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"Is it Possible to Christianize Modern Holidays"?
by Lani W. Finley

 

There is only one similarity that Satan has in common with Jesus Christ. It is that he is the same today, yesterday and forever. The scriptures tell us that the devil is a murderer and a liar.

Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. (John 8:44)
The Bible also informs us that he has deceived the whole world (Rev. 12:9).
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him Rev 12:9. (Emphasis on scripture is mine throughout).
Satan will never repent, nor cease from this evil conduct. It is as natural to him, as breathing is to a human being. He will always remain the same. One of his goals is to twist, pervert and misrepresent the truth of God, as revealed in the Holy Scriptures. He has managed to steal the truth regarding God's Holy Days from the majority of mankind and has deceived them into believing fables. The apostle Paul warned the body of Christ that sound doctrine would be replaced with fables of men.
"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables (2 Tim 4:3-4)."

The Cunning Deception

Satan has deceived most of the Christian community into accepting the erroneous belief that man can create doctrines and days of worship outside of the scriptures and use them to honor God. This is predicated upon the belief, that it is somehow possible to Christianize something that is evil and an abomination to God. Is it possible for pagan feast days and symbols, that were used in the evil worship of the devil, to be cleaned-up and used for the worship of God? Most learned Christian pastors will admit that holidays like: Christmas, Easter, Halloween and Valentines Day have a pagan origin. Nevertheless, they reason, that if Christ's name and the person of Jesus, is incorporated into the day, that it is somehow Christianized and can be used to worship a Holy God. Is this true? There is a way that seems right to man, but ends in death (Prov. 14:122). What does God have to say about something that has its origin in pagan worship? In addition, how does He feel about pagan symbols and artifacts? We should let the Word of God answer this question for us.

The graven images of their gods shall ye burn with fire: thou shalt not desire the silver or gold that is on them, nor take it unto thee, lest thou be snared therein: for it is an abomination to the LORD thy God). 26 Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thine house, lest thou be a cursed thing like it: but thou shalt utterly detest it, and thou shalt utterly abhor it; for it is a cursed thing (Deut 7:25-26).

When thou art come into the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations.
10There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch. 11Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. 12 For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee Deut 18:9-12.
 
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. (Jer 10:2).
Please notice how many times God uses the word abomination in these verses. The word abomination means, "a hateful thing, disgusting, an abhorrence." Does this sound as if God could ever approve of the pagan practices, symbols and customs of the heathens? We are instructed by God not to bring any of these things into our homes and we are commanded to detest and abhor them. We are warned, "not to learn the way of the heathen". God did not say for us to learn their ways, Christianize them and use them to worship Him.

Anything that is evil and an abhorrence to God, cannot have Christ's name attached to it and made holy. Can one attach the name of Jesus to the act of adultery, incest, lies or murder and then make the act acceptable to God? Of course not, because there can be no fellowship between good and evil. The Word of God confirms this.

Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? 15 What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? 16What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people". 17 "Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you (2 Cor 6:14-17 NIV).
 
You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord's table and the table of demons (1 Cor 10: 21 NIV).
Paul is warning Christians not to have any fellowship with things that originated in the deceived heart of man and inspired by the devil. We are commanded to come out and be separated from these evil and corrupt beliefs and customs.

The Fables

We have investigated several scriptures that clearly condemn combining pagan doctrines with Christian worship. God has plainly stated that this is not acceptable to Him. However, the world has chosen to adopt and teach fables, instead of truth. Although, most pastors know that these fables are derived from pagan origins; they try to justify them by erroneously attaching Christ's name to them. Most Christians believe that their holidays (a deviation from the biblical references to holydays) honor God and His Son, Jesus Christ. However, reference materials and Bible historians agree, that it was sheer paganism, that gave birth to these modern Christian observances.

(1). Christmas:
The following is a quote from the Encyclopedia Britannica, Volume 11; page 390 "During the later periods of Roman history, sun worship gained in importance and ultimately led to what has been called a 'solar monotheism.' Nearly all the gods of the period were possessed of Solar qualities, and both Christ and Mithra acquired the traits of solar deities. The feast of Sol and Victus (open unconquered Sun) on December 25th was celebrated with great joy, and eventually this date was taken over by the Christians as Christmas, the birthday of Christ."

The Encyclopedia Americana, 1956 edition, adds, “Christmas…was not observed in the first centuries of the Christian church, since the Christian usage in general was to celebrate the death of remarkable persons rather than their birth…a feast was established in memory of this event [Christ’s birth] in the fourth century. In the fifth century the Western Church ordered the feast to be celebrated forever on the day of the Mithraic rites of the birth of the sun and at the close of the Saturnalia, as no certain knowledge of the day of Christ’s birth existed.”

Previous quotes introduced the subject of the Saturnalia. Let’s carefully study just exactly who Saturn was. Consider the following quote from another large American newspaper, The Democrat and Chronicle, Rochester, New York, December 1984: “The Roman festival of Saturnalia, Dec. 17-24, moved citizens to decorate their homes with greens and lights and give gifts to children and the poor. The Dec. 25 festival of natalis solis invicti, the birth of the unconquered sun, was decreed by the emperor Aurelian in A.D. 274 as a Winter Solstice celebration, and sometime (later)…was Christianized as a date to celebrate the birth of the Son of Light.”

