View Poll Results: What Holidays Do You Celebrate?

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  • I celebrate Christmas

    131 69.31%
  • I celebrate Easter

    117 61.90%
  • I celebrate Halloween

    12 6.35%
  • I celebrate all

    39 20.63%
  • I celebrate None - It's of the devil!

    24 12.70%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: Big Bubba - The Holidays Threads Merged

  1. #461
    true2yeshua Guest

    Default Should Chistians Have Christmas Trees?

    Should Christians Have Christmas Trees?
    - John MacArthur -

    As the Christmas Season approaches, questions like this sometimes arise. Like everything in life, it is important to approach these issues with biblical discernment.

    In this case, we see nothing wrong with the traditional Christmas tree. However, some have taught that it’s wrong for anyone to have a Christmas tree in their home. But are their reasons valid? We don’t think so. Let’s look at the two most common objections people make against having a Christmas tree.

    First, some object on the basis that Christmas trees have pagan origins. It is believed that Boniface, English missionary to Germany in the eighth century, instituted the first Christmas tree. He supposedly replaced sacrifices to the god Odin’s sacred oak with a fir tree adorned in tribute to Christ. But certain other accounts claim that Martin Luther introduced the Christmas tree lighted with candles. Based on that information you could say the Christmas tree has a distinguished Christian pedigree.

    However, even if a pagan background were clearly established, that wouldn’t necessarily mean we could not enjoy the use of a Christmas tree. Perhaps the following analogy will help.

    During World War II the American military used some remote South Pacific islands for temporary landing strips and supply depots. Prior to that time the indigenous tribal people had never seen modern technology up close. Large cargo planes swooped in filled with an array of material goods, and for the first time the islanders saw cigarette lighters (which they deemed to be miraculous), jeeps, refrigerators, radios, power tools, and many varieties of food.

    When the war was over, the islanders concluded that the men who brought cargo were gods, so they began building shrines to the cargo gods. They hoped the cargo gods would return with more goods.

    Most people do not even know about this religious superstition. Similarly, few know anything about the worship of trees. When a child pulls a large present out from under the Christmas tree and unwraps a large model cargo plane, no one views that object as an idol. Nor do we view the Christmas tree to be some kind of gift god. We understand the difference between a toy and an idol just as clearly as we understand the difference between an idol and a Christmas tree. We see no valid reason to make any connection between Christmas trees and wooden idols or the worship of trees. Those who insist on making such associations should take note of the warnings in Scripture against judging one another in doubtful things (see Romans 14 & 1 Corinthians 10:23-33).

    Another common objection is the claim that Christmas trees are prohibited in Scripture. Jeremiah 10 is commonly used to support this viewpoint. But a closer look at the passage will show that it has nothing to do with Christmas trees and everything to do with idol worship. Verse eight says, “A wooden idol is a worthless doctrine.”

    Idol worship was a clear violation of the Ten Commandments. Exodus 20:3-6 says, “You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.”

    There is no connection between the worship of idols and the use of Christmas trees. We should not be anxious about baseless arguments against Christmas decorations. Rather, we should be focused on the Christ of Christmas and giving all diligence to remembering the real reason for the season.

  2. #462
    Emily Ruth Guest

    Default

    There is no connection between the worship of idols and the use of Christmas trees. We should not be anxious about baseless arguments against Christmas decorations. Rather, we should be focused on the Christ of Christmas and giving all diligence to remembering the real reason for the season.
    Agreed! The amount of unnecessary heartache - especially for children of parents who have not prayerfully looked at the scriptural freedoms from legalism - is sad.

  3. #463
    Sing4Him Guest

    Default

    Great article.

  4. #464
    Racheal59 Guest

    Default

    We stopped the Christmas tree thing years ago.

  5. #465
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    southeastern Oklahoma
    Posts
    2,929

    Default

    All I can say to the article is "Amen."

  6. #466
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Fairbanks Alaska
    Posts
    14,762

    Default Christmas trees

    This Christian should have a Christmas tree in his home. It is beautiful, it is fun, and for about a month, it becomes a visual reminder in my home that Jesus died for our sins, so that we might have life, and have it to the fullest. Thank you Jesus.
    Tall Timbers

  7. #467
    CelticMist Guest

    Default

    A tree is nothing... too many put too much in someone having a tree.... because it was originally from the Pagan holiday. If they question the tree.... then they better question the actually time of year for "Christmas", "Easter", and all other "holidays" that formed out from the Pagan holidays of old.

