The Plain Truth About December 25th


    Where did the world get December 25? ... from the Scripture, or paganism?

    Here are the astonishing facts which may shock you! Test yourself. How much do you know of the origin of the December 25th tree -- of "Santa Claus" -- of the mistletoe -- of the holly wreath -- of the custom of exchanging gifts?

    WHEN I was a very little, I was taught to hang up my stockings on the night before December 25th eve. When I awakened the next morning, they were filled with small toys and sacks or little boxes of candy and nuts. And beside the mantle, from which my stockings hung, a December 25th tree had suddenly appeared, decorated with shiny tinsel. And on it hung presents. Other presents for us children were piled on the floor underneath. I was told Santa Claus had come down the chimney during the night and left all these things.

    But did I question what my parents had told me? Of course not. I accepted it -- took it all for granted. Didn't you?

    Stop and think a moment! Very few have ever reflected on why they believe what they do -- why they follow the customs they do, or from where those customs came. We were born into a world filled with customs. We grew up accepting them without question.

    Why? Sheep instinct? Well, not exactly.

    But by nature we do tend to follow the crowd, whether right or wrong. Sheep follow others to the slaughter. Humans ought to check up where they are going.

    How -- when did December 25th originate for the birth of the Messiah?

    Does December 25th really celebrate the birthday of Messiah? Was the Saviour born on December 25th?

    Did the original apostles, who knew our Saviour personally and were taught by Him, celebrate His birthday on December 25th? Did they celebrate it at all?

    If December 25th is the chief of the Religious holidays, why do so many non-Religious observe it? Do you know?

    Why do people exchange presents with family members, friends, relatives, at at this time of year? Was it because the wise men presented gifts to the Messiah-child? The answer may surprise you.

    Most people have "supposed" a lot of things about this holiday that are not true. But let's quit "supposing" and get the facts!

    What Encyclopedias Say

    The word "Messiahmas" means "Mass of Messiah," or, as it came to be shortened, “Messiah-Mass." It came to non-Religionist and Protestants from the Roman Catholic's. And where did they get it? NOT from Matthew-Revelation -- NOT from the Scripture -- NOT from the original apostles who were personally instructed by Messiah -- but it gravitated in the fourth century into the Roman Religion from paganism.

    Since the celebration of December 25th has come to the world from the Roman Catholic Religion, and has no authority but that of the Roman Catholic Religion, let us examine the Catholic Encyclopedia, 1911 edition, published by that church. Under the heading "Christmas," you will find:

    "Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the Church ... the first evidence of the feast is from Egypt." "Pagan customs centering around the January calends gravitated to Christmas."

    And in the same encyclopedia, under the heading "Natal Day," we find that the early Catholic father, Origen, acknowledged this truth: "... In the Scriptures, no one is recorded to have kept a feast or held a great banquet on his birthday. It is only sinners [like Pharaoh and Herod] who make great rejoicings over the day in which they were born into this world" (emphasis ours).

    Encyclopedia Britannica, 1946 edition, has this: "Christmas (i.e., the Mass of Messiah) .... Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the church ...."It was not instituted by Messiah or the apostles, or by Bible authority. It was picked up afterward from paganism. The Encyclopedia Americana, 1944 edition, says: "Christmas .... It was, according to many authorities, not celebrated in the first centuries of the Christian church, as the Christian usage in general was to celebrate the death of remarkable persons rather than their birth ...." (The "Communion," which is instituted by New Testament Bible authority, is a memorial of the death of Messiah.) "... A feast was established in memory of this event [Messiah's birth] inthe fourth century. In the fifth century the Western Church ordered it to be celebrated forever on the day of the old Roman feast of the birth of Sol, as no certain knowledge of the day of Messiah's birth existed."
    Now notice! These recognized historical authorities show December 25th was not observed by the Brethren for the first two or three hundred years -- a period longer than the entire history of the United States as a nation! It got into the Western, or Roman, Religion, by the fourth century A.D. It was not until the fifth century that the Roman Religion ordered it to be celebrated as an official Religious festival!

