“Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the church. The first evidence of the feast is from Egypt.” – Catholic Encyclopaedia, 1911 edition.
Now that the din and vulgar, riotous, gin-soaked and licentious bacchanalian revelry of the Christmas celebrations are at last over (I hope so, really), I think there is enough sanity in the land for me to ask this very simple question, namely, what really is Christmas?
You would agree that this is a very problematic question. I would rather say what I think Christmas is not. I doubt, for instance, if anyone still pretends that the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God and Saviour of mankind was born (as a man) on what is today known as Christmas Day. December 25, I believe, should be the very peak of winter, and I have often wondered how those shepherds the angels met could be out there “in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night” (Luke 2:8) in the killing cold, with snow raining heavily on them. Again, after the scorching period of autumn, would there still remain any green grass in the fields?
Christmas is, without doubt, the most prominent among the several irremediably polluted children that emerged from the very unholy and ungodly marriage between a depreciating version of Christianity and (Roman) paganism many years after the death of the Apostles of Christ and the genuine Christians that took over from them. Although the pagan worship of the SUN god had gained prominence in several parts of the world long before the birth of Christ, and had permeated and gained wide acceptance in imperial Rome, it was Emperor Constantine’s Edict in 321 AD which ordered the unification of the mostly apostate Christians and pagans in the clearly abominable observance of the “the venerable day of the Sun,” that increased its influence on the Roman church. What has become clear, judging from historical accounts, is that Emperor Constantine may not have truly become a Christian as is still believed in some quarters.
An internet article I read last Saturday rehearsed what many of us already know, namely, that “The 25th December was celebrated in ancient days as the birthday of the unconquerable SUN god, (variously known as Tammuz, Mithra, Saturn, Adonis or BAAL) centuries before Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem.[but] in order to win Gentile converts.the Roman Church, centuries after the Apostolic era, adopted this ancient winter festival of the SUN god and renamed it Christmas.” According to Alexander Hyslop, in his famous book, The Two Babylons (p.91), “.within the Christian Church no such festival as Christmas was ever heard of till the third century, and that not till the fourth century was far advanced did it gain much observance.” This ungodly introduction signaled the commencement of great apostasy, and those who observe it, are unwittingly honouring and worshipping the devil instead of Christ, the Saviour.
In ancient Babylon, the SUN god was known and worshipped as the son of the “Queen of Heaven.” And God had clearly warned the Israelites to beware and never worship this “queen of heaven” or they would face His wrath. And when the Israelites of that time insisted that they would go ahead to worship the queen of heaven despite God’s injunction, He pronounced a severe punishment on them. (See Jeremiah 44: 17-27). Verse 17-19 contains the reply of the Israelites after Jeremiah had given them God’s warning against the worship of the queen of heaven, and Verse 24-27 contains God’s dreadful pronouncement on them because of their obstinacy.
This queen of heaven, a terrible demon and enemy of God, had always sought to get the world to worship her instead of God. She had appeared under several names in several places long before Christ was born in the flesh. In Acts of Apostles, for instance, we saw her as Diana of Ephesus, which was always identified with the Greek Artemis. As little Roman Catholic children in Catechism classes and Block Rosary meetings in those days, we were told a very beautiful story of how the “queen of heaven” had appeared to little children in Fatima in 1917. To be fair to this demon, and according to the story which became the subject of a very pleasant Igbo Catholic song, she had introduced herself truly as the “queen of heaven.” I think it was some misguided and overzealous fellows that declared her to be Mary, the mother of Jesus! And since then, in other apparitions in several other places, she has been trying to act like she is Mary, thereby drawing more worshippers. You see, humans can at
times teach spirits wisdom.
In his book, The Story of Christmas, Michael Harrison reports that in “in a famous letter to Augustine, Pope Gregory directs the great [Roman Catholic] missionary to accommodate the ceremonies of the Christian worship as much as to those of the heathen, that the people might not be startled at the change, and in particular, the Pope advised Augustine to allow coverts to kill and eat at the Christmas festival a great number of oxen to the glory of God, as they had formerly done to the Devil.”
This official directive to marry pagan practices with Christian ones was given many years ago, but its influence has endured, even till today. In my village, for instance, there is a very satanic festival that was later “Christianized,” because many influential Catholics, including some Catechists and priests, insisted they would not stop participating in it. I still remember our parish priest in those days saying that if the people wanted to “prove” the feast was not satanic, they should allow him to say Mass on the day it would commence! A number of other satanic festivals have also this way become “Christianized” in many communities today. But we all know that in these feasts, nothing has changed; the people still do their thing their way in honour of the devil, though, now, in a more subtle, covert way. That is also the case with Christmas.
In fact, accounts have it that at Christmas services in Rome in those days, once the sun appeared, the people would turn back from the proceedings and worship it with much excitement, before continuing in the service. The devil is having a good laugh because he knows all of it is done to honour and worship him. Looking at how Christmas is celebrated today, there is no way Jesus Christ can be associated with it. But look into your history books or internet sources, and you will realize that the same excessive reveling and drunkenness that marked the feast of the SUN god on December 25 long before Christ was born in Bethlehem are the same unedifying preoccupations that dominate the celebration of Christmas.