As a Christian Pastor, I take my privilege very seriously! I stand on the truth, “It was for freedom that Christ set us free.” And, I would never lead the people in my charge into paganism…or embracing it in any form.
With that in mind, I have been very troubled for the past several years over the celebration of Christmas in my church. Some may be surprised at this statement, but it’s been an inner turmoil for me….UNTIL NOW!
I’ve read and prayed and read some more. The internet is replete with strong denunciations of true Christians celebrating Christmas. My heart has cried out, “What do I do?” You see, this isn’t simply a matter of intellectual doctrinal dispute or opinion for me. If it’s observance is anathema to my Heavenly Father is as true as myriads of Anti-Christmas proclaimers declare, then I and the people I am leading are in great danger from the wrath of God in this life, and maybe even hell-fire in the ages to come.
However, with sincere heart I’ve continued to seek His Wisdom on this most important issue!
I’ve come to the position that many sincere worshipers of God are drawing fear-laden, freedom-binding conclusions based on the same spirit as the “witch hunt” mentality.
I will list a few reasons I’ve come to that conclusion here. But, if you’d like a more in depth examination, I’m posting a link at the end of this post.
Why I Believe You Can Celebrate “Christmas” With Your Church And Family And Not Be Afraid You Are Embracing Paganism:
Here are only a few of the reasons I have come to my conclusion and hope you will have the freedom to do so, as well (In no particular order of importance):
- I’m not afraid of the word, “Pagan,” from what it originally meant. I do NOT embrace doctrines that are common to current “religious” expressions of paganism. (And btw there are as many slices of paganism as there are Christian denominations).
In it’s earliest usage (the time all anti-Christmas folks refer to), anyone was a “pagan” who was folk-sy, outdoor-sy, and uneducated. A common contemporary term that is very similar is “red neck.”Another term that has often been used in the same breath is “heretic.” A heretic was an still is someone who has taken a basic truth to an extreme, and beyond a truthful biblical conclusion. However, it is also used by many who stand on opposite sides of what they consider to be basic biblical conclusion. Who’s the heretic? Well, the one who is on the other side of the line I’ve drawn, of course! <—- (Sarcasm, in case you missed it.)I identify with many Charismatic or Pentecostal beliefs regarding the current practice of God’s gifts. A very influential religious leader has assigned me to hell-flames. I have no doubt this leader is a sincere follower of Christ, but he has openly stated that Charismatics and Pentecostals are not true Christians.
I’ve also been labeled “New Age” because I believe that dreams can still be interpreted, among other things that are contemporary operations of the Holy Spirit’s gifts. Do I believe the core teaching of “New Age?” NO. ABSOLUTELY NOT! (But, the why is for another article.
The point is that it’s easy to throw around terms like “new age,” “gnostic,” “mysticism,” and “heretic.” They illicit strong reactions amongst sincere people. But, the term easily applied does not mean that well informed truth is being told. Saying something is so, doesn’t make it so! And just because it’s found on the internet doesn’t make it so, either! (Internet buyer beware!
- I Believe that “Sunday School” is a good thing for children. Your church may call it something different like, “Children’s Church,” et al, but the point is the same.One of the common arguments against Christmas is that it isn’t found in the Scriptures. Well, guess what? Neither is Sunday School. It originally came into existence when some churches wanted to educate poor children who were working on the farms and unable to attend school. These churches taught basic education as well as took the opportunity to also teach the Scriptures.Yet, I have not found one article condemning Sunday School using the “not in Scripture” argument. Oh, and btw…to be consistent…they should because, you see, Sunday is the title given to that day of the week to honor the Roman Sun God. In fact all the days of the week are names that honor different “deities.” Inconsistency Alert!
3. There is a huge amount of speculation to the majority of the claims that are made
about medieval times. I’m not denying that some pretty immoral, non God-honoring stuff
went on in that era. However, much of the “it’s pagan” argument is based on stuff that can’t
be anything but speculation and outright error. (You can read much greater researched
detail in the link below)
4. I admire the early church for declaring thier honor to the true Son of God by openly
going “counter culture” to a major day of cultural debauchery as a worship of the
birthday of their “sun god.” I think that probably took good old fashioned guts! Then
again, I prefer to look at positive potential rather than seeing the “evil” in everything.
Everything that I consider “pagan heresy.”
This is a time when I am honoring the birth of Jesus. I know it’s not the real date. I am aware of all the cries and screams that it’s pagan. It’s not to me, and nobody has proven to me that God is angry. In fact, I think there’s a better chance of Him being angry with those who have made countless people fearful for celebrating the Christmas season. I’m focused on making Jesus the reason for the season for my friends, family, and myself! I hope you will, too!
Blessed Christmas To You!