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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
Sherlin

The Affair We Have With Christmas

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Taken from my blog site:

https://waytruthandlifeweb.wordpress.com/

 

Picture the scene, Jesus full of a rage that no one was expecting, for they had never seen this side of Him. They knew Him to be compassionate, patient and loving. A healer. Who was this they were witnessing? He was going about the blessed temple in such anger. He attacked all those who depended upon this as their income to live, He carelessly tossed their precious goods aside. He cared not of what this would do to them, to their livelihood. His indigence and jealousy was expressed clearly as to who it was He cared about. He was revealing to the ignorant people what it was they were doing; making His Father’s House – a den of thieves. Matt 21:11-13

 

I wonder if Jesus were to walk the earth today if He would not do something similar? Picture this:

 

The sanctuary was filled with lightheartedness, the smells of spices mingled in the air for the spiced cider awaited the congregants after the service. The lights were especially beautiful twinkling with such joy. The songs of celebration were sung with special enthusiasm for it was the eve of Christmas and all were exceptionally jovial. They came on this day to give honor to Jesus in His birth and it is something they have always done and took great pride in. Keep Christ in Christmas they say! One day in a year that they may freely proclaim Him and they will continue to give honor to their Lord in this way as long as they live!

 

They just concluded the service and were about to be dismissed when this man enters the room. He looks around and takes in all the sights, He takes a deep breath and begins at one end of the room acting like a maniac! He pulls down the lights, the tree, He tears down all the wall decorations the candles – everyone is in horror. They wonder why someone doesn’t grab him and haul him out of this most sacred place, how dare he they think. He must be demonized and just can’t handle the holy atmosphere they conclude. He takes His place to the stage, the pastor cowers and shrinks to the back.

 

“My Father will not have you make the birth of His Son a place of idol worship! You have taken what is holy and turned it into market place mockery! You call this worship, but I say – it is not I you worship. For have I not said, you shall not have any other God nor any graven images? Ex 20: 3-5 You have taken what is holy and made it profane, and join with the world in its vulgar rituals. Do you not remember when David had the Ark carried on the cart of an ox? I am exact in what I command as worship to Me. Yet, you have created your own form of worship and honor to Me, you have brought down what is holy, like that day – for they did it according to how they saw fit 2 Sam 6: 1-7 . You say, ‘oh, but we can glorify your name in it! We can share Jesus Christ to all in this thing called Christmas.’ I ask, can one offer sacrifice to Baal and at the same time witness to the world Christ?”

 

I reflect the day Peter, James and John were the witness to a very glorious thing, the transfiguring of Christ and the visitation of Moses and Elijah. In this most holy and sacred moment, they attempted to bring it down to earth and wanted to make it a place of commemoration. Mark 9:2-8. But they were rebuked by God himself. In the same way has not the birth of Christ been made into a commemoration that was man’s idea? A most glorious and sacred event – boxed up and packaged by our own institution.

 

I can hear Him say these words in this season of commemoration,

 

‘This is My Beloved Son! Hear Him!’

 

Can you?

 

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How is worshiping Christ the same as worshiping an idol? No one sells anything in church on Christmas, there's no comparison to the temple where Jesus turned over the tables to a church on Christmas.

 

 

​​​​​​The command not to make images means not to make idols to bow down to.

 

​​​​​Mark 9:2-8 has nothing to do with commemoration. Mark 9:6 He did not know what to say, they were so frightened.

They weren't trying to bring down what's Holy, they just didn't know what they should be doing. They weren't rebuked, God was making a grand testimony by saying, "This is my beloved Son: listen to him."

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How is worshiping Christ the same as worshiping an idol?

When Moses was up on the mountain, getting the commandments from God, the Israelites thought he was taking too long and began to question if he were to ever come back. They demanded that Aron give them an object of worship – so they may worship God. They still wanted to worship God, the anger that was wrought forth was not about that it was the focus they created to center upon. This is the point that I bring across in this post. The object, being Christmas – an idol we have created to worship God.

Here are a few examples of worship that was not directed by God, or under His instruction – and His displeasure:

1 Samuel 13: 8-13 Saul went ahead to offer to God sacrifice according to his terms

1 Samuel 15:11-23; Saul says that he spared the spoil so that he may offer them to God

Cain made an offering to God but was this did not please God Gen 4:3-8

Ananias and Sapphira Acts 5:1-11 made an offering, in the name of God – and were killed by God for it.

