Merry Crisis || Week 1 – Identity Crisis

Crisis – a time of great disagreement, confusion, or suffering.

Is Christmas Celebrated in the Bible?
Is December 25 a pagan day?
To Santa or not to Santa?
Are Christmas trees pagan?
Should Christians celebrate Christmas?

What is the REASON for the SEASON ?

Epistemology – the theory of knowledge, especially with regard to its methods, validity, and scope. The investigation of what distinguishes justified belief from opinion.

Is Christmas celebrated in the Bible ?
No, but the event it celebrates is.

John 1:14
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Is anything wrong with celebrating the coming of Jesus?

Is December 25th pagan?
Mithras Birthday
Saturnalia Celebration
Birthday of “Sol Invictus”

-December 17-23
– House to house singing, naked
-Human Sacrifice, Slave Role reversal
-Drunkenness, Immorality

Natilus Sol Invictus
-Birth of Unconquerable Sun (Dec. 25)
-Constantine Legend/Myth.

Why did the early church celebrate on December 25th?
-9 months from Passover. (March 25)
-Repurpose pagan days ?
-Magi Arrival theory

Is there anything pagan about December 25th?
-A day is what you make it. (Psalm 118:24, Romans 14)

Whatever you do, whenever you do it. Do it unto the Lord.

Are Christmas Trees Pagan?
– Roman Cult of Asheira
– Tree in home, decorated (No sources to support)
– Jeremiah 10

Jeremiah 10:2-4
Thus says the Lord:“Learn not the way of the nations,  nor be dismayed at the signs of the heavens
because the nations are dismayed at them,3 for the customs of the peoples are vanity. A tree from the forest is cut down  and worked with an axe by the hands of a craftsman.4 They decorate it with silver and gold;  they fasten it with hammer and nails so that it cannot move.

Jeremiah 10:5
Their idols are like scarecrows in a cucumber field, and they cannot speak; they have to be carried, for they cannot walk. Do not be afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, neither is it in them to do good.”

Is there anything pagan about trees?

Deuteronomy 16:21 ESV
You shall not plant any tree as an Asherah beside the altar of the Lord your God that you shall make.
KJV – Thou shalt not plant thee a grove (Asherah) of any trees near unto the altar of the LORD thy God, which thou shalt make thee.

Altar – (Hebrew) mizbah =  slaughter/sacrifice
(Greek) thusiastérion = place of sacrifice

Hebrews 10:5-14
Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said, “Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body have you prepared for me; 6 in burnt offerings and sin offerings you have taken no pleasure. 7 Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come to do your will, O God, as it is written of me in the scroll of the book.’” 8 When he said above, “You have neither desired nor taken pleasure in sacrifices and offerings and burnt offerings and sin offerings” (these are offered according to the law), 9 then he added, “Behold, I have come to do your will.” He does away with the first in order to establish the second. 10 And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.11 And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. 14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

Is there anything pagan about trees?
Is there anything pagan about putting a tree in your house?
Is there anything pagan about decorating a tree?

What was pagan ?
What was pagan? Their purpose.

To Santa or not to Santa?

Symbols vs Distractions

Should Christians Celebrate Christmas?

Deuteronomy 12:29-31
When the Lord your God cuts off before you the nations whom you go in to dispossess, and you dispossess them and dwell in their land, 30 take care that you be not ensnared to follow them, after they have been destroyed before you, and that you do not inquire about their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods?—that I also may do the same.’ 31 You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way, for every abominable thing that the Lord hates they have done for their gods, for they even burn their sons and their daughters in the fire to their gods. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, 28 for “‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, “‘For we are indeed his offspring.’ 29 Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man.

1 Corinthians 8:1-6
Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that “all of us possess knowledge.” This “knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. 2 If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. 3 But if anyone loves God, he is known by God. 4 Therefore, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that “an idol has no real existence,” and that “there is no God but one.” 5 For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”— 6 yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist. 7 However, not all possess this knowledge. But some, through former association with idols, eat food as really offered to an idol, and their conscience, being weak, is defiled. 8 Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do. 9 But take care that this right of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.

What is the reason for the Season ?

What is the reason for the Season ?
….Not Jesus.

What is the reason for the Season ?