For those who do not observe Christmas, the following letter might ring true. We at Blow the Trumpet received it from a visitor to our web site. Suffice it to say he was livid at our approach toward Christmas and he made that fact abundantly clear. Below are his comments and our response.
“You preachers of error and false religion on this site just seem to want to attack any expressions of faith that are different than yours. How can you condemn those who want to celebrate the INCARNATION of the Son of God into the world—the one who laid down His Glory for a time, to take on the SINS of the whole world? He who walks with the wise grows wise, but the companion of fools suffers harm... I walk the walls watching out for the little ones you so viciously prey on.
Our purpose for writing is to respond to a post you submitted regarding Blow the Trumpet and its views on Christmas. You characterized them as the product of “false religion.” It is interesting that when describing the beauty of Christmas you also characterized the Messiah as one “who laid down His Glory” for a time. We at Blow the Trumpet agree with you on this point-Jesus did divest himself of His glory when He came to earth as a man.
However, God’s word says something else that speaks volumes about His position on virtually every popular holiday embraced by the vast majority of professing Christians today. The Great Creator of Heaven and Earth thunders out that He will NOT share His glory with idols (Isa. 42:8). The point He is making is that no vestige of paganism is to be used in the worship of the one True and Perfect God. This Great Creator so hated pagan religions that He specifically instructed ancient Israel to utterly destroy every vestige of these false beliefs when they entered the land Canaan. Notice what He said.
“But you shall destroy their altars, break their images, and cut down their groves” (Ex 34:13)
“But thus shall you deal with them; ye shall destroy their altars, and break down their images, and cut down their groves, and burn their graven images with fire.” ( Dt. 7:5 )
“And you shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and you shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of that place.” (Dt.12:3)
However, God wasn’t finished warning the Israelites about tampering with false religions. He even commanded them to refrain from borrowing any pagan customs and using them when worshipping Him.
"Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods. What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it." (Dt. 12:30-32)
Tragically, this is exactly what millions of professing Christians today do every year during festivals like Christmas. Furthermore, they are convinced that God accepts this gesture. If you don’t believe this claim, consider Christmas. This festival is the highlight of the Christian calendar. But is it really Christian at all? The fact of the matter is that there isn’t a shred of Biblical Christianity in it and there never was. Christmas has its roots in false religions. If you doubt this claim, consider just a few quotes regarding the link between Christmas and ancient pagan cultures:
“...the Christmas festival...is a gradual evolution from times that long antedated the Christian period... It was over laid upon heathen festivals, and many of its observances are only adaptations of pagan to Christian Ceremonies.” (The Story of Santa Klaus p. 58)
“Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the Church...the first evidence of the feast is from Egypt... Pagan customs centering around the January calends gravitated to Christmas.” (The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1911 edition)
“December 25 is referred to in documents as Christmas day in A.D. 324 for the first time. Under the Roman emperor Justinian [in the 500's] it was recognized as an official holiday. An old Roman festival played a major part in the choice of this particular day. December 25 in ancient Rome was the ‘Dies Natali Invictus,’ ‘the birthday of the unconquered,’ the day of the winter solstice and at the same time, in Rome, the last day of the Saturnalia, which had long since degenerated into a week of unbridled carnival...” (The Bible as History p. 331 Werner Keller)
The Encyclopedia Britannica also adds some interesting insights with respect to the December 25th celebration of Christmas. Not only did the day coincide with the Roman celebration of Saturnalia, but other pagan deities are directly connected to this date.
“...In the Roman world, the Saturnalia was a time of merrymaking and exchanging of gifts. December 25th was also regarded as the birth date of the Iranian Mystery god, Mithra, the Sun of Righteousness. On the Roman New Year houses were decorated with greenery and lights and gifts were given to children. To these observances were added the German and Celtic Yule rites...Food and good fellowship, the Yule log and Yule cakes, greenery and fir tree, gifts and greetings all commemorated different aspects of this festive season. Fires and lights, symbols of warmth and lasting life have always been associated with the winter festival, both pagan and Christian.” (Vol. II, 1973)
Today almost every Christmas-keeping pastor will concede that the symbols associated with this day come straight from traditions practiced by cultures that didn’t have a clue who the true God was. Despite this fact, they continue to embrace these customs. Our question is: WHY?