 

(2) Easter:
“Easter—the name Easter comes to us from Ostera or Eostre, the Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring, for whom a spring festival was held annually, as it is from this pagan festival that some of our Easter customs have come”(Hazeltine,p.53).
 
“In Babylonia…the goddess of spring was called Ishtar. She was identified with the planet Venus, which, because…[it] rises before the Sun…or sets after it…appears to love the light [this means Venus loves the sun-god]…In Phoenecia, she became Astarte; in Greece, Eostre [related to the Greek word Eos: “dawn”], and in Germany, Ostara [this comes from the German word Ost: “east,” which is the direction of dawn]” (Englehart, p. 4).

The widely-known historian, Will Durant, in his famous and respected work, Story of Civilization, pp. 235, 244-245, writes, “Ishtar [Astarte to the Greeks, Ashtoreth to the Jews], interests us not only as analogue of the Egyptian Isis and prototype of the Grecian Aphrodite and the Roman Venus, but as the formal beneficiary of one of the strangest of Babylonian customs…known to us chiefly from a famous page in Herodotus: Every native woman is obliged, once in her life, to sit in the temple of Venus [Easter], and have intercourse with some stranger.” Is it any wonder that the Bible speaks of the religious system that has descended from that ancient city as, “Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth” (Rev. 17:5)?

(3). Halloween:
[p. 315] Druidic Element. Unlike the familiar observance of All Souls, Halloween traditions have never been connected with Christian religious celebrations of any kind. Although the name is taken from a great Christian feast (Allhallows’ Eve), it has nothing in common with the Feast of All Saints, and is, instead, a tradition of pre-Christian times that has retained its original character in form and meaning.

Halloween customs are traced back to the ancient Druids… Halloween fires are kindled in many places even now, especially in Wales and Scotland.

Another, and more important, tradition is the Druidic belief that during the night of November 1 demons, witches, and evil spirits roamed the earth in wild and furious gambols of joy to greet the arrival of "their season"—the long nights and early dark of the winter months. They had their fun with the poor mortals that night, frightening, harming them, and playing all kinds of mean tricks. The only way, it seemed, for scared humans to escape the persecution of the demons was to offer them things they liked, especially dainty food and sweets. Or, in order to escape the fury of these horrible creatures, a human could disguise himself as one of them and join in their roaming. In this way they would take him for one of their own and he would not be bothered. That is what people did in ancient times, and it is in this very form the custom has come down to us, practically unaltered, as our familiar Halloween celebration: …

[p. 316] Roman Element. In those countries that once belonged to the Roman Empire there is the custom of eating or giving away fruit, especially apples, on Halloween. It spread to neighboring countries: to Ireland and Scotland from Britain, and to the Slavic countries from Austria. It is probably based upon a celebration of the Roman goddess Pomona, to whom gardens and orchards were dedicated. Since the annual Feast of Pomona was held on November 1, the relics of that observance became part of our Halloween celebration, for instance the familiar tradition of "ducking" for apples. Source: Francis X. Weiser, Handbook of Christian Feasts and Customs (New York: Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc., 1958), pp. 315, 316. Copyright 1952

It is evident that these observances of modern Christianity had their birth and origin in absolute paganism. How can Christians justify telling their innocent little children these satanic lies? The Ten Commandments teach us it is wrong to lie. The scriptures also tell us that, no liars, and those who participate in witchcraft, shall inherit the Kingdom of God" (Gal 5: 19-21 & Rev. 22:15). Yet, millions of professing Christians will fill their children with falsehoods about Santa Clause, flying reindeer, an Easter Bunny that lays eggs, fairies, wizards and witches. There is something terribly wrong with this thought process. Nowhere in the Word of God does it instruct us to observe these days, or to lie to our children. However, it does teach us to repent of such practices and to remove ourselves from anything that has its roots in the worship of the Satan the devil.

The Bible instructs us not to substitute the teaching of man for the truth of God.

Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. 9And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition (Mark 7:7,9).
Most professing Christians find it difficult to accept these truths because the observance of the holidays gives them a warm and fuzzy feeling. They simply do not understand that the worship of God is not based upon feelings, but on truth. Christians must remember that we are to worship God in "spirit and truth" - not lies and fables (John 4:24). Christians must also be aware that Satan's ministers are transformed into ministers of light.
And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works (2 Cor 11:14-15).
Jesus Christ came to "destroy the works of the devil" (1 John 3:8). He did not come to incorporate them into the worship of Himself and His Heavenly Father. It was the lies of the devil that brought division within the Kingdom of God and caused one third of the angels to rebel. It was his lies that deceived Adam and Eve and caused the death of all mankind and Jesus Christ, our Savior. Our Heavenly Father hates the works of Satan - and so should we. God Almighty is a jealous God, "For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God" (Exod 34:14). He will not share the worship of Himself and His Son, Jesus Christ, with anyone or anything else. To incorporate pagan teachings into the worship of God, would be the same as asking God to share His throne with the works of the devil. That is impossible for God to entertain.



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