    Are these that question whether or not to have a "tree" valid or just so trivial that it causes divison within the Body of Believers?

    I choose NOT to have a tree... but it is NOT because of a once pagan custom. I've opt out cause I would rather have the manger displayed in my house for the Christmas season. My little baby Jesus doesn't appear until the day of Christmas... and remains in the manger through New Year's. I don't think God is going to use a simple displaying of a Christmas tree or lights ... to keep folks from coming to His kingdom.

    Why are so many people so hung up on "customs" and where they original came from? Its what is in the hearts... during this time of year. If you celebrate His birth... or not. I choose to celebrate the birth of our Savior.... without even giving thought to "customs".

  8. #468
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    So. Cal.
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    5,311

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by true2yeshua View Post

    There is no connection between the worship of idols and the use of Christmas trees. We should not be anxious about baseless arguments against Christmas decorations. Rather, we should be focused on the Christ of Christmas and giving all diligence to remembering the real reason for the season.
    Great article!!

  9. #469
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    2,013

    Default

    i haven't put my tree out this year but only because i haven't felt like it (my #1 cat was put down 3wks ago) and since then i've been kinda bummed

    today i'm going to get our nativity out though & put some lights around it
    "without Jesus my life on earth would be like listening to a neverending Fleetwood Mac song" BB

    -------------------------- To Live Is To Die --------------------------

  10. #470
    Biblenuggetlady Guest

    Default

    I am decorating my palm tree instead this year....hahaha I am putting my "names of Jesus" ornaments only-on it. The palm branches are a symbol of "victory in Christ"-so I now have a witnessing tool should anyone come by. I needed to start my own traditions this year and this is my first one.

  11. #471
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Washington
    Posts
    1,058

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    ^^ I* love your new custom Biblenugget!! WHat a NEAT idea....

    We just got our tree last night; it looks so festive in the family room now.. And all my snowmen in the livingroom.. I love snowmen. Having a difficult time finding a nativity this year.. My kids' lost some of our pieces and now i need to find a new one.. Although they still play with it all the time and add in their own guys for the ones missing.

  12. #472
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Houston, Texas, just moved
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    3,455

    Default The Message of Mistletoe

    http://altadenabaptist.org/messenger...20061218.shtml

    The Message of Mistletoe
    Pastor George Van Alstine

    I once was a Christmas purist. As a young pastor, I thought it was important for us to remove all the pagan and commercial elements from our celebration of Jesus’ birthday so the truth of the gospel could be seen clearly.

    Of course, all the modern Christmas fables would have to go, like Rudolph and Frosty and the Grinch. Santa, his elves and reindeer were a tradition formed out of numerous pre-Christmas pagan elements, even though the old guy had been “baptized” with the name of an obscure medieval saint. The Christmas Tree was adopted from northern European tree-worship cults, some of them even involving human sacrifices. The very date of Christmas, December 25, was originally a pagan Roman holiday. One by one, some of my favorite Christmas impressions became suspect and finally fell to my puritanical axe.

    Finally, even the authentic Christmas story itself had to be carefully examined. Were there three wise men? The Bible gives no number. In our Christmas pageants, how can we have them stand next to the Bethlehem manger alongside of the shepherds, when they actually visited Jesus up to two years later, probably in Nazareth? When Martin Luther wrote the familiar carol “Away in a Manger,” why did he say of the Baby Jesus, “no crying he makes”? Did Luther think it is sinful for a baby to cry and that the sinless Jesus could never cry? The Christmas purist must be theologically accurate.

    I had been on this purifying-Christmas journey for only about two years when I realized that it was a dead-end approach. Rather than making Christmas more wonderful, I was robbing it of its glory. Over the years since, I have come to realize that the true meaning of Christmas is not so puny that all these other seasonal legends and traditions can obscure it. Instead, the true meaning of Christmas is so powerful and robust that it can infuse even pagan and commercial elements with spiritual meaning. So now I see the Baby Jesus as “infecting” Rudolph, Santa, Christmas Trees and old pagan traditions, rather than the other way around.