    The Messiah Not Born December 25th

    (Messiah was not even born in the winter season! When the Messiah- child was born "there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night" (Luke 2:8). This never could have occurred in Judaea in the month of December. The shepherds always brought their flocks from the mountainsides and fields and corralled them not later than October 15, to protect them from the cold, rainy season that followed that date. Notice that the Scripture itself proves, in Song of Solomon 2:11 and Ezra 10:9, 13, that winter was a rainy season not permitting shepherds to abide in open fields at night.

    "It was an ancient custom among Jews of those days to send out their sheep to the fields and deserts about the Passover (early spring), and bring them home at commencement of the first rain," says the Adam Clarke Commentary (Vol. 5, page 370, New York ed.)

    Continuing, this authority states: "During the time they were out, the shepherds watched them night and day. As ... the first rain began early in the month of Marchesvan, which answers to part of our October and November [begins sometime in October], we find that the sheep were kept out in the open country during the whole summer. And, as these shepherds had not yet brought home their flocks, it is a presumptive argument that October had not yet commenced, and that, consequently, our Saviour was not born on the 25th of December, when no flocks were out in the fields; nor could He have been born later than September or early October, as the flocks were still in the fields by night. On this very ground, the nativity in December should be given up. Thefeeding of the flocks by night in the fields is a chronological fact ... See the quotations from the Talmudists in Lightfoot.”

    Any encyclopedia, or any other authority, will tell you that Messiah was not born on December 25. The Catholic Encyclopedia frankly states this fact.
    The exact date of the Saviour's birth is entirely unknown, as all authorities acknowledge -- though if I had space in this study I could show you scriptures which at least strongly indicate it was in the early fall -- probably early October approximately six months after Passover.

    If Yahvah had wished us to observe and celebrate Messiah's birthday, He would not have made it hard for us to understand the exact date.


    How This Pagan Custom Got into the Assembly

    Then how did this pagan custom creep into the Western Religious world?

    The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge explains it clearly, in its article on "Christmas": "How much the date of the festival depended upon the pagan Brumalia (Dec. 25) following the Saturnalia (Dec. 17-24), and celebrating the shortest day of the year and the 'new sun' ... cannot be accurately determined. The pagan Saturnalia and Brumalia were too deeply entrenched in popular custom to be set aside by Christian influence .... The pagan festival with its riot and merrymaking was so popular that Christians were glad of an excuse to continue its celebration with little change in spirit and in manner. Christian preachers of the West and the Near East protested against the unseemly frivolity with which Christ's birthday was celebrated, while Christians of Mesopotamia accused their Western brethren of idolatry and sun worship for adopting as Christian this pagan festival."

    Remember, the Roman world had been pagan. Prior to the fourth century, the Brethren were few in number, though increasing, and were persecuted by the government and by pagans. But, with the advent of Constantine as emperor, who made his profession of Messiah in the fourth century, placing the worshipping of the Messiah on an equal footing with paganism, people of the Roman world began to accept this now-popular worship of the Messiah. by the hundreds of thousands.
    But remember, these people had grown up in pagan customs, chief of which was this idolatrous festival of December 25th. It was a festival of merrymaking, with its special spirit. They enjoyed it! They didn't want to give it up! Now this same article in the New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge explains how the recognition by Constantine of Sunday, which had been the day of pagan sun worship, and how the influence of the pagan Manichaeism, which identified the SON of the Almighty with the physical SUN, gave these pagans of the fourth century, now turning over wholesale to "Christianity," their excuse for calling their pagan-festival date of December 25th (birthday of the SUN-deity), the birthday of the SON of the Almighty.

    And that is how "December 25th" became fastened on our Western world! We may call it by another name, but it's the same old pagan sun-worshipping festival still! The only change is in what we call it! You can call a rabbit a "lion," but it's still a rabbit, just the same.

