of images and carvings of sex organs and "pornographic" paraphernalia! (Religion of the Caanites, p. 167)
Idol worship under "green trees" is condemned in the following Scriptures ‑‑ please read them. (1 Kings 14:22‑23; 2 Kings 16:1‑4; 2 Kings 17:9‑10; Chronicles 28:4; Isaiah 57:3‑5 [quoted above]; Jeremiah 2:20; 3:6‑13; 17:1‑2; and Ezekiel 6:13)
There is a further condemnation of those who cut down a tree for any kind of worship service as we have previously shown. (Jeremiah 10:2‑8)
The tree was also used in ancient, pagan festivals to symbolize rebirth. A log (yule log) was burned to symbolize the death of the father‑god, and then a green tree was set upright to imply his reincarnation in his son. This was followed by placing gifts under the tree, in effect, "offering" the gifts to the god (idol) represented by the tree. Then, as in all pagan nations, the "sacrificed" gifts were distributed to the worshippers to consume. How many millions of families in Christendom perform this pagan "ritual" every winter at "Christmas!" May God open their blinded eyes!
For "Christians" who still may say, "Well, it is just a harmless custom, what can it hurt ‑ and besides it is fun," I shall only ask: How can performing the rituals of the heathen glorify Jesus Christ?
The writers of the New Testament warned Christians against partaking of things offered to idols in (Acts 15:29; 21:25; 1 Corinthians 8 [entire chapter]; 10:18‑21; 10:28; and Revelation 2:14, 20), which should be enough to make any believer stop and think. We shall end this part on the "tree" by quoting 1 Corinthians 10:20‑21:
"But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table and of the table of devils."
The "Christmas Tree" is but the modern version of the pagan custom of offering gifts to idols; it is of "the cup of devils." It is NOT CHRISTIAN.
THE THREE WISE MEN
In modern "Christmas" tableaus, or stories, we are often told of "the three wise men" who came to the "babe" in the manger bearing gifts. This is in spite of the simple truth that the Bible does not tell of such an event attending Jesus' birth. Not only is the number of wise men not stated in the Bible, the Bible says they came to Jesus in A HOUSE:
We know this because we are told in Matthew 2:1-11:
1). Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
2). Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.
3). When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. (Why was all of Jerusalem troubled with Herod? Because almost all of the people living in and around Jerusalem at that time in history were Jews)?
4). And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.
5). And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,
6). And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
7). Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, inquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.
8). And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.
9). When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.
10). When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.
11). And WHEN THEY (the wise men) WERE COME INTO THE HOUSE (they did not come to Christ while He was in the manger, they came to Him when He was in His house; or the house of Joseph His stepfather), they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
That their arrival was upwards of two years AFTER the birth of Jesus is evident from King Herod's actions after he had questioned them as to "what time the star appeared" (Verse 7). He desired the death of the Christ child, and we read he "sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, FROM TWO YEARS OLD AND UNDER, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men" (Verse 16)
Herod must have been convinced Jesus was possibly already two years old when the wise men arrived, otherwise the killing of two year olds would make no sense.
Also, in the more detailed story of Jesus' birth in Luke 2, we read of the angel, of the "heavenly host," of the shepherds, even the eighth day circumcision of the child (Verse 21), of both Simeon (Verses 25‑35) and Anna, the prophetess (Verses 36‑38), yet NO WORD of any wise men. Was it because they were NOT present at His birth, but came months, or years later?
With so plain an account, why do ministers still accept three wise men at the stable? Is it because the birth of the Babylonian Messiah, the false Christ, was attended by the priests of Baal, while the birth of the true Messiah was waited upon by NO religious persons? Truly the manger scene as we see it at "Christmas" can have no other origin but in Baal worship.
Candles and candlesticks are mentioned a number of times in Scripture in relation to God, but there is also the "candle of the wicked" which is to be put out. (Job 21:17; Proverbs 24:20) In Jeremiah 25, God promises to take from Babylon, "the light of the candle" (Verse 10), and in Revelation 18:23, as the destruction of prophetic BABYLON THE GREAT, MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH is complete, we read, "And the light of A CANDLE shall shine no more at all in thee." The burning of candles in a worship service is a pagan, and a Roman Catholic ritual. It is NOT Christian.
There is no instruction in the Bible for the mutual exchange of gifts among believers, FOR ANY REASON, yet all of the pagan, mid‑winter "festivals" include gift exchanging. It seems significant that the only mention of such a time in the Holy Word is in the Apocalyptic story of the two witnesses of God being killed, their deaths seeming to bring such joy to the ungodly that we read,
"And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another." (Revelation 11:10)
Isn't it strange that the actions of the ungodly at the death of God's prophets IS IDENTICAL TO THE ACTIONS OF "CHRISTMAS" CELEBRANTS? Not really, when you realize that the hidden promoters of "Christmas" rituals are antichrists.
