Aside from what would be obvious holiday fatigue, the reason I don’t celebrate Christmas is of no surprise. It’s a little known fact (and one that many choose to ignore) is that Christmas has nothing to do with Jesus’ birth nor is it a bible teaching. Like Halloween, Christmas is a pagan holiday mixed with christian sentiments to attract people to the Church.
History of The Christmas Customs
- Celebrating Jesus’ birthday: “The early Christians did not celebrate [Jesus’] birth because they considered the celebration of anyone’s birth to be a pagan custom.”—The World Book Encyclopedia.
- December 25: There is no proof that Jesus was born on that date. Church leaders likely chose this date to coincide with pagan festivals held on or around the winter solstice.
- Gift-giving, feasting, partying: The Encyclopedia Americana says: “Saturnalia, a Roman feast celebrated in mid-December, provided the model for many of the merry-making customs of Christmas. From this celebration, for example, were derived the elaborate feasting, the giving of gifts, and the burning of candles.” The Encyclopædia Britannica notes that “all work and business were suspended” during Saturnalia.
- Christmas lights: According to The Encyclopedia of Religion, Europeans decorated their homes “with lights and evergreens of all kinds” to celebrate the winter solstice and to combat evil spirits.
- Mistletoe, holly: “The Druids ascribed magical properties to the mistletoe in particular. The evergreen holly was worshiped as a promise of the sun’s return.”—The Encyclopedia Americana.
- Christmas tree: “Tree worship, common among the pagan Europeans, survived after their conversion to Christianity.” One of the ways in which tree worship survived is in the custom of “placing a Yule tree at an entrance or inside the house in the midwinter holidays.”—Encyclopedia Britannica.
What Does The Bible Say About Christmas
The Bible does not say exactly when Jesus was born. “The day of Christ’s birth cannot be ascertained from the NT (New Testament) or, indeed, from any other source,” states McClintock and Strong’s Cyclopedia. Surely, if Jesus wanted his followers to celebrate his birthday, he would have made certain that they knew the date of his birth.
Second, the Bible does not record that Jesus or any one of his disciples celebrated Christmas. According to the New Catholic Encyclopedia, celebrating Christmas was first mentioned “in the Chronograph of Philocalus, a Roman almanac whose source material can be dated to 336 [C.E.].” Clearly, that was well after the completion of the Bible and centuries after Jesus was on earth. Thus, McClintock and Strong note that “the observance of Christmas is not of divine appointment, nor is it of New Testament origin.”
As you can see, Christmas is a birthday celebration, and early Christians did not follow that pagan custom. Furthermore, the Bible does not mention that Jesus or anyone else celebrated Christmas. In light of these facts, millions of Christians the world over, including me, have concluded that Christmas is not for them.
Why I Don’t Celebrate Christmas
- Jesus commanded that we commemorate his death, not his birth.—Luke 22:19, 20.
- Jesus’ apostles and early disciples did not celebrate Christmas. The New Catholic Encyclopedia says that “the Nativity feast was instituted no earlier than 243 [C.E.],” more than a century after the last of the apostles died.
- There is no proof that Jesus was born on December 25; his birth date is not recorded in the Bible.
- We believe that Christmas is not approved by God because it is rooted in pagan customs and rites.—2 Corinthians 6:17.
Many still celebrate Christmas despite knowing about its pagan roots and lack of support from the Bible. Such persons could ask: Why should Christians take such an unpopular stance? Why make it an issue?
The Bible encourages us to think for ourselves, to use our “power of reason.” (Romans 12:1, 2) It teaches us to value the truth. (John 4:23, 24) We adhere to Bible principles even if it means that we become unpopular. Although I choose not to celebrate Christmas, I respect each person’s right to decide for himself in this matter and I do not interfere in the Christmas celebrations of others. ❤️