​​​​​​

The command not to make images means not to make idols to bow down to.

Christmas is just that, a created image that man has made and it is esteemed higher then God. For no where do we read in scripture is the instruction to worship, observe and take Jesus’s birth – and make it into such the grand celebration that it is. Are we not to measure all we do with the lining up to scripture?

 

No one sells anything in church on Christmas, there's no comparison to the temple where Jesus turned over the tables to a church on Christmas.

The point I was making was what was Holy and God’s – was turned into something that made a profit and benefited man. In like manner being one who has worked in the retail market have seen first hand that Christmas sells. Both in the secular and the Christian areas. I dare say that you must buy into it in some way or another so you can enjoy the celebration in its entirety. Food, gifts, gatherings, decorations and the list goes on. The gross excess is rampant, many going into debt, many depressed. The comparison was the heart of the Father in His Son towards such a materialistic imbedded form of worship that the majority of Christians consider holy and sacred.

 

​​​​​Mark 9:2-8 has nothing to do with commemoration. Mark 9:6 He did not know what to say, they were so frightened.

They weren't trying to bring down what's Holy, they just didn't know what they should be doing. They weren't rebuked, God was making a grand testimony by saying, "This is my beloved Son: listen to him."

Yes, I agree they were afraid, but does this excuse their presumption? Jesus explained that being afraid does not change God’s displeasure in one’s actions in Matt 25:25 where the person who buried his talent in the ground.

I disagree with you on when you say God was not rebuking the 3. He interrupted and put an end to the amazing interaction that Jesus was having – that they were privileged to witness.

I believe His words were putting into their ill guided focus what was to be the focus – not on creating an object but to be an action…..Listen, Hear His Son. Not their own ideas, not their fear - His Son was to what they focus on, not make an image of Him putting Him under the tree with the manger scene.

 

I know I could debate until I am blue in the face with the majority who will defend the cause of Christmas till death, but that is not my aim. It is merely to bring a perspective that is most often not considered. My suggestion would be to go before the Father yourself, and ask Him what He thinks of Christmas. Oh but remember, your heart must be one that is truly wanting to know the answer no matter what it may be.

For this is where I believe the root of the problem. We just do what has always been done, tradition on top of tradition. It sounds holy, looks holy so it must be holy we say, rather than look to Him for our answers.

Peace to you

 

 

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How is worshiping Christ the same as worshiping an idol?

When Moses was up on the mountain, getting the commandments from God, the Israelites thought he was taking too long and began to question if he were to ever come back. They demanded that Aron give them an object of worship – so they may worship God. They still wanted to worship God, the anger that was wrought forth was not about that it was the focus they created to center upon. This is the point that I bring across in this post. The object, being Christmas – an idol we have created to worship God.

Here are a few examples of worship that was not directed by God, or under His instruction – and His displeasure:

1 Samuel 13: 8-13 Saul went ahead to offer to God sacrifice according to his terms

1 Samuel 15:11-23; Saul says that he spared the spoil so that he may offer them to God

Cain made an offering to God but was this did not please God Gen 4:3-8

Ananias and Sapphira Acts 5:1-11 made an offering, in the name of God – and were killed by God for it.

​​​​​​

The command not to make images means not to make idols to bow down to.

Christmas is just that, a created image that man has made and it is esteemed higher then God. For no where do we read in scripture is the instruction to worship, observe and take Jesus’s birth – and make it into such the grand celebration that it is. Are we not to measure all we do with the lining up to scripture?

No one sells anything in church on Christmas, there's no comparison to the temple where Jesus turned over the tables to a church on Christmas.

The point I was making was what was Holy and God’s – was turned into something that made a profit and benefited man. In like manner being one who has worked in the retail market have seen first hand that Christmas sells. Both in the secular and the Christian areas. I dare say that you must buy into it in some way or another so you can enjoy the celebration in its entirety. Food, gifts, gatherings, decorations and the list goes on. The gross excess is rampant, many going into debt, many depressed. The comparison was the heart of the Father in His Son towards such a materialistic imbedded form of worship that the majority of Christians consider holy and sacred.

​​​​​Mark 9:2-8 has nothing to do with commemoration. Mark 9:6 He did not know what to say, they were so frightened.

They weren't trying to bring down what's Holy, they just didn't know what they should be doing. They weren't rebuked, God was making a grand testimony by saying, "This is my beloved Son: listen to him."

