Howard Mooney - The Origin of Christmas

December 25th was originally a pagan festival. It was a time in which they celebrated the birth of Sol, or the return of the Sun on its northern journey. Most of the activities associated with Christmas have been carried over from that pagan holiday. It was not until the year 354 that the Catholic Church first associated the birth of Jesus with Dec. 25th. In so doing, they allowed the people to [have] the same day, and celebrated it in the same manner, only under a different name.

 

The following on Christmas is condensed data, found in the "New Standard Encyclopaedia." It gives more. Christmas: The festival commemorating the birth of Christ, observed in most countries on Dec. 25th. The term Christmas is derived from the Latin 'Christes masse' meaning Christ's mass. History: In the first few centuries of Christianity, there was no uniform celebration of the birth of Christ, because the exact date was unknown. Churches variously celebrated the event on Jan. 2, March 25, April 18, and May 20. The adoption of Dec. 25, as the birthday of Christ, was decreed by Bishop Liberius of Rome, in 354. This date was probably chosen because it coincided with the pagan festival of the winter solstice. The Romans observed Saturnalia, the feast of their god Saturn, at that time. The Germans, Gauls and Britons celebrated Brumalia on Dec. 25. The Norsemen held their Yule feasts between Dec. 25 and Jan. 6. Many of the customs of these festivals later on became a part of Christmas. In the Middle Ages, the Catholic Church opposed the traces of paganism, surviving in the popular Christmas customs, and counteracted by creating special Christmas masses. The Catholic Church also introduced the nativity plays, manger songs, and Christmas carols. During the restoration period in England, the puritans of New England, also forbade the celebration of Christmas. Origin of the customs: With the exception of Christmas greeting cards, which were first used in 1846, nearly all the holiday customs can be traced to a non-Christian origin. The Christmas tree, usually an evergreen, is derived from the Roman saturnalia, and the Norse worship trees. It was in Germany, in the sixteenth century, that the tree was first used as a symbol of Christmas. The custom was brought to England and the United States in the 19th Century. The mistletoe was the sacred plant of the druids, priests of ancient Britain Gaul. The Yule log symbolised protection against evil spirits, in the Norse festivals, Etc. Etc.


The above information is very enlightening. It helps one to understand how misleading the modern story of Christmas really is. It also gives one a glimpse of the great bondage, brought on the world, by the traditions of men. This should help us to appreciate, more fully, the glorious liberty we have in Christ. It should help us to keep from the spirit of hysteria that grips the world at this season. It also gives us a wonderful opportunity to let our light shine. When people can see that our homes and lives are different, from those in the world around us, it assures them that we have something better to live for. You might enjoy reading these notes, and it may answer some questions you may have. We have discussed this subject with a number of our friends and all seem to appreciate the information. In general, we have found that when our brethren learn the facts, of such things, they form their own conclusions and make their own separations. This is better than for us to lay down laws for them to abide by.