    Mistletoe is the final test case. This plant, that lives off the branches of other trees, was considered holy by the Druids long before Christianity came to England. The Scandinavians and Germans also included it in their pagan worship. Its magical/medicinal properties were believed to be effective with everything from epilepsy to fertility. The mistletoe plant is parasitic, living by sucking the juices out of a hardwood tree, sometimes killing its host. Where does the name “mistletoe” come from? “Mist” means dung, excrement, and “toe” is short for “twig.” The plant’s seed looks like a bird-dropping on a branch, and later a twig grows from it into an entire parasitic plant. So those who named it saw it as the bird-poop plant.

    All this kissing-under-the-mistletoe stuff is based on a legend of the Norse god Baldur’s tragic death by a sharpened sprig of mistletoe. The love of the other gods was enough to renew his life, and the kissing symbolizes this. A number of northern European tribes built from this the use of mistletoe as an excuse for a bit of naughty flirting.

    Most old pagan traditions that are part of Christmas have subsequently been given Christian meaning. The Christmas Tree is an evergreen, so it reminds us of everlasting life. The holly adds red berries to the evergreen leaves, and this speaks of the blood of Jesus. The ancient human fascination with astrology gave way to the Star of Bethlehem, and now all the decorative stars we see at Christmas remind us of Jesus, the Light of the World.

    But mistletoe is hopeless. I have not been able to discover any tradition that has been able to Christianize this plant in any way. It just hangs there at Christmas as a stubborn pagan leftover.

    And yet, I’m ready today to claim even mistletoe for Christmas. This life-sucking parasite reminds me that I am totally dependant on the grace and love of Jesus, having no spiritual life without him. The fact that mistletoe is named after bird-droppings reminds me of Paul’s description of his human accomplishments without Jesus as “rubbish” (Philippians 3:8). That’s the polite English translation; Martin Luther put it more graphically in his German translation: ein haufen mist (“a pile of manure”—“mist”/“mistletoe”; get it?)

    Even the kissing fits in. Jesus came in the flesh—in the real flesh. This is how the Savior pours his life into the needy parasite. He redeems the praying part of me, but he also redeems the kissing part of me. He renews me, body and soul.

    So mistletoe has its place in the Nativity scene, maybe hanging from the eaves of the stable roof. It represents me, the parasitic fleshly me whom the Baby Jesus came to save.

  13. #473
    Emily Ruth Guest

    Default

    I heard a great analogy by Adrian Rogers about the Christmas tree in the Christian's lives.
    He said that the Christmas tree - while being an 'ever green' which means that they don't die off in the winter and they are forever green - is a symbol of our eternal spirit.
    Then, he said that for Christmas, we chop it down and carry it into the house and give it water.

    That tree is now removed from its source that gives it life and while we are giving it water to stave off its death - it is still, never the less, dying.

    The lost are decendents of Adam - which means we are destined to death because we were cut off from fellowship with God. We appear to be alive in this life but, are really dying. Just like the decorated Christmas tree 'looks' alive but it's days are numbered.

    When we are born again - brought to us by the birth of Jesus - which we celebrate at Christmas - we are rejoined through Him as our mediator and savior - to the vine of life and live through Him.

    I thought that was a cool explanation.

  14. #474

    Default

    I agree with others that think it was a good, balanced article on the issue.
    And Jesus said to her, Neither do I condemn you: go, and sin no more. (John 8:11b, NKJV)
    Marvel not that I said to you, You must be born again. -Jesus (John 3:7, NKJV)

  15. #475
    4given Guest

    Default I will always have a tree in my house

    When the Angel goes on top there is no doubt as to what th tree represents in my house.

    And personally I could care a less what the pagans think or worship as long as they keep their distance from me and my family.

    As for me and my house we shall serve the Lord Jesus Christ and our Christmas time celebration of his birth in my opinion has nothing to do with a pagan calender since there are no pagans in my home or family, nor are they welcome. If you are atheiest, or etc.. you are not welcome at my Christmas celebration.

  16. #476
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    1,569

    Default

    In sincerely think it is wonderful so many of you can keep this "holy day" Christ centered and enjoy it so much. I wish that I could, but it is something that I've struggled with since childhood.

