For many members of the Lord’s church,
Christmas once meant decorated trees, colorfully wrapped gifts and Santa
Clauses all around — but definitely no focus on the birth of Christ.
In recent years many congregations have
become much more willing to reflect on the story of Jesus' birth at a time when
the world is focused on him.I agree
that this can be a very effective time of the year to teach The Truth about
Christianity because minds tend to turn to the subject of Jesus.It is never wrong to think of His Birth, for
it is the birth of our Savior.There is
nothing wrong, in teaching about Christ, with starting at His Birth because it
is the miraculous fulfillment of prophecy regarding Our Savior.However, celebrating the birth of Jesus
Christ is not taught anywhere in the Bible. Furthermore, the Bible does not
indicate when Jesus was born.The
observance of Christmas is not of divine appointment, nor is it of New
Testament origin. The day of Christ’s birth cannot be ascertained from the New Testament,
or, indeed, from any other source. The
Bible does not authorize the religious observance of Christmas with its
emphasis on the birth or nativity of Jesus Christ.
Many religious people are adamant about
“putting Christ back in Christmas” and insist that “Jesus is the Reason for the
Season.” With these slogans, they hope to remind people that Christmas is a
“Christian” holiday, and that without Christ, there would be no Christmas in
the first place. They speak out of their
The so-called Christmas festival was
introduced by the Roman Catholic Church in the middle of the fourth century to
encourage a common religious festival for “christians” and Pagans. As
such, Christmas is over three hundred years too young to be associated with the
church about which we read in the New Testament. Besides its absence from the
pages of inspiration, Christmas owes its origin to man and not God. God never
authorized a religious observance called Christmas.
Those who conscientiously endeavor to
practice book-chapter-and-verse Christianity will neither approve nor practice
a religious festival not authorized by God's Word, including Christmas. We are
bound to seek authority for everything we do religiously. "And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the
Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him" (Colossians 3:17).
The expression, "in the name of the
Lord Jesus" means by the authority of. There is no biblical authority for the
religious observance of Christmas.
For those who, while not conforming to
Christmas as a “Celebration of Christ’s Birth,” feel we should take advantage
of the “Reason for the Season” thought process to teach those about Christ, we
need to be sure that, as we teach, those being taught understand the need for
authority in what we do.My brother,
Philip, correctly reasoned regarding equating Christ’s birth with Christmas by
one grants some of these contentions, how does he then assert the need for
Biblical authority on such matters as the unscriptural nature of mechanical
instrumental religious music? Rather than ‘It seems to me’ should we not have a
‘thus saith the Lord’ for those matters we practice in the name of religion?
Mere pragmatism has been used to countenance some fairly unsavory practices.
Had the Lord wished His ‘birthday’ to be given a ‘mass’ He would have ordained
it just as He did the memory of His death in the Lord’s supper. That Jehovah
ordained various feasts and festivals in the Mosaic period and only specified
the Lord’s supper in the new covenant ‘seems to me’ to teach us a lesson about
letting the Lord designate what He wants to happen in our worship and practice.
To ‘fill in the blanks’ where the Lord was silent smacks of a presumptuousness
that the Lord abhors.”
There is not the slightest evidence
that there is any authorization for creating a sacred celebration of the birth
of Christ. There is no instruction within the New Testament to ceremonially
honor the Savior’s birth, and there is no indication that the Christians of the
apostolic age did so.
His birth was the miraculous
fulfillment of prophecy, but if he had not lived a sinless life, been
completely obedient to The Father (to the point of death), and arose from the
dead, His birth would not mean much.
The celebration of our remembrance of
Christ has been designated for us by Jesus himself.
22:17-20 – Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, “Take this and
divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of
the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them,
saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of
Me.”Likewise He also took the cup after
supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for
God's Truth, as he provides it to us,
is more than sufficient to convict the heart without us making up ceremonies or
conforming to worldly "celebrations" to try and find an "entry
point" to teach others.
For those who think that Christians
should never celebrate Christmas, I believe you are wrong.Christians may celebrate the “Christmas”
season in a non-religious way, with family get-togethers, the exchanging of
gifts, the decoration of homes, etc. The holiday season is a long-standing
tradition in this country, and for millions of people, the customary
celebration exists without the cluttering of religious symbolism.
Christians ought to observe some clear
distinctions between religious Christmas and secular Christmas. We should use
caution regarding how and where we practice secular Christmas or otherwise
enjoy our national, legal holiday.
From a purely biblical perspective,
religious Christmas has no place in our religious assemblies or in our homes. Religious Christmas does not belong in our
assemblies because it is not authorized! Secular Christmas does not belong in our
assemblies because it is not authorized! We need to recognize as a matter of judgment
the degree to which secular Christmas and national holidays may be reflected in
our homes and social interaction in the family of God. Mankind is given to
extremes left and right, much and little, both of which are usually contrary to
the will of God.