Should Not The Redeemer Of All Men Have The Right To Be Followed In How He Purposes His Birth To Be Celebrated?
Christmas: A “holiday” (Supposed holy day) invented by the Roman Church, but in no sense is the observance of it commanded in the Scriptures, nor do the Scriptures set the example of the people of faith celebrating such a “holiday”. It is a celebration where ancient pagan ideas, values, and symbolism are mixed with Christian truth, and there is zero Scripture compulsion to celebrate it.
Historical documents, as well as the New Testament Scriptures show the early Church celebrating the Festivals of Yehovah, but there is no mention of them celebrating “Christmas”. Further, December 25th is very conclusively not the birthday of Yeshua. Yeshua, who is God Almighty tabernacle-ing among men, was born on the 15th day of the 7th month of the Creator’s calendar, in the month the Jews refer to as Tishri. This day is the high Sabbath of the Festival of Tabernacles, and most often falls in the month we call September. With the advancement of modern computers, events in times past can be extremely accurately established, verifying the validity of this statement. Yeshua, was born nowhere near December 25th. Rather, that date has been since ancient times recognized as the supposed birth date of several false gods, all having their roots in ancient paganism that started at the time of the Tower of Babel.
The celebration of Christmas is a participation in both idolatry and confusion. It is idolatry in that many people worship the day (season) itself with its numerous and varied customs, and pay little or respect for the ONE whom the “holiday” is supposed to be about. It is also a point of confusion because Yehovah, the Eternal God, never commanded that the birth of Yeshua be celebrated in such fashion.
The bottom line is that Christmas is at best a distraction from the Biblical commandment to celebrate the Festivals of Yehovah, and most expressly in December the Festival of Dedication. The Festivals of Yehovah are 100% Yeshua centered, having zero pagan roots, and are commanded by, and exemplified in the Scripture. The celebration of Christmas with it many traditions such as: Santa Claus and his reindeer, stockings hung for Santa to fill, the giving of gifts on this day, Frosty the snowman, the white Christmas, the cutting of an evergreen tree and decorating it will tinsel and ornaments. etc, all have their origins in paganism or fantasy. I ask you, do you believe that the disciples that walked with Yeshua would have anything to do with the varied elements of Christmas that I have mentioned? No, I do not believe so, and He is why!
Because, like Yeshua, their faith was Torah based
The prophet Jeremiah said, “This is what the Lord (Yehovah) says: “Do not learn the ways of the nations or be terrified by signs in the heavens, though the nations are terrified by them. For the practices of the peoples are worthless; they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel. They adorn it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so it will not totter.” (Jer. 10: 2-4 NIV)
Many ask, does it really matter if I celebrate Christmas with it many un-Biblical traditions? Moses, the servant of Yehovah said this, “Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, (The way of the unbeliever who does not obey God’s laws) 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 (Yehovah) 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. (Disobedience to Yehovah’s laws lead to every sort of perversion, such as the perversion of abortion, where people sacrifice their children to the god of self-indulgence. Sin (which is the transgression God’s law, 1 John 3:4) may start small, but it will grow big) What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.” (Deut. 12:30-32 KJV) Dear Reader: In order for you, or anyone to celebrate Christmas, you have to add to God’s word, for He did not command the faithful to participate in such a celebration.
If we will not harden our hearts, but rather lend our hearts to please God, then we will most gladly receive the word of this exhortation and consider our ways in the light of His word and give ourselves to obedience to God’s word.
A Winter Festival. The Festival of Dedication, which is called Hanukkah (Hanukkah means dedication) by the Jews is also referred to as the Festival of Lights. Both titles are very basic to the meaning of the festival. Moses the servant of Yehovah (The eternal name of God, pronounced YeHoVah) did not list this festival along with the others in Leviticus chapter 23, but it has been practiced by the Jews since approximately 168 BC, and was kept by Messiah Himself. (John 10:22) The Festival of Dedication possesses a two-fold expression. But to be able to obtain an understanding of these expressions it is necessary for one to be alert to the circumstances behind how the Festival of Dedication was originally begun. And the only way that that is possible is by the reading of the books of 1 and 2nd Maccabees, as is found in the Apocrypha. (The apocrypha is a selection of books which were published in the original 1611 King James Bible. These apocryphal books were positioned between the Old and New Testament. (it also contained maps and geneologies) The apocrypha was a part of the KJV for 274 years until being removed in 1885 A.D.. A portion of these books were called deuterocanonical books by some entities, such as the Catholic church. Many claim the apocrypha should never have been included in the first place, raising doubt about its validity and believing it was not God-inspired (for instance, a reference about what some call magic seems inconsistent with the rest of the Bible: Tobit chapter 6, verses 5-8). Others believe it is valid, and that it should never have been removed- especially because it was considered part of the Bible for nearly 2,000 years before it was recently removed a little more than 100 years ago.)
Personal Judgment Concerning The Apocrypha
I do not consider myself a scholar in respect to the Apocrypha. However, I do recognize the grace of God in my life which has caused His word to be greatly opened to me, and caused me to possess the gift of discerning of spirits. In my reading of the Apocrypha I have seen no contradiction of Biblical truth. The particular incident mentioned above in the previous paragraph, as is spoken of in Tobit chapter 6: 5-8, in my mind is no different than cures that Messiah, some of His apostles, and “Old Testament” prophets used in bringing about healings. (Lk. 8:43-48, Johns 9:6, Acts 5:15, Acts 19: 11-12, 2 Kings 2:19, Is. 38:1-21) I believe the books of the Apocrypha to be inspired and accurate, and that they should be received as the rest of the Scripture, and thus are profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.
