Many Christians celebrate Christmas, but others don’t. Is Jesus Christ born on December 25th? Does it matter? Does it matter for Christians?
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What was Christ’s birthday?
One man I knew forgot his anniversary date. His wife asked him one day, as he was sitting at his kitchen table, “Do you know the day?” He replied, yes, and said goodbye to his wife. However, when he returned home, he had a dozen red roses as well as a box of chocolates. His wife was confused and asked him what the candy and flowers were for. He said, “I thought it was our anniversary.” She replied, “No, I was just trying to make sure you understood that it was trash day.” As you can see, this is a fictional story. However, my point is that even though we don’t know when Christ’s birthday falls on a specific day, it doesn’t mean we should not celebrate it.
The Bible does not command us to celebrate Christ’s birthday. Although the Bible is silent about the exact date of His birth, it seems that it was in late fall or early winter as shepherds still remained in the fields. Shepherds weren’t likely to be out in fields at the end of December (Luke 2:18).
What if your spouse forgot their birth date, or your child’s? Is it possible to not celebrate it? It doesn’t matter if you can’t remember the date, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. Jesus wasn’t actually “born” as such, because He was always there. Christmas isn’t about Jesus’ birth, but rather Jesus’ coming to earth…He became Man…which is why He’s called Immanuel in certain places of the Old Testament. Immanuel was predicted to be born and has already come about 2,000 years later. Because Immanuel means “God with Us”, and God was with us through Jesus (John 1), he is called Immanuel. Thomas, who had just asked Jesus to see God, was told by Jesus that if he saw him, he would have seen the Father. This means that he had seen God (John 14). Jesus is God. Seeing Jesus is like seeing God.
Is it important?
There are some people who don’t even know their birth date. I know of one lady whose grandmother, her mother, was very harsh. This was probably because she was treated extremely harshly. Her mom didn’t celebrate her birthday. She also lost her birth certificate years ago so she didn’t know the exact date. Although she went to heaven many years ago, the only thing she knew was that her birthday fell in February. Because she didn’t know the exact date in February, her children chose a date and made it her birthday. They didn’t celebrate her birthday based on her exact birth date, but rather on the fact that she was born. They were not celebrating a date, but she was their focus. This is what we celebrate. Humanly speaking, we celebrate that person and not the date. This lady’s birthday was celebrated because of who she was, and not because of any particular date.
Don’t judge others
One time, a man told me that if Christmas was celebrated, then the mark of the beast would be given to me. This is because Santa Claus is part of this “pagan holiday”. He explained to me that December 25th was an ancient pagan feast and that Christmas should not be celebrated in the same way. He suggested that you could spell Satan by changing the letters of Santa. I replied that I could make something absurd if I rearranged his letters.
Also, Santa Claus is not celebrated at my house. We celebrate Jesus Christ. I asked him if his wife was married, and he answered yes. I noticed that he was wearing his wedding ring. I explained to him that the wedding band was an ancient pagan symbol and that he was wearing it because he believed it was part of a pagan ritual. I explained that Christmas is not about a birthday or date. We are celebrating Christ’s birth as a human being, in which He lived a sinless existence as a human being, that He would sin for us, that He would be our substitute, and that He would give His life for us so that we could have eternal life.
We are not celebrating the birth of Baby Jesus, but the day that Jesus entered the world to make it possible for us to forgive our sins and live in eternal bliss and joy with God.
Paul provided us with guidelines on how to treat others when it comes to days we observe or keep. Colossians 2:6-17 says, “Do not let anyone judge your behavior or what you eat, or about religious festivals, New Moon celebrations, or Sabbath days. These are only a glimpse of the future; Christ is the truth. Notice how Paul stated that we should not judge the religious festivals or days that others observe. This would make Christmas fit nicely. People who don’t want to say “Merry Christmas,” will say “Happy Holidays”, but they might not realize that holiday is a derivative of “holy days”. This means that even though others may be trying to be politically correct they still refer to the Christmas holiday as a “holy holiday”.
This is yet another reason we celebrate Christmas with Jesus Christ. We celebrate Christ the Person. We don’t celebrate December 25, but we do celebrate the God-Man’s arrival on Earth! We celebrate that He came into the world to save humanity. Christmas Day is not celebrated because of the date Jesus came to earth, but because Jesus did come to Earth to remove the barrier of separation between God & man that sin had created. We don’t know the exact date Christ will return, but we do know the day He was born.
Although it seems unlikely that Jesus was born on December 25, should this stop Christians from celebrating His arrival as the baby in the manger? It doesn’t say we shouldn’t celebrate Jesus’ birthday, but it doesn’t say we should. However, the Bible does not say we should not celebrate our wedding anniversaries and birthdays. But that doesn’t make them sin. The Bible clearly identifies sinful acts as things we should not do. However, the Bible does not say that we should not celebrate Jesus’ actual birthday. He is the reason we celebrate the season. We are not just celebrating a date on a calendar, but we are also celebrating the God-Man’s arrival.