    Again from the Encyclopaedia Britannica: "Certain Latins, as early as 354, may have transferred the birthday from January 6th to December 25, which was then a Mithraic feast ... or birthday of the unconquered SUN ... The Syrians and Armenians, who clung to January 6th, accused the Romans of sun worship and idolatry, contending ... that the feast of December 25th, had been invented by disciples of Cerinthus ...."

    The Real Orgin of December 25th

    But if we got the festival of December 25th from the Roman Catholics, and they got it from paganism, where did the pagans get it? Where, when, and what was its real origin?

    It is a chief custom of the corrupt system denounced all through Scriptural prophecies and teachings under the name of Babylon. And it started and originated in the original Babylon of ancient Nimrod! Yes, it stems from roots whose beginning was shortly this side of the Flood!

    Nimrod, grandson of Ham, son of Noah, was the real founder of the Babylonish system that has gripped the world ever since -- the system of organized competition -- of man -- ruled governments and empires, based upon the competitive and profit-making economic system. Nimrod built the tower of Babel, the original Babylon, ancient Nineveh, and many other cities. He organized this world's first kingdom. The name Nimrod, in Hebrew, is derived from "Marad," meaning "he rebelled."

    From many ancient writings, considerable is learned of this man, who started the great organized worldly apostasy from Yahvah that has dominated this world until now. Nimrod was so evil, it is said he married his own mother, whose name was Semiramis. After Nimrod's untimely death, his so-called mother-wife, Semiramis, propagated the evil doctrine of the survival of Nimrod as a spirit being. She claimed a full-grown evergreen tree sprang overnight from a dead tree stump, which symbolized the springing forth unto new life of the dead Nimrod. On each anniversary of his birth, she claimed, Nimrod would visit the evergreen tree and leave gifts upon it. December 25th was the birthday of Nimrod. This is the real origin of the December 25thtree.

    Through her scheming and designing, Semiramis became the Babylonian "Queen of Heaven," and Nimrod, under various names, became the "divine son of heaven." Through the generations, in this idolatrous worship, Nimrod also became the false Messiah, son of Baal the Sun-deity. In this false Babylonish system, the "Mother and Child" (Semiramis and Nimrod reborn) became chief objects of worship. This worship of "Mother and Child" spread over the world. The names varied in different countries and languages. In Egypt it was Isis and Osiris. In Asia, Cybele and Deoius. In pagan Rome, Fortuna and Jupiterpuer. Even in Greece, China, Japan, Tibet is to be found the counterpart of the Madonna, long before the birth ofMessiah!

    Thus, during the fourth and fifth centuries, when the pagans of the Roman world were "accepting" the new popular "worship of the Messiah" by the hundreds of thousands, carrying their old pagan customs and beliefs along with them, merely cloaking them with Religious-sounding names, the Madonna and "Mother and Child" idea also became popularized, especially at December 25th time. Every December season you'll hear sung and chanted dozens of times the hymn "Silent Night, Holy Night," with its familiar "Mother and Child" theme. We, who have been born in such a babylonish world, reared and steeped in these things all our lives, have been taught to revere these things as righteous and sacred. We never questioned to see where they came from -- whether they camefrom Scripture, or from pagan idolatry!

    We are shocked to learn the truth -- some, unfortunately, take offense at the plain truth! But Yahvah commands His faithful ministers, "Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression!" Shocking as these facts are, they are the plain facts of history and the Scripture!

    The real origin of December 25th goes back to ancient Babylon. It is bound up in the organized apostasy which has gripped a deceived world these many centuries! In Egypt, it was always believed that the son of Isis (Egyptian name for "Queen of Heaven") was born December 25th. Paganism celebrated this famous birthday over most of the known world for centuries before the birth of the Messiah.

    .December 25th is NOT the birthday of Yahvahosha the true Messiah! The apostles and early true Assembly never celebrated Messiah's birthday at any time. There is no command or instruction to celebrate it in the Scripture -- rather, the celebrating of birthdays is a pagan, not a Religious custom, believe it or not!