Yes, I agree they were afraid, but does this excuse their presumption? Jesus explained that being afraid does not change God’s displeasure in one’s actions in Matt 25:25 where the person who buried his talent in the ground.

I disagree with you on when you say God was not rebuking the 3. He interrupted and put an end to the amazing interaction that Jesus was having – that they were privileged to witness.

I believe His words were putting into their ill guided focus what was to be the focus – not on creating an object but to be an action…..Listen, Hear His Son. Not their own ideas, not their fear - His Son was to what they focus on, not make an image of Him putting Him under the tree with the manger scene.

I know I could debate until I am blue in the face with the majority who will defend the cause of Christmas till death, but that is not my aim. It is merely to bring a perspective that is most often not considered. My suggestion would be to go before the Father yourself, and ask Him what He thinks of Christmas. Oh but remember, your heart must be one that is truly wanting to know the answer no matter what it may be.

For this is where I believe the root of the problem. We just do what has always been done, tradition on top of tradition. It sounds holy, looks holy so it must be holy we say, rather than look to Him for our answers.

Peace to you

 

They didn't use the golden calf to worship God but worshiped the calf itself, they made sacrifices to the calf. An idol is a false God and/or something that one focuses on or relies on instead of God. I have met anyone who worships a Christmas tree or a manger scene. People do focus more on the commercialized holiday than the holiday for it's meaning, but that doesn't mean the holiday and all who celebrate are like that.

 

​​​​​​​You say, "peace to you" yet all you bring is condemnation and false accusations of idol worship.

 

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They didn't use the golden calf to worship God but worshiped the calf itself, they made sacrifices to the calf.

I believe you are mistaken, please read the verse to see for yourself -that they were worshiping God – with the idol they had Arron construct as the object of their worship:

 

Then they said, “This is your god, O Israel, that brought you out of the land of Egypt!”

So when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it. And Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow is a feast to the Lord.” 6 Then they rose early on the next day, offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Exodus 32:4-6

 

An idol is a false God and/or something that one focuses on or relies on instead of God

I agree! We have made the idol called Christmas – as I have previously referred.

 

I have met anyone who worships a Christmas tree or a manger scene

They are objects we have fashioned that we use in our worship – at Christmas.

Every object that God ordained to be used in the worship and offerings in the Tabernacle had a specific meaning. They were not worshiped, but they were used in the worshiping and in the sacrifice and offering. You will recall the great detail and precision God gave in the building and institution of sacrifice, offering and worship.

How is it that we think nothing of how it is we worship God? That it seems right in our own eyes therefor it is right?

 

People do focus more on the commercialized holiday than the holiday for it's meaning,

Biblical worship, and the honoring of God (ordained by God) – not once ever intermingled with the world. That is what it means by the words; be holy, as I am holy. 1 Peter 1:14-16. To separate ourselves 2 Cor 6:17. Or do not be friends with the world James 4:4. Or do not be unequally yoked 2 Cor 6:14. What fellowship does darkness have with the light?

Christmas is the most celebrated by most religions, Christians, and non believing population – how does this fit in with instructions we are given on how to live and worship?

 

but that doesn't mean the holiday and all who celebrate are like that.

I’m not about labeling people. Just bringing to light issues that lie in the biblical context of Christmas.

 

You say, "peace to you" yet all you bring is condemnation and false accusations of idol worship.

I am sorry you feel this way, for that has not been my intent. I try to back up what it I say scripturalyy and feel I have done this sufficiently. Clearly this is about disagreement. I have not mal intent towards you, or anyone. I say peace to you, in sincerity and will add, may God bless us both with His Spirit of love for one another.

 

 

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No one sells anything in church on Christmas

 

Well, I actually saw a pastor selling junk in his office after the service.

Some kind of health products in a bottle.

 

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Well, I actually saw a pastor selling junk in his office after the service.

Some kind of health products in a bottle.

 

That doesn't sound like something common. Sometimes con men and swindlers pose as preaches to take people's money, sometimes by selling things like speical oils or prayer cloths.

 

I've been in what I call a store front church one time where they would pass around a collection bucket so no one felt judged if they only had a little to put in, yet in one service two women were trying to out do eachother and the preacher encouraged them. Not long after that the church closed, about a year later I found out that the preacher owns a large two story house and a ranch, but he couldn't keep the church open for longer than three months.

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I own a two story house and a ranch.

Actually it's a three story counting the basement.