As harsh as our words may sound, we at Blow the Trumpet are convinced that most professing Christians today are betting their faith that God has somehow had a change of heart regarding borrowing pagan traditions. They are in effect wagering that He no longer cares how He is worshipped as long as His people love Him in their heart. We at Blow the Trumpet believe this is a grave mistake and that it actually contradicts everything God is. The Bible characterizes God as immutable (Jas.1:17). In other words He doesn’t change. Therefore, what He hated in the Old Testament, He most certainly would hate in the New Testament. Everything in the scriptures declares that God is not the architect of a day that confiscates its symbols from paganism. No matter how pleasant people think Christmas is, it simply doesn’t reconcile with the God of the Bible. This being the case, who is the architect of such a day?
Here is an interesting, but for many, a very disturbing thought. The Bible reveals that Satan the devil has deceived the whole world (Rev.12:9). He does so by transforming himself into an angel of light (2 Cor. 11:14). In other words, he makes things that are very evil seem to be very good. The point here is that Satan doesn’t wear a black hat. He doesn’t look like a bad guy. As a matter of fact Satan wears a white hat and looks very much like a good guy. It is interesting that when recording the book of Revelation John was inspired to describe the first horseman of the apocalypse (false religions) as riding a white horse (Rev.6:2). Even the false prophet has the appearance of a lamb (Rev. 13:11). Clearly religious deception doesn’t look deceiving. It looks true, just like the devil who creates it. Nothing more graphically illustrates this fact than the festivals he inspired. That’s right! Satan himself is the most logical being in the universe to have inspired Christmas. This is because it is based almost totally on a lie. And mankind has bought that lie hook, line, and sinker. Consider how the devil sees what millions of people do every December. He might very well describe it like this:
“I have an idea. Watch what I will do to this people. I will create a feast that will absolutely captivate them. It will have something for everybody. Atheists will love it. Agnostics will love it. Hardened criminals will love it. Prostitutes and priests will love it. And most of all children will love this feast. They are so gullible that I will convince them to cut a tree out of the forest, then bring it into their home and display it in a very prominent place. The whole family will decorate it with lights and various ornaments. It will be so festive! They will then put presents under the tree and have their children kneel before it as they open each one. Perhaps they will even sing “O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree, how lovely are thy branches.”
"Meanwhile, parents will tell their children about a magical man who presides over this wonderful day. But what is this man to be like? Let’s see. WOW! I have it! I will make him like God. You don’t believe me. Just watch. The Bible says that God resides in the north (Job 37:22, Isa. 14:13). Therefore I will make the north this magic man’s home. And the Bible describes the Messiah as having white hair (Rev. 1:14) and a vesture dipped in blood (Rev. 19:13). Therefore this man will have white hair and a red coat. Ah, but there is more! God desires His people to pray, so I will have this man invite people to make requests of him too. They can seek him out in the open market or even write to him. All the children will do it."
"Now have I left anything out? Oh yes! God has angels. Therefore, I will give this man elves. They will do his beckoning. But what shall I call this man? I have it! I will call him by my name. I will call him Satan. No, that’s too obvious. Hmmm, what can I call him? Do you have any ideas? And how shall he appear in the homes of these religious people when he brings his gifts? Maybe he should descend into fire. Yes! That’s it. He will descend into fire."
"Finally, I will persuade these people that the true God loves to be worshipped this way. And they will believe me. Why? Because I will fill this day with the prettiest music, the brightest colors, the best food, and of course all those presents. And I will have their pastors claim that this day honors the birth of God’s Son. Never mind that Jesus wasn’t born anywhere close to this day. And never mind that God said “Learn not the way of the heathen” (Jer. 10:2). And I will create stories that portray anyone who doesn’t keep this day as a scrooge—a valueless soul. And when I am finished God himself will know who these people and their children truly adore—who their lord really is. After all, if God really cares how He is worshipped then they can worship me. I don’t care at all."
This example may be a very blunt portrayal of a day you sincerely love. But that day is not what you assume it to be. It is dangerous—very dangerous. It contradicts God and everything He represents. Furthermore, the day is coming when this festival will be no more. For when Jesus Christ returns to this earth and subdues the nations, He will begin right where He told ancient Israel to begin. He will lay waste to every vestige of paganism. In its place will be truth—pure unadulterated truth.
Finally, it is not our intent to mock Christmas. On the contrary, we fear this day and how it has so horribly contaminated the true faith. Additionally, we are not attacking the birth of the Savior of the world. Nor are we attacking His sacrifice. Our words are intended to stand as an indictment against a godless myth masquerading as truth. We do so because we take God at His word when He said to “Learn not the way of the heathen.” We sincerely appeal to you to do the same.
Blow the Trumpet