Christmas message: There’s no wrong time to rejoice

FEATURE – St. George News invited members of the St. George Interfaith Council, who represent various denominations and faiths in the community, to share holiday messages with our readers to be posted throughout Christmas Day.

The following holiday message was submitted by Rev. Jimi Keston, senior pastor, at Solomon’s Porch Foursquare Fellowship. He also currently serves as the president of the St. George Interfaith Council.

Throughout western civilization Dec. 25 is one of the most profound and meaningful dates on the calendar. For the secular portion of the society it is for most a paid day off of work and a holiday that brings some of our favorite cultural activities, namely eating too much and shopping way too much together in an explosion of excess that can take most of the next year to recover from.

Throw in some jolly songs and an ugly sweater and we can almost forget that this date was chosen as the day we remember the most important birth in the history of the world considering that no one born before or after has had a greater impact on the lives of more people than the birth in Bethlehem of Jesus of Nazareth over 2,000 years ago.

We said the date was chosen because the truth of the matter is that it is almost certain that Jesus, who is called the Christ, was not born on Dec. 25 or for that matter anywhere near December. In Luke chapter 2 we are told that Joseph went with Mary from Nazareth to Bethlehem for a census where she would give birth in the manger because there was no room for them at the inn.

People in the 1st Century traveled by foot and the climate there is much like ours and that would make it a death march at that time of year. You can’t collect taxes from the dead so it is impractical that they would call this census in winter. You could not do it at harvest time or before spring planting either or there would be no crops to tax, so the most likely time of year for Jesus to have been born is actually late spring or early summer.

The Bible gives us no indication of the time of Jesus’ birth and we believe that is intentional. The Lord knew that had he given us the exact date of his birth we would turn it into some massive holiday of celebration that would detract the focus off of the real reason He came: to provide redemption and forgiveness of sin through his death on the cross.

In our home we choose to celebrate with all of the trappings of the holiday including the lights and tree and food and gift giving, we celebrate Christmas at our church with songs of the season and candlelight service on Christmas Eve, but we do so with the knowledge that there is no bad date to rejoice over the coming of the Savior and the date we have chosen as a society is a fine one to tell people about him.

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  • Evil twins mommy December 25, 2014 at 9:56 am

    Excellent article fantastically written as you rejoice in his name. When and where is not important as you prepare to travel the celestial highways of the after life

  • Joe Smith December 25, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    I’ve studied religious history for a good many years, and I’m convinced that the Jesus in the bible was a fictitious character, but possibly loosely based on someone who actually lived…

    • ladybugavenger December 26, 2014 at 12:37 pm

      you are the true Joe smith

      • Joe Smith December 26, 2014 at 2:52 pm

        not sure what to make of that but cheers 😀

        • ladybugavenger December 26, 2014 at 3:49 pm

          Jesus is not fictitious, but from what i know Joseph smith would say he was. But I never studied religious history…but I’ve questioned many religions….I meant no harm….cheers and happy new year!

  • Betty December 25, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    Wisemen still seek Him today. Nice article. Well written, thank you.

  • TruthSeeker December 26, 2014 at 2:04 am

    This article is making wrong things seem okay. It’s justifying falsehoods and its wrong for Misled Christians to celebrate the birth of Jesus on Christmas after realizing it’s not the birth date of Jesus.
    The article says God didn’t give the actual birthday of Jesus because it would be turned into a celebrated holiday, – hmm, so instead of God giving you the truth, the Misled Christians turn it into the celebrated holiday anyways.
    The article says their supposed book of truth intentionally doesn’t give them important dates. This doesn’t seem like somethng to trust as truth.
    The article also days ” the date that was chosen as a society to celebrate Jesus,” sorry but society as a whole didn’t choose this day. Elite rulers chose that day. It was the last day of Saturnalia, ancient Rome winter celebration. And the observance of the 25th was long followed after the winter solstice by Pagan’s for centuries. Decorating a tree is pagan, it was because when all life and plant life was dying, the evergreen tree was magical to them so they bought them indoors and deified it in a way.
    I’m not even religious, but I know the religious perspective of Christmas and non religious perspective. Sadly, most don’t know the origins of Christmas, and separate origins of Santa, and separate literal history of pagan holidays. There’s three sides to Christmas, and anyone claiming to have faith in Jesus, but also teaching their kids to believe in Santa, font realize what they are doing if they take their religion literally.