Lol

 

Wasn't me though.

 

Ok, but if you were the pastor of a church who was renting out half of an old store you let the church close in three months time? This place was pretty cheap, it didn't even have a bathroom.

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Let those who celebrate the day celebrate to the Lord and those who don't celebrate not celebrate to the Lord. Let no man judge another in the matter.

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The Jesus cleansing the temple illustration is irrelevant to the matter. It is like comparing apples to oranges.

 

Why? Looks the same to me.

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Ok, but if you were the pastor of a church who was renting out half of an old store you let the church close in three months time? This place was pretty cheap, it didn't even have a bathroom.

 

Did the early church have a bathroom?

It's not mentioned in scripture.

 

(jut kidding)

 

 

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Did the early church have a bathroom?

It's not mentioned in scripture.

 

(jut kidding)

 

 

Lol. Ok, but what I'm saying is this guy had plenty of money but he let the church close.

​​​​​

 

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Let those who celebrate the day celebrate to the Lord and those who don't celebrate not celebrate to the Lord. Let no man judge another in the matter.

 

 

 

I do not hold the power to anyone in ‘letting them worship how they want.’ Nor do I judge anyone. What I have done is I have judged Christmas and have included scripture. My desire is only to have those who would read, to give it some serious thought, take it to God and let Him move in their hearts.

 

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New Covenant – new relationship in the worship of God. Worship is done through the Son, His Life was provided as the means to enter into the holy of holies.

Jesus declares this while He walked the earth saying: John 6:23-24

“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Christmas worship is earthly and sensual, it involves material & experience.

 

We are instructed to live where are Lord is which is above – and not of this world: Col 3:1-2

 

We are told not to follow the traditions, philosophies or principles of the world Col 2:8

 

Christmas is a tradition, formulated through pagan sources – history accounts vividly clear on the evil origins.

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The Jesus cleansing the temple illustration is irrelevant to the matter. It is like comparing apples to oranges.

 

I don’t agree. Jesus still has zeal and passion for His Father’s will and is angered at those who twist it into their own making, for their own pleasure and spiritual satisfaction.

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New Covenant – new relationship in the worship of God. Worship is done through the Son, His Life was provided as the means to enter into the holy of holies.

Jesus declares this while He walked the earth saying: John 6:23-24

“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Christmas worship is earthly and sensual, it involves material & experience.

 

We are instructed to live where are Lord is which is above – and not of this world: Col 3:1-2

 

We are told not to follow the traditions, philosophies or principles of the world Col 2:8

 

Christmas is a tradition, formulated through pagan sources – history accounts vividly clear on the evil origins.

 

​​​​​​Now you're making asumpions on how people celebrate Christmas. It's on individuals whether or not they're materialistic and experience driven. The world doesn't celebrate the birth of Christ, our Lord and Savior.

How is worship of Christ different on one day of year? And how do you know how people worship?

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I don’t agree. Jesus still has zeal and passion for His Father’s will and is angered at those who twist it into their own making, for their own pleasure and spiritual satisfaction.

 

 

​​​​​​You're making assumptions. What's being twisted and the by who?

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​​​​​​Now you're making asumpions on how people celebrate Christmas. It's on individuals whether or not they're materialistic and experience driven. The world doesn't celebrate the birth of Christ, our Lord and Savior.

How is worship of Christ different on one day of year? And how do you know how people worship?

 

I have yet to see anyone who celebrates Christmas without any of the trappings. If they do, I would not call it Christmas, but true worship of the Son

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I do not hold the power to anyone in ‘letting them worship how they want.’ Nor do I judge anyone. What I have done is I have judged Christmas and have included scripture. My desire is only to have those who would read, to give it some serious thought, take it to God and let Him move in their hearts.

 

Romans 14:5-6.

 

 

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what constitutes worship

 

Reference and adoration. You didn't answer the questions.

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I have yet to see anyone who celebrates Christmas without any of the trappings. If they do, I would not call it Christmas, but true worship of the Son

 

Yes, it is impossible to truly worship while giving gifts or decorating your house to show the reason for the season by putting out a nativity scene.

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I'll just make it simple.

Why shouldn't I celebrate the day when my Savior was miraculously born of a virgin, escaped death from Herod's decree, was given gifts by wise men who follwed a star to him... what part of this should I not have a special day set aside to reflect, give thanks, and praise God for the amazing way he brought his son into the world?

​​​

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