HAM DINNER FOR CHRISTMAS
In spite of the very plain order in God's Law that we are not to eat swine (pig), "And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcass shall ye not touch; he is unclean to you," (Leviticus 11:7‑8) most Christians eat it all of the time, and especially make a great show of having their "Christmas Ham" on December 25th. They may not know that in Egyptian and Greek worship, the son of the "mother‑god" was believed killed by a wild boar which was then killed by the "mother‑god" prior to the "resurrection" of her son. In commoration of this act the worshippers killed and offered as a sacrifice a pig which was then eaten by the "celebrants!"
Diana (mentioned in Acts 19) was often portrayed with a dead boar or boar's head, and in many pictures of that period, the Roman Emperor Trajan is shown burning incense to Diana while the boar's head hangs on a tree.
For over 3,000 years, it has been common among the pagans to kill and eat a pig at their winter festival of the return of the sun (late December). In Rome, it was called "the feast of Saturn" and the boar was killed as a sacrifice to Saturn. The entire animal was cooked, often served with an apple or pomegranate in its mouth. The custom still prevails in England and parts of Europe. In America, almost every minister promotes the eating of swine's flesh by his congregation.
THE CHRISTMAS GOOSE
In Egypt a favorite offering to Osiris was a goose, offered at any time, but when offered in the dead of winter, the goose was then eaten.
In Rome, Juvenal writes, "that Osiris, if offended, could be pacified only by a large goose and a thin cake." The think cake later became the "wafer" used in the Roman Catholic Sacrament. Historians record that one of the night attacks by the Gauls on Rome was defeated when the geese kept in the temple of Jupiter aroused the Roman soldiers with their cackling.
In India, they have the "Brahmany goose," sacred to Brahma. In Babylon, the goose was offered as a sacrifice by the priests of Baal. Wilkinson (Egyptians, Vol. V, p. 227), states that ancient Egyptian heiroglyphics indicate the goose symbolized a son, giving itself up in sacrifice that the family might be preserved. (That this is from Baal worship where the firstborn son was sacrificed to Baal is probable ‑ see Halley's Bible Handbook on "Religion of the Canaanites").
It seems that sacrifices to false gods were usually of unclean species. The goose is unclean, being classified with the swan and the pelican of (Leviticus 11:18), but then, so is everything else about "Christmas!"
There are many other things I could write about, but the story is almost too terrible to continue ‑ how most Christendom, even professing Christians, have been deceived by the forces of darkness into acting out the rituals of Baal worship which are an abomination to our God.
Most astonishing is the almost universal rejection of these truths about the pagan origin of "Christmas" by the men in the Church pulpits. Most ignore or ridicule such information. Could the reason be that many are not true followers of Jesus Christ, but instead are secret priests of the false messiah of Babylon and they only profess to be Christians so they can get in the Church pulpits and lead God's sheep into the "ways of Baal worship?"
Jesus warned that "many shall come in My name, saying I am Christ [actually saying that Jesus is the Christ]; and shall deceive many." (Matthew 24:5) In Matthew 7:15 Jesus said, "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing [come professing to be Christians], but inwardly they are ravening wolves."
Paul voiced a similar warning:
"For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock" (Acts 20:29)
It is true, that if we will not hold fast to Bible Truth, we shall be deceived by men who claim to be Christians, yes, even ministers. May God grant that this presentation on "Christmas" be used to enlighten and warn Christ's sheep, in Jesus' name.
Many thanks to Pastors Sheldon Emry and Ralph Woodrow, without who's help this presentation would not have been possible.
The need for Christians, old and young alike, who would be faithful in Christ, is to study the Bible, the Holy Word of God, Pray for guidance and obey the True God of Israel. To that end, below are some very pertinent instructions from God. Read them, heed them, and then turn and read more in God's Wonderful Book which He has so graciously given to the children of men, that we all might, IN TRUTH, WORSHIP HIM.
"Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil." (Ecclesiastes 12:13‑14)
"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad." (2 Corinthians 5:10)
"Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty." (2 Corinthians 6:14‑18)
"Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God." (2 Corinthians 7:1)
"Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily." (Colossians 2:8‑9)
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth." (1 John 2:15‑21)
"Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds." (2 John 8‑11)
"And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness. And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life. Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen." (1 John 5:19‑21)