    How is Santa like Satan?
    It’s a form of idolatry… Kids pray to Santa in the form of a wishlist for materialistic rewards for good behavior once a year when good behavior should be expected. Also, using fear to make kids behave is Satan like. And saying Santa is watching and and that kids better not pout, haha.. Santa is commercialized also. It’s the opposite of Christ like. Studying the origins of Santa, it’s very interesting to find out in Europe, there was a demon like Santa that would punish bad kids.. . And then how Christmas is supposedly a Christian holiday, more interesting points about it actually being a pagan holiday.
    Ha I’m not religious. I just understand the religious perspective and non religious perspective. There’s three sides of Christmas. One side is religious, one side is pagan, and one side is dark. There’s many origins of Santa too.

    Santa is so closely compared to Jesus in attributes and characteristics, that to worship Santa, is against God’s word, therefore making Santa a product of Satan. It’s funny how it’s all interchangeable.
    Santa is an anagram of Satan.

    Santa is coming soon, like Jesus. Santa is omniscient and knows when kids are good or bad. Omnipresent because he can deliver gifts to over a billion homes in one night. Omnipotent, etc.
    Teaching children to believe in Counterfeit gods is honoring Satan. That’s how Santa is like Satan.
    Again I’m on religious, I just study what different religions believe.
    If anyone is interested, you’ll find great stuff on the origins of different Santa’s from different cultures and time periods. And also when the political backed church establishment took over the pagan holiday as their own to convert people to the church. Pagan’s would not do it without being able to keep their traditions and holidays. Winter celebration, saturnalia, etc. Other holidays especially Easter is also pagan. And pagan in this context, is anything that wasn’t Christians or organized churches.

  • TruthSeeker December 26, 2014 at 2:06 am

    I like hearing about others meaning of the holiday as it means something different to everyone. I like learning about all all the origins of Christmas and other holidays and learning the different traditions of different cultures from different time periods.
    To anyone that thinks Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus, I’d like to inform them that Dec 25th is also the day that numerous other saviors were born. Makes ya wonder and want to seek the truth of the matter.
    Horus of Egypt 3000BC, Attis of Frigia 1500BC, Mithra of Persia 1200BC, Krishna of India 900BC, Dionysus of Greece 500BC, to name a few.
    All born on the 25th according to followers and they all were born from a virgin, had desciples or followers, performed miracles, died for 3 days, was resurrected or born again. They were all known as God’s son, the light of the world, etc.

    Many interesting points about the Jesus myth . And the fact that Christmas is a Pagan holiday. And Easter too.

  • TruthSeeker December 26, 2014 at 2:07 am

    The Savior is the Sun, not son.

  • TruthSeeker December 26, 2014 at 2:46 am

    Ancient civilizations have studied the movement of the stars and created elaborate myths about them.
    The birth sequence of Jesus is astrological. The Star in the East is Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky which on Dec 24th align with the three brightest stars in Orions belt. These three stars are known as the Three Kings, which is what they were called in ancient times too. TheThree Kings and Sirius point and align to the sunrise on Dec 25th. This is why ”the Three Kings follow the Star in the East to locate the birth of the Son, Sun”, (the sunrise).
    The Virgin Mary is the constellation Virgo, also known as Virgo the Virgin. It’s also referred to as the House of Bread. The representation of Virgo is a virgin holding wheat. The representation symbizes August and September, the time of harvest. Bethlehem translates to house of bread. Bethlehem is a reference to the constellation Virgo, a place in the sky, not on earth.
    From the summer to winter solstice. The days become shorter and colder. And if you’re in the northern hemisphere, the sun appears to get smaller and lower on the horizon. More scarce. Shortening of days and death of crops signified death to the ancients. Death of the Sun. On Dec 22nd,the Sun reaches it’s lowest point in the horizon, sitting in the southern crux constellation, the southern cross. The Sun doesn’t sit lower or higher on the horizon for the next three days. On Dec 25th, the Sun moves one degree North, foreshadowing longer days, warmth and spring. So it can be said, the Sun died on a cross for three days, and was born again. All the saviors that were listed, we’re crucified and we’re resurrected. They are Sun God’s, solar Messiahs. God’s Sun not God’s son.
    The celebration of spring and salvation isn’t until the Easter, because it’s the Spring Equinox, which is when the Sun officially overpowers the cold darkness. And days become longer than the nights allowing for warmth and crops to begin to grow.
    Another obvious astrological symbolism are the disciples. They are the 12 seasons. Jesus, being the sun, travels around with the 12 seasons.
    The zodiac is the figurative life of the sun, where stars are Anthropomorphised and given stories.
    The cross of the zodiac is a pagan spiritