The ADVENTure of Christmas (4 of 12)

posted by Jeffrey on Monday, December 05, 2005 at 7:14 PM


*I've moved, and my posts have come with me! Check out my new blog at www.jeffrey-davis.net/blog/*

Well, it had to happen, I missed yesterday's post--bring out the bamboo rods, I deserve it.

Around the Christmas season I always seem to hear a great number of people using a great many excuses of why it's ridiculous and uneducated to "celebrate Jesus' birth on December 25th". They say things like, "don't you know that all Christian holidays were pagan holidays before they were 'Christian'?" Well yes, I do know that--and your point is??? So let's talk about why we celebrate the birth of Jesus on December 25th.

Well before the shift into the Common Era (A.D.), the Romans held a yearly celebration called Saturnalia, which means "the birthday of the unconquerable sun". They spent an entire week feasting and worshiping their many gods and finished off the celebration with a party to end all parties! That party was held on December 25th each year. Enter Constantine.

No, I'm not talking about a twisted exorcist played by Keanu Reeves. I'm talking about the Roman emperor who, in my opinion, single handedly screwed the spread of the Gospel by ushering Christendom into the Roman Empire at the First Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325 (Christendom later rose to its peak--where it remained for a looooong time--in A.D. 392 under the emperor Theodosius I). But that's another rant for another day, lol. I digress, back to the story...

In the year A.D. 313 Constantine became a follower of Christ and was disturbed by his people's worships of false gods. Acting on his concern, he declared December 25th "the Feast of the Nativity"--purposely using the similar terminology that his fellow Romans used to describe their celebration on that day. In the years that followed, the Feast of the Nativity became known as "Christ-mass", which obviously became Christmas.

Sometimes I wonder why Christians can't seem to be creative and original. It seems that we're always knocking off the title of a book, or tv show, or song, etc, and twisting them into some "holy" program to be used to "reach" the "lost" (sorry, superfluous quotes there...). However, the book that much of the information from these posts is coming from, The ADVENTure of Christmas, helped me to see this phenomenon in a different light. The author cited Romans 12:21 that says, "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."

Cool perspective. I've never thought our holiday's evil roots as being overcome with good in that way. (But I do still feel that Christians need to stop knocking off every freakin' thing they can--I mean come on, use the creativity God gave you!) So as we celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus this December 25th, let it motivate us to cover all evil and be covered ourselves in the light that radiates from our Creator-Savior's face.

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