    My family did not start going to church and I wasn't saved until I was 7. Christmas was always about Santa and presents and I don't remember Christmas even including Christ until I was 7. I hated Santa Claus, because I was afraid of him and actually was pleased to find out in my early childhood that he wasn't real. I told my little sister and she begged me to keep it a secret from mom and dad so we wouldn't get less presents. My mom always had to make a big deal every year about the tree, baking and Christmas cards. Oh, the tree had to be perfect...forget my sister and I helping. I think we did a few years, but then she got into buying fancy decorations and had to have a theme tree. We ate so much every year that I gained a ton of weight and was sick every holidy (literally puking). And if my mom sent a Christmas card and didn't get one back from someone, it was the end of the world and that person was off her friendship list for sure. Yeah, these are my childhood memories of Christmas and the tree.

    Fastfoward to high school. I worked in retail starting in the mid 90's. Enough said? That's enough to ruin Christmas for anyone. It's amazing how people act around that time of the year.

    Then when I learned of all the pagan origins of Christmas, that did me in. I didn't want any part of the holiday anymore. I also became bothered with the mysticism/magical aspect of the season and it still gets to me that Christians and non-Christains both celebrate the day in virtually identical way. It helped that I work a job that is open 24/7/365 so I didn't have to make any excuses to avoid family functions. I will admit, I had a falling out with my mother at about the same time which helped the decision. This was the wrong reason I know. I also admit that I took it to the extreme and became very judgmental and bitter towards those who celebrated the day. I've come around though and I know in my heart that there are many people that can sincerely celebrate this day in the Lord Jesus, I'm just not one of them yet. I still struggle every year.

    My husband and I since having children have decided to approach the day cautiously and Christ centered. We don't have a tree or lights, but we do have a Nativity (the "Little People" one since our kids are so young ) Our tradition so far has been to go to Church Christmas Eve, come home to a nice meal, read the Christmas story, and the kids get one gift each. When the kids are older and are more understanding we've talked about celebrating/forming new traditions around Hanukka (sp?) instead. In fact, I think it would be neat to observe every Jewish feast in some way with my kids. Even though most Jews are blind to it, Christ is centered in every one of those "holy days".

    Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukka everyone!

  17. #477
    jean Guest

    Default

    I live in a place where children,do not even have sleepers.In every occasion, most especially christmas,It is so difficult to adorn our house,with christmas decors,if you know that there is someone in the niegborhood,who do not have food to eat(the reason perhaps why there are so much burglary).But it is tempting to decor especially if the non-christian nieghbors,intentionally beautify their home,to compete.I thank the Lord we get rid of the temptation.What we do,i cook food,and aportion them to our poor neighbors,on the eve of the 25th and since it is very noisy and the air is filled with firecrackers' smoke,we celebrate the christmas eve,in prayer and food to thank God for,our many blessings brought about by His saving us when He came on earth with the whole family checked in a hotel,living our house without a light,as if it is not christmas(According to the mold of this world),our house is not "in" during christmas.But i know deep down my heart we celebrated christmas.There's a year i remember,that adorned houses in our place with the beautiful decors inside and out,have been the target of bulglary. The reason why my son look forward to christmas,not only will he recieve a gift from mommy and daddy,but he will be able to enjoy what we are entitled to enjoy only in Christmas,and i see to it that our son know that it is the Lord's goodness that causesth us to enjoy those beautiful things.

  18. #478
    light4mypath Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Biblenuggetlady View Post
    I am decorating my palm tree instead this year....hahaha I am putting my "names of Jesus" ornaments only-on it. The palm branches are a symbol of "victory in Christ"-so I now have a witnessing tool should anyone come by. I needed to start my own traditions this year and this is my first one.
    What a neat idea!

  19. #479
    Racheal59 Guest

    Default

    A tree is not an idol to worship as they worshipped idols in the biblical days of before Jesus time and during. I don't think we worship trees. If you love to have the smell of pine in your house and decorate it.......I think that' just fine We just do dont it because we lost our family that's all. Good memories just continue to rip our hearts out that's all. So having a tree and decorating it is no difference than decorating your house with draperies and the like. IMHO

  20. #480
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Houston, Texas, just moved
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    Of course you have to do what you have to do. When my sister died, my other sister went over and put up a tree for my mom. She told her that my sister loved Christmas and she would be disappointed if my mom did not have a tree. I am not saying that things are the same. Christmas Dinner is scaled down alot from before my sister died. But, getting together for Christmas Day helps us. It is getting harder to put the tree up at my place,and I have to take a pain pill afterwards, but I so love having a Christmas tree. I hope when I am no longer physically able, my kids will put one up for me.

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