In the early times, several Christians who knew the truth of the gospel opposed the introduction of Christmas, but, what influence could their voice had possibly exerted against that of great, awesome Emperor Constantine and the Papacy? (Remember the fearsome period of Inquisition, and how the late Pope John Paul 11 had to apologise for the countless atrocities and murders committed against those who hard dared to oppose the contamination of Christianity with heathen practices such as Christmas!) However, the oppositions did not die, but continued to linger, until it gathered great force again. In an article entitled, “Cosmic Christmas: Rebirth of the Sun God,” Barbara Aho reports: “In the fourth century, the Emperor Constantine designated December 25, the birthday of the Roman Sun-god Mithra, as the birthday of Jesus Christ, thereby placing the true Saviour among the pantheon of Roman gods. Constantine succeeded in drawing Christians into the pagan celebrations of Rome, which procured the religious unity needed for the success of the Holy Roman Empire. The empire dominated the world for 1,200 years until the 16th century, when the Protestant Reformers led 2/3 of Europe to break away with the Roman Catholic Church and discontinued the celebration of Christmas by reason of its pagan character. The Puritans who controlled the English Parliament in 1644 declared that no observation of Christmas was permitted, calling it ‘The Profane Man’s Ranting Day.'”
In fact, as recently as 1871, the famous preacher, C.H. Spurgeon, declared: “we have no superstitious regard for times and seasons. Certainly, we do not believe in the present ecclesiastical arrangement called Christmas.” This would serve to show that it has not been long before Christmas began to gain wider acceptance today. And this should be understandable, given the depreciation that has set in as a result of people’s l growing love for pomp and revelry.
A 1983 article in the USA Today newspaper reports as follows: “A broad element of English Christianity still considered Christmas celebration a pagan blasphemy. The Puritans, Baptists, Quakers, Presbyterians, Calvinists and other denominations brought this opposition to early New England and strong opposition to the holiday lasted in America until the middle of the 18th century.” It was not until much later, when depreciation, backsliding and compromise began to ravage protestant and even Pentecostal circles that people whose forbears had opposed this heathen feast began to return to it again.
But the depreciation is not limited to the re-adoption of Christmas. Today we hear of gay marriages, endorsement of divorce and re-marriage by churches, and several other very unchristian practices. These days some women even come to church services and even minister from pulpits dressed like prostitutes, seducing men and making them to sin while the so-called services are on, while some of the men dress like fresh escapees from lunatic asylums. Of recent, some so called Pentecostal pastors have begun donning Roman priestly robes, complete with skull caps and the mitre! Just for them to be addressed as Bishops! What a horrible period of great apostasy! (Matthew 24:12)
But God has long warned us. In Jeremiah 10:2-4, we are told: “Thus saith the Lord, learn not the way of the heathen; and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain. For one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workmen, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers that it move not.”
Christmas has no Scriptural backing. The Apostles did not observe it. It is a product of a heinous compromise. Indeed, no matter the good intentions that led to this unholy marriage that produced Christmas, it is still a heathen feast, in honour of the devil. When Aaron made the golden calf for the Israelites at Sinai in the Wilderness, he still proclaimed the celebration that attended its inauguration the “feast of the Lord.” (Exodus 32:5). Yet this did not prevent the wrath of God from falling upon them. The name Jeroboam, the son of the Nebat, is always accompanied with the statement, “the man who made Israel to sin,” each time it is mentioned in the Bible. The Bible said he “ordained a feast in the eight month. like unto the feast in Judah.” (I Kings 12: 32), when he wanted to prevent the Israelites from rebelling against his kingship. When the Israeli Kingdom was divided and the larger part was given to him, he had thought that if the people continued to go to Judah for worship, they might be tempted to desert him and return to the house of David. And so, he created for them an alternative place of worship. An entry in the famous Matthew Henry’s Commentary states: “Thus Jeroboam made Israel to sin, and introduced idolatry [in Israel] .Though it is probable he meant this worship for Jehovah the God of Israel, it was directly contrary to the Divine majesty, to be thus represented.”
History, someone has observed, has sufficiently demonstrated that “the point of departure for every major apostasy in Israel and Christendom involved the commingling of worship of the true God with worship of the Sun-god.” The golden calf Aaron did and the pagan worship introduced by King Jeroboam have all been proved to be in honour of the Sun-god. And so is Christmas. And God’s attitude towards them can only be the same.
Finally, I want to agree with a Scottish writer who insists that “Christmas is still a pagan festival through and through. Its change of name from Saturnalia, the birthday of the Sun god, to Christ’s Mass has not altered its true character one iota: and the evil spirit behind its celebrations still produces the deception, debt, drunkenness, misrule and licentiousness that characterized the pagan revelries of bygone days.” Indeed, all other accompaniments like Christmas tree, Christmas log, exchange of gifts, etc., are direct carry-overs from the celebration of the birthday of the Sun-god. And to leave no one in doubt as to its origin and state, Christmas has begun to gradually reassume its original name of Yule (Yuletide). Check your history books and find out the origin of this name, whether it antedates the birth of Christ in Bethlehem or not!
But the simple question is: do we need to commemorate the birth of the Saviour to obtain salvation? The answer is obvious, and it is NO! What we need to realize is that at some point in the history of mankind, a Saviour was born, and He is still today calling on all of us to quit our sinful practices and embrace the salvation He has brought us by dying a most shameful death on the Cross of Calvary because of our sins. Today He is Saviour, but in no distant time, He would become the Judge, and it will become a different matter altogether. We must embrace Him without delay in true repentance, and let Him come into our lives to give us power to live life above sin. Indeed, the decision to spend eternity either in hell or heaven is for us to individually make.( Rev. 20:15).