    Thus the ancient idolatrous "Chaldean Mysteries," founded by this wife of Nimrod, have been handed down through the pagan religions under new Religious-sounding names.

    Origin of Holly Wreath, Mistletoe, Yule Log

    Now where did we get this mistletoe custom? Among the ancient pagans the mistletoe was used at this festival of the winter solstice because it was considered sacred to the sun, because of its supposed miraculous healing power. The pagan custom of kissing under the mistletoe was an early step in the night of revelry and drunken debauchery -- celebrating the death of the "old sun" and the birth of the new at the winter solstice. Mistletoe, sacred in pagan festivals, is a parasite!
    Holly berries were also considered sacred to the sun-deity. The yule log is in reality the "sun log." "Yule" means "wheel," a pagan symbol of the sun. Yet today professing Brethren speak of the "sacred yule-tide season!”

    Even the lighting of fires and candles as a Religious ceremony is merely a continuation of the pagan custom, encouraging the waning sun-deity as he reached the lowest place in the southern skies!

    The Encyclopedia Americana says: "The holly, the mistletoe, the Yule log ... are relics of pre-Christian times." Of paganism!

    The book "Answers to Questions", compiled by Frederick J. Haskins, found in public libraries, says: "The use of Christmas wreaths is believed by authorities to be traceable to the pagan customs of decorating buildings and places of worship at the feast which took place at the same time as Christmas. The Christmas tree is from Egypt, and its origin dates from a period long anterior to the Christian Era."

    Yes, and Even Santa Claus

    But surely dear old Santa Claus is not a creature of pagan birth? But he is, and his real character is not so benevolent and righteous as many suppose!

    The name "Santa Claus" is a corruption of the name "St. Nicholas," a Roman Catholic bishop who lived in the 5th century. Look in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, volume 19, pages 648-649, 11th edition, where you'll read: "St. Nicholas, bishop of Myra, a saint honored by the Greeks and Latins on the 6th of December .... A legend of his surreptitious bestowal of dowries on the three daughters of an impoverished citizen ... is said to have originated the old custom of giving presents in secret on the Eve of St. Nicholas [Dec. 6], subsequently transferred to Christmas day. Hence the association of Christmas with Santa Claus.” ...."

    Through the year, parents punish their children for telling falsehoods. Then, at December 25th time, they themselves tell their little children this "Santa Claus" lie! Is it any wonder many of them, when they grow up and learn the truth, begin to believe Yahvah is a myth, too?

    One little fellow, sadly disillusioned about "Santa Claus," said to a playmate, "Yes, and I'm going to look into this 'Messiah' business, too!" Is it Religious to teach children myths and falsehoods? Yahvah says, "Thou shalt not bear false witness!" It may seem right, and be justified by human reason, but Yahvah says, "There is a way that seemeth right to a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death!" "Old Nick" also is a term for the devil! Is there a connection? Satan appears as an "messenger of light," to deceive! (II Cor. 11:14; Rev. 12:9.)

    And so when we examine the facts, we are astonished to learn that the practice of observing December 25th is not, after all, a true Religious practice, but a pagan custom -- one of the ways of Babylon our people have fallen into!

    What the Scripture Says About The December 25th Tree

    But if the Scripture is silent about telling us to observe December 25th, or recording any such observance by the apostles or early true Assembly, it does have something to say about the December 25th tree!

    This will come as a real surprise to many. But here it is:
    Jeremiah 10:2-6: "Thus saith Yahvah, Learn not the way of the heathen .... For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not."

    There is a perfect description of the December 25th tree, termed by the Eternal as "the way of the heathen -- the customs of the people." We are commanded not to learn that way or follow it! It is also viewed in this passage as idolatry. The fifth verse shows that these trees cannot speak -- cannot walk -- must be carried. "Be not afraid of them; for they [the trees] cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good." They are not deities to be feared. Some people misread this to make it say there is no harm in having a December 25th tree, but that is not what it says.

