Showing posts with label Christmas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Christmas. Show all posts

Friday, December 25, 2020

Wishing You a Blessed Christmas!

During tumultuous times, celebrating the birth of Jesus is a stark reminder to Christians that we have hope. This hope is not based in humanity. Instead, we need to focus on how God the Son left Heaven and became the man Jesus for our salvation.

Credit: Pixabay / falco

He did not come to make everything into our best lives now. In fact, following Jesus involves sacrifice and persecution; it is not a lazy tinhorn's religion like atheism. But we are given eternal salvation, adoption as sons and daughters of the living God, purpose, victory over death, and much more.

I'm not going to take much more of your time, unless you have a hankering to see what I've done for this Christmas season. I'd be much obliged if you'd watch the "flash mob" video. Look for how people are awestruck around the 4 min. 23 sec. mark. Okay, the other posts:

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

The Celebration of Christmas

Yes, we celebrate Christmas. No, we will not be manipulated into feeling guilty about it by Reverend Dourpuss or uninformed, legalistic Christians. Or professing atheists who pass along falsehood. Claims that Christmas is based on plagiarized pagan and mythic figures are false, pilgrim.


December 25 is the date that most professing Christians observe the birth of Jesus. Some people say it is a pagan thing to do. Such claims are uninformed at best.
Credit: Pixabay / RitaE
I'll allow that there are some errors in our traditions, such as the Magi visiting Jesus in the stable (their visit was a year or two later, and it was probably a large group, not just three). What if Christmas did have pagan associations? If that was true, then Christians who shun Christmas are inconsistent because several things we know and use today actually do have pagan origins — which are largely forgotten. Those people might want to avoid the days of the week and months of the year if they want to be consistent, for example.

December 25? I have read and some interesting arguments that insist that Jesus was indeed born on that date. Then I read others that make the case that he was born in late spring or early autumn. Maybe since we're unsure of the exact date, we should forget the whole thing? Don't be ridiculous!


Used under Fair Use provisions for educational purposes
Whenever Jesus was born and split history, people choose to observe December 25 (some using January 6) for the date of their observances. No, the Bible does not command it. Nor does the Bible forbid it. (For that matter, we see in John 10:22-23 that Jesus celebrated a non-commanded holiday.) If someone chooses to avoid celebrating, that is up to him or her, and nobody has any right to indulge in condemnation. Conversely, they have no right to condemn our liberty in Christ.

I'm going to wish you a happy Christmas, and continue celebrating the birth of God the Son, Jesus, our Creator and Redeemer. 

To read an interesting article on this subject, click on "Celebrating Christmas?" You may also like, "Is Christmas a Pagan Holiday?" There is also a humorous but informative short video below.



Monday, December 25, 2017

Earning Gifts from Santa

The way I've always understood it, a gift is something that is freely given. If you work to receive something, it is not a gift, but earned like wages or something. Children in many parts of the world are told about a being known by many names, including Father Christmas, Sinterklaas, Saint Nicholas, Santa Claus (see the pattern on the last three names?), and others.


Credit: RGBStock / LUSI
Way back yonder, Nicholas was a godly man who was also a giver of gifts. Legends built up, and today we have a recluse who lives at the North Pole, flying around the world with in a sleigh drawn by reindeer and giving gifts to all the good little girls and boys. Probably defies the laws of physics, as this internet legend indicates.

Like many others, I believed in Santa Claus, but as I grew older, I realized that the storyline was impossible. The myth was shattered when I walked past my parents' bedroom, the door was wide open and a big box of unwrapped gifts was in the middle of the floor. If they didn't want me "snooping", they could have at least moved the box out of plain view.

I never shook the feeling that my parents lied to me, though. Many adults are telling this fable to their children, often to prompt them to "be good" so Santa will bring them presents. (It probably works for about a week before Christmas, then they're back to being their old selves again after they grab the loot.) My kids were never told the full myth, but were told about it. I disremember if we told them not to spoil it for other kids who believe in Santa, though. The reason we leveled with them about Santa is that we did not want them to associate that with the truth of God becoming flesh and taking on the form of a man, whose birth is observed on December 25 or January 6. Here is one picture mixing the Santa myth with the reality of Jesus' birth that I like very much.

There is a false salvation connection with Santa. He sees and knows every child all the time, like an omniscient god. (Someone pointed out that he shouldn't need a list to check twice if he's that all-knowing.) Kids have to earn their gifts through good behavior. Then they are not gifts, they are wages. It is very bad to associate salvation with works, because it is only through God's grace and a gift of God (Rom. 3:23, Rom. 6:23, Eph. 2:8-9). Don't confuse the kids, you savvy? And don't confuse yourselves, either. No religious traditions, ceremonies, chanting, "being good" or anything else can save you except repenting and trusting Christ alone for your salvation.

You want to play at the Santa game, fine. It's a cute decoration (except for the creepy ones) and ubiquitous. If you don't like it, that's fine too, but don't be going Pharisee on folks, old son. Santa is still a veiled symbol of giving, and God gave us his Son as the ultimate gift.
[A] popular song portrays the portly North-pole dwelling St. Nick as omnipresent and omniscient—he somehow knows what every child is doing everywhere in the world. Of course, those are attributes that belong to God alone.

It also urges children to “be good for goodness’ sake!” But some vague idea of “goodness’ sake” or the hope of reaping a reward from Santa (or anyone else) should never be our motivation for being good. And who defines what “good” is in this context anyway?