The books of 1 and 2nd Maccabees, as is found in the Apocrypha, contain the documentation establishing the validity of the history, and the interpretation of the attitudes and motivation of the heart possessed by the Jewish faithful (the household of faith in the world that that time) which brought about the declaration of the Festival of Dedication. (Hanukkah)
In the year 334 BC, Alexander the Great invaded the Persian kingdom and eventually over threw it. In the year 326 BC he invaded India, but was eventually forced to turn back at the demand of his troops. As a young man, in the year 323 BC Alexander died being overcome by a disease. In the years following his death, a series of civil wars tore his empire apart resulting in several states governed by his four surviving generals which began to rule the empires of Egypt, Assyria, Turkey and Greece. Antiochus Epiphanes became the head of the Syrian portion of Alexander the Great’s divided Grecian Empire. He was a devilish and cruel man who showed himself to be a type of anti-Messiah.
In approximately 168 BC, after doing battle in Egypt he turned his wrath against Judah and Jerusalem. He killed over eighty thousand men, women, and children, and sold forty thousand into slavery. (2 Macc. 5: 5-14) The holy place was robbed of its treasures, and the temple was dedicated to the god-Jupiter Olympus. The temple was defiled by offering a sow upon the altar, and scattering its juices over all the sanctuary and vessels. In doing these atrocities he fulfilled the words of the prophet Daniel, and became in his time the abomination that brought desolation. (Daniel 8: 6-15) He substituted the Jewish festivals with the drunken revelry of Bacchanalia forcing the Jews to worship Bacchus, the god of pleasure and wine. The licentious festival of Saturnalia, and the worship of Saturn was also enforced upon the inhabitants of Jewry. He forbade the reading of the Holy Scriptures and the tradition of circumcision. Throwing two mothers with their infants headlong off the highest wall in Jerusalem Antiochus killed them, in that they had circumcised their children in defiance of his law. He also cut out the tongues of a mother’s seven sons, and after that, had each of them roasted alive on a flat iron, (2 Macc. 7:1-42) then the mother herself was murdered. A detailed description of the violent atrocities and murder of thousands of Jews by Antiochus while marching through Judea is found in 1 Maccabees 1:20-28, 2 Maccabees 5:11- 2, and 2 Maccabees 7:42.
However, Antiochus Epiphanes’ bide to paganize the people of faith met resistance. This resistance was manned by faithful Jews who were willing to risk all, even unto death rather than to forsake their faith by denying the true worship instructed in the Torah. This resistance was at first led by Mattathias who was a valiant priest in Israel who dwelt in a village called Modin, whose spirit was greatly aroused to defend the honor of Yehovah when he saw the desecration of Jerusalem and Judah. Representatives of Antiochus Epiphanes were sent to Mattathias’ village to offer them terms of peace if they would deny their faith and conform to the paganistic forms of worship demanded by the king. Mattathias being filled with rage took a sword in his hand and killed a fellow Israelite who was offering contrary to the Torah in honor of the king’s command. Mattathias also killed the king’s representative. Thus, began a revolt against the rule of Antiochus Epiphanes which later was led by Judas, one of the sons of Mattathias. By Yehovah’s empowerment, and at the cost of many of their lives the Jews were eventually able to re-conquer Jerusalem, cleansing the Temple, rededicating its altar, and its vessels to the worship of Yehovah. After which, the Jews noting the great deliverance of Yehovah, vowed to henceforth forever to celebrate an eight-day festival in honor of overcoming Antiochus Epiphanes and his attempt to paganize the worship of Yehovah. (1 Mac. 4:59)
From that time on faithful Jews have celebrated the Festival of Dedication as an expression that the faith of Yehovah must be kept pure from paganism of every sort. It is to this very end that true Believers today celebrate the Festival of Dedication, to mark our struggle to deliver ourselves from the very many forms of paganistic influence (The spirit of Babylon) that the great portion of all that is called Christian has, which in most cases were inadvertently adopted (Mainly via the Roman Church) through the centuries. Also called the Festival of Lights, Hanukkah is a celebration for Believers of the Light of the World (Messiah) coming into our lives and translating us from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of light, and working in us to renew our understanding of what it means to worship in Spirit and in Truth. (John 4: 21-24) Thus forsaking every paganistic practice, no matter how “religious” in nature, or how seemingly wise it may be held in our modern secularist society, to conform our faith to the dictates of the Torah, which practice is exemplified by the life and practice of our lord Yeshua.
The Festival of Dedication/Festival of Light, is a time for Believers to soberly recognize that when Yeshua was upon the earth, He alone could open the eyes of one born blind. Which miracle He performed during the time of the festival of Light. (John chapter 9) In like manner, He alone can heal the blindness of our hearts, thereby causing the entrance of the light of understanding concerning Himself and His kingdom, and an understanding that the end time Anti-Messiah is soon to be revealed in the world. This man will at first come across as wise, offering peace and prosperity to the peoples of the world, but as Antiochus Epiphanes did in his realm - in his generation, the end time anti-Messiah will be shown to exceedingly persecute all who do not conform themselves to his un-godly dictations, for he will seek to paganize the faithful.
He will be set himself up as God, and demand to be worshipped as such. (2 Thes. 1:7-12, 2 Thes. 2: 1-12, Dan. 7:8-28, Dan. 8:15-27) Many Believers will die at his hand, but in due time the Messiah will appear and destroy both him and his armies, and bring deliverance and glory to all who have held completely to the true faith of Yeshua. (Rev. 19:11-21, 2 Thes. 1:7-11)
An American Watchman,
Gregory A DeHart
To get more out of this article please consider:
John 8:12-John 10:42, Daniel 7:15-28, Rev. 12:7- Rev. 14:20, Rev. 18:4, Rev. 19:1—Rev. 20:15, Jo. 12:1, Jo. 9:39, John 1:9