    Isn't Exchanging Gifts Scriptural?

    But when it comes to the most important part of all in this December 25th observance -- the December shopping season -- the buying and exchanging of gifts -- many will exclaim triumphantly, "Well, at least the Scripture tells us to do that! Didn't the wise men give gifts when Messiah was born?"

    Again, we are due for some surprises, when we learn the plain truth. First, let's look at the historic origin of trading gifts back and forth, then see exactly what the Scripture does say about it.

    From the Bibliotheca Sacra, volume 12, pages 153-155, we quote: "The interchange of presents between friends is alike characteristic of Christmas and the Saturnalia, and must have been adopted by Christians from the Pagans, as the admonition of Tertullian plainly shows."

    The fact is, this custom fastened upon people of exchanging gifts with friends and relatives at the December season has not a single trace of of honoring the Messiah about it, strange though that may seem! This does not celebrate Messiah's birthday nor honor it or Him! Suppose someone you love has a birthday. You want to honor that person on his or her birthday. Would you lavishly buy gifts for everyone else, trading gifts back and forth with all your other friends and loved ones, but ignore completely any gift for the one whose birthday you are honoring? Rather absurd, when viewed in that light, isn't it?

    Yet this is exactly what people the world over are doing! They honor a day that is not Messiah's birthday by spending every dime they can scrape together in buying presents to trade back and forth among friends and relatives. But I can say by years of experience, as I believe most pastors and ministers can say, that when the month of December rolls around, nearly all professing Brethren forget to give gifts to Messiah and His cause almost altogether! December often is the most difficult month to keep Messiah's work from dying! People are too busy trading gifts back and forth among themselves to think of Him and His Work, it seems. Then, in January and even into February it seems they have to catch up from what they spent for December 25th, so they seldom get back to normal in supporting Messiah and His Work before March!

    Now consider what the Scripture says about the wise men giving gifts when Messiah was born. It is in Matthew 2:1-11. "Now when Yahvahosha was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? ... And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto HIM gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh."

    Why Gifts Presented to Messiah

    Notice, they inquired for the child Yahvahosha, who was born KING of the Jews! Now why did they present gifts to Him? Because it was His birthday? Not at all, because they came several days or weeks after the date of His birth! Was it to set an example for us, today, to trade gifts back and forth among ourselves? No, notice carefully! They did not exchange gifts among themselves, but "they presented unto HIM gifts." They gave their gifts to Christ, not to their friends, relatives, or one another!

    Why? Let me quote from the Adam Clarke Commentary, volume 5, page 46: "Verse 11. (They presented unto him gifts.) The people of the east never approach the presence of kings and great personages, without a present in their hands. The custom is often noticed in the Old Testament, and still prevails in the east, and in some of the newly discovered South Sea Islands."

    There it is! They were not instituting a new Religious custom of exchanging gifts with friends to honor Messiah's birthday. They were following an old and ancient eastern custom of presenting gifts to a king when they came into his presence. They were approaching Him, born KING of the Jews, in person. Therefore custom required they present gifts even as the Queen of Sheba brought gifts to Solomon -- even as many people today take a gift along when they visit the White House for an appointment with the President.

    No, the custom of trading gifts back and forth does not stem from this scriptural incident at all, but rather, as quoted from history above, it is the continuance of an ancient pagan custom. Instead of honoring Messiah, it invariably retards His Work, often sets it back, at the December 25th season every year.

    Does It Really Honor Messiah?

    Now come two arguments often used to justify December 25th observance.

    1) Many will reason this way: "But, even though the exact date of Yahvahosha's birth is unknown, should we not select some date to celebrate as His birthday?" The answer is positively no! Did you not notice the statement quoted from the Catholic Encyclopedia: "Sinners alone, not saints, celebrate their birthdays." The celebration of birthdays is not a Christian, but a pagan custom, observed by sinners!

    2) But, many still reason, "Even so -- even though December 25th was a pagan custom, honoring the false sun-god, we don't observe it to honor the false deity, we observe it to honor Messiah."