We should be “good”—as defined by God in his Word—because we love our Heavenly Father and do not want to sin against him, and because he has commanded us to be perfect as he is (Matthew 5:48).
To read the entire article, click on "Naughty or Nice?" Also, for more material of a biblical nature and a passel of links for further reading, click on "Christmas and Creationists".



Sunday, December 25, 2016

A Deceptive Humanist Christmas Song

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

The late Greg Lake, most notably of the progressive rock bands Emerson, Lake and Palmer and King Crimson, had a "Christmas" song that wasn't. The lyrics were written by Peter Sinfield. There are conflicting accounts and misconceptions about "I Believe in Father Christmas", that it is a Christmas song, it was never intended to be such ("...about a loss of innocence and childhood belief"), Vietnam war protest, it's an atheist song, it's not atheist but rather "humanist" (as if there's a difference), and so on. I'll allow that it has excellent music and thought-provoking lyrics, but I haven't heard all of the versions.

Sinfield wrote lyrics for EMP and King Crimson, and Lake wrote many lyrics himself, including all of those on ELP's Tarkus album. One of these was "The Only Way (Hymn)", a mocking anti-theistic and anti-Christian song, including the lyrics, "Don't need the word now that you've heard. Don't be afraid, man is man-made". You shouldn't wonder at my suspicion that "I Believe in Father Christmas" is actually an atheistic song, despite the claims of the writers.


"I Believe in Father Christmas" is played as a Christmas song, but has a decidedly anti-Christian meaning. Key lyrics and examined.
Image credit: Pixabay / PublicDomainPictures
Let's take a look at some of the lyrics, which are found in their entirety here.
They said there'll be snow at Christmas
They said there'll be peace on earth
But instead it just kept on raining
A veil of tears for the virgin's birth
Ah, the ubiquitous "they" of so many songs. I tried writing some poems that I intended to turn into songs (fortunately for humanity, those lyrics are gone) and used "they". Someone asked, "Who are 'they'?" He was right. Sounds like a shadowy boogie man told in cowboy campfire tales. If "they" are the weather forecasters that promised snow, don't be surprised. Those people get a lot of things wrong even three days after a forecast. Some people think those same climate calculations can spell disaster for us 100 years from now, or less, as in Algore's famous failed predictions. But I digress. 

Lyricist Sinfield had a Christmas disappointment as a child. It happens. Did that destroy his weak or even nonexistent faith, such as Lewis Wolpert's rejection of God for not being a cosmic wish-granting genie? In a way, none of this is all that surprising, given the increased secularism of Britain. I'm just cognating on those things.
They sold me a dream of Christmas
They sold me a silent night
And they told me a fairy story
'till I believed in the Israelite
And I believed in Father Christmas [Ever notice that the title is in the present tense, I believe, but the lyrics are past tense, I believed? -CBB]
And I looked to the sky with excited eyes
'till I woke with a yawn in the first light of dawn
And I saw him and through his disguise
Oh no! It's the dreaded they again! How was it "sold"? (Maybe a traveling salesman with a bowler hat, umbrella, and a necktie like they wore in Britain back then.) Sinfield called "the Israelite" (Jesus) a "fairy story", and we're supposed to believe that this is not an atheistic song? Not hardly! Lake must have been in agreement about the "fairy story" because he sang those lyrics. Disbelief in Father Christmas? That's where I have a problem with Christians who tell their children about that character (even though he was based on a real person) and magical gift-giving, because they can easily say, "I was lied to about Santa, Jesus must be false as well". Some of us told our kids that Santa is make believe and illustrates the spirit of giving, but that Jesus is real.

The soaring final lines are impressive:
Hallelujah noel, be it Heaven or Hell
The Christmas we get we deserve
Pretty dreadful stuff. Greg Lake wants to join in the Christmas celebration for the good will and nice feelings, but why? We all know the reason people are singing hymns and exchanging gifts, the reason stores plan on making big money at the end of the year, and it's certainly not because of Saturnalia or Winter Solstice celebrants! No, I'm not forgetting Hanukkah, but it's not exactly prominent and a money-maker for retail stores. If atheists want to celebrate Christmas and leave Christ out, it's a fa├žade and they're living a lie. Christmas is about Christ, and they know it.

Do we get the Christmas we deserve? That line is nonsensical. Actually, we don't deserve Christmas at all! We are sinners (Rom. 3:23, 3:10-12) and deserve death (Rom. 6:23). God loves us (John 3:16, Rom. 5:8). Christmas is about Jesus, God the Son, our Creator, taking on human form for our redemption (John 1:1-3, Col. 1:16, Phil. 2:6-8). Those who do not belong to Jesus are enemies of God (Rom. 5:10) and blinded by their father down below (2 Cor. 4:4, John 8:44), but can repent and become children of the living God by faith (Eph. 2:8-9, Gal. 4:4-6, John 1:12, 2 Cor. 5:17). We've treated God like garbage, but he wants to redeem us and adopt us as his children. We can have Christmas, but we most certainly do not deserve it.

Greg Lake has met his Maker. He has since learned that man is not man-made (Gen. 1:27, Mark 10:6, Col. 1:16, John 1:1-3). He also knows his eternal destiny, and I hope he repented before the end. Where will you spend eternity?

I'm going to celebrate Christmas — something I do not deserve.