MY AFTER CHRISTMAS RAMBLINGS
I know that you all were wondering where my Christmas rantings were this year. It was a big disappointment for you, I’m sure. So I decided to do an after Christmas blog for your musing.
After much consideration I decided to concede. I have come to realize that most of you are not celebrating the hollow day of the Saturnalia with intent. I am appreciating your freedom to do as you desire. Your free will has been given to you by the Lord as a gift, and you are welcome to exercise it according to your own conscience. You have the right to do as you please, obey the Scriptures or not.
However, what you don’t have the right to do is put the Lord’s stamp of approval on it. In Leviticus 23, He has given us the Holy Feasts that are perpetual, prophetic, eternal, and given by the Lord as His appointments. Only the Messiah Himself could keep these appointments.
Even though you might be totally unaware of the pagan roots of Christmas, I am sure you have no desire to carry on the traditions of the Scandinavian Nordic culture and honor Odin himself in your practices. Jeremiah 10 calls these practices evil.
1 Hear the word which the LORD speaks to you, O house of srael.
2 Thus says the LORD,
“Do not learn the way of the nations,
And do not be terrified by the signs of the heavens
Although the nations are terrified by them;
3 For the customs of the peoples are delusion;
Because it is wood cut from the forest,
The work of the hands of a craftsman with a cutting tool.
4 “They decorate it with silver and with gold;
They fasten it with nails and with hammers
So that it will not totter.
5 “Like a scarecrow in a cucumber field are they,
And they cannot speak;
They must be carried,
Because they cannot walk!
Do not fear them,
For they can do no harm,
Nor can they do any good.”
I have no doubt you are probably a person who loves the Lord and His Word and you have full intention of being obedient to passages like…
2 Cor 6:14-18
Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said,
“I will dwell in them and walk among them;
And I will be their God, and they shall be My people.
Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate,” says the Lord.
“And do not touch what is unclean;
And I will welcome you.
And I will be a father to you,
And you shall be sons and daughters to Me,”
Says the Lord Almighty.
Rav Shaul (Paul) is quoting from Isaiah 52:11, but I’m sure you knew that. Could Paul have referenced that passage because the Lord is the same yesterday, today and forever? Does what was said in the Tenach (Old Testament) mean the same when it is quoted in the Brit Hadasha (New Testament)? If so, I am sure you can agree that our association with the pagan world and their customs of worship should be avoided. But remember, you do have freedom.
Even though Deut. 7:1-6 says:
“When the LORD your God brings you into the land where you are entering to possess it, and clears away many nations before you, the Hittites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and stronger than you, and when the LORD your God delivers them before you and you defeat them, then you shall utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them and show favor to them. Furthermore, you shall not intermarry with them; you shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor shall you take their daughters for your sons. For they will turn your sons away from following Me to serve others gods; then the anger of the LORD will be kindled against you and He will quickly destroy you. But thus you shall do to them: you shall tear down their altars and smash their sacred pillars, and hew down their Asherim, and burn their graven images with fire. For you are a holy people to the LORD your God; the LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.”
Now, while we can’t go around smashing other people’s stuff in this society no matter how vile it is, shouldn’t we at least not be inviting those items or practices into our lives and homes? I’m sure you would agree.
With all due respect to your religious freedom, I just don’t see the Lord giving us permission to redeem their pagan symbols into our worship. Please allow me to elaborate my point with a few more Scriptures
“Be careful to listen to all these words which I command you, so that it may be well with you and your sons after you forever, for you will be doing what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God.
When the LORD your God cuts you off before you the nations which you are going in to dispossess, and you dispossess them and dwell in their land, beware that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed before you, and that you do not inquire after thei gods, saying, ‘How do these nations serve their gods, that I also may do likewise?’ You shall not behave thus toward the LORD your God, for every abominable act which the LORD hates they have done for their gods; for they even burn their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods.
Whatever I command you, you shall be careful to do; you shall not add to nor take away from it.”
So please, correct me if I am wrong. Because I know you don’t want to incorporate paganism into your worshiping the Lord. I don’t seem to be hearing anything here about the freedom to co-opt pagan worship or practices into the worship of the Lord, do you? I realize that the immediate context of the passage is in relationship to the Jews entering the land of Israel; but isn’t there a spiritual principle here for us as well?
Didn’t the Lord reject King Saul for thinking he had a better plan than His?
1 Sam 15:10-11
Then the word of the LORD came to Samuel, saying, “I regret that I have made Saul king, for he has turned back from following Me and has not carried out My commands.” And Samuel was distressed and cried out to the LORD all night.
Call me naïve, but is the Lord willing to give deference to our good intentions, no matter how noble they might seem to us at the time?
I find it funny that the Lord Himself set up the Biblical feasts that all point to the Messiah in specific detail, yet we would rather spend our time, energy and devotion defending the traditions of men over the Word of the Lord. If you knew nothing else about Christmas, hopefully you at least know it was from co-opted paganism by the Catholic Church who sprinkled holy water on those traditions to give a concession to both pagans and the so-called Christians.
If Christmas were so important to the Lord, then why wasn’t it celebrated by the Apostles? Why won’t it be celebrated in the Millennial Kingdom like the Feast of Sukkot (Tabernacles)?
Then it will come about that any who are left of all the nations that went against Jerusalem will go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to celebrate the Feast of Booths. And it will be that whichever of the families of the earth does not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, there will be no rain on them. If the family of Egypt does not go up or enter, then no rain will fall on them; it will be the plague with which the LORD smites the nations who do not go up to celebrate the Feast of Booths. This will be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all the nations who do not go up to celebrate the Feast of Booths.
Christmas doesn’t even get an honorable mention.
Doesn’t it seem odd to you that the symbol most regarded by Christians and most defended in the public is the “right of Christians” to put up a creche in the public square. If you missed that, it was all over the news.
So what is a creche anyways? Well, simply stated, it is a nativity set filled with little idols of their version of baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph. I don’t know about you, but in the Scriptures I read I am forbidden to make a graven image of anything in Heaven above. earth below, or in the sea.
“You shall not make for yourself an idol or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing loving kindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep my commandments.”
If Yeshua is sitting at the right hand of the Father, then I would at least think that believers would have enough Biblical discernment to know that the creche is verboten. Where does that custom come from? The Catholic Church, of course!
We stoop so low when we elevate the traditions of men above the Word of the Lord. Yeshua spoke those same words to the Pharisees in Matt 15:1-3
Then some Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, “Why to Your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.” And He answered and said to them, “Why do you yourselves transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?”
So in conclusion, yes, you have the freedom to celebrate Christmas or any other man-made hollow day you please. Feel free to substitute the Biblical feasts for the traditions of men. Let your good intentions be known. Make sure folks know you are not celebrating the Saturnalia. But know this, Satan enjoys those hollow days also because they replace and invalidate the true Biblical feasts and appointments that were kept by Yeshua Himself. After all, it was the prophet Daniel who warned us of the Anti Messiah’s plan to do just that.
“Thus he said: ‘The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on the earth, which will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth and tread it down and crush it. As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings will arise; and another will arise after them, and he will be different from the previous ones and will subdue three kings. He will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time. But the court will sit for judgment, and his dominion will be taken away, annihilated and destroyed forever. Then the sovereignty, the dominion and the greatness of all the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be given to the people of the saints of the Highest One; His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all the dominions will serve and obey Him.’”
Alterations in the times and Law refers to the fact that he will change the Lev 23 times and seasons. How will he do that? He has already started by replacing the Biblical feasts with made up pagan events just like so many have tried to do before him. Everyone who follows him will do it with good intentions.