    But how does YAHVAH answer in His Word? "Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them [the pagans in their customs] ... that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their deities? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto Yahvah thy Eternal: for every abomination to the Eternal, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods" (Deut. 12:30-31).

    Yahvah says plainly in His Instruction Book to us, that He will not accept that kind of worship, even though intended in His honor. To Him, He says, it is offering what is abominable to Him, and therefore it honors, not Him, but false pagan deities. YAHVAH says we must not worship Him according to the "dictates of our own conscience" -- a term we often hear. But Yahvahosha said plainly, "Yahvah is a spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth" (John 4:24). And what is truth? Yahvah's Word -- the Scripture -- said Yahvahosha, is truth (John 17:17); and the Scripture says Yahvah will not accept worship when people take a pagan custom or manner of worship and try to honor Messiah with it.

    Again, Yahvahosha said: "In vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men" (Matt. 15:9). December 25th observance is a tradition of men, and the commandments of Yahvah, as quoted, forbid it. Yahvahosha said, further, "full well ye reject the commandment of Yahvah, that ye may keep your own tradition."

    That is precisely what the millions are doing today. They ignore the commandment of Yahvah. He commands, regarding taking the customs of the pagans and using them to honor or worship Yahvah: "Thou shalt not do so unto Yahvah thy Eternal." Still, most people today take that command of Yahvah lightly, or as having no validity whatsoever, and follow the tradition of men in observing December 25th.

    Make no mistake! Yahvah will allow you to defy and disobey Him. He will allow you to follow the crowd and the traditions of men. He will allow you to sin. But He also says there is a day of reckoning coming. As you sow, so shall you reap! Yahvahosha was the living Word of Yahvah in Person, and the Scripture is the written Word of Yahvah. And we shall be judged, for eternity, by these words! They should not be taken lightly or ignored.

    We're in Babylon, and Haven't Known It

    December 35th has become a commercial season. It's sponsored, kept alive, by the heaviest retail advertising campaigns of the year. You see a masqueraded "Santa Claus" in many stores. Ads keep us deluded and deceived about the "beautiful December 25th spirit." The newspapers, who sell the ads, print flowery editorials exalting and eulogizing the pagan season, and its "spirit." A gullible people has become so inoculated, many take offense when told the truth. But the "December 25th spirit" is created each year, not to honor Messiah, but to sell merchandise! Like all Satan's delusions, it appears as an "angel of light," is made to appear good. Billions of dollars are spent in this merchandising spree every year, while the cause of Messiah must suffer! It's part of the economic system of Babylon!

    We have professed to be A Religious nations, but we're in Babylon, as Scriptural prophecy foretold, and we don't know it! "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues" -- now soon to fall -- is the warning of Revelation 18:4.

    This year, instead of gift trading, why not put that money into Yahvah's Work?



  • Crystal Roeden
    Crystal Roeden That passage right there would be the reason I would stop observing the 25th as the Lord's birth if I thought it would shake your faith. But then if it did, your faith would not truly be in the Lord. The passage you quoted speaks of the Ashtoreth pole...  more
    December 15, 2020 - Report
  • Apostle T
    Apostle T Sis. Roden, the Ashtoreth pole is not decorated like that at all. The Ashtoreth pole was were their Deity was. This is taking about something else. And it was a tree that they cut from the forest, they put the decorations on it, they fastened wood on the...  more
    December 16, 2020 - Report
  • Crystal Roeden
    Crystal Roeden I find no fault in your position on this. I have no guilty conscience regarding showing homage to the Lord any time of year. One day the tree of life will be available to the nations once more for the healing of their bodies. We shall agree to...  more
    December 17, 2020 - Report
  • Apostle T
    Apostle T I will only say this in closing. When we follow the traditions of man, and not what thus says the Almighty or the Scriptures then we are in error. When we know by reading Ency, books, and other things that He was never born Dec 25th, then we have a...  more
    December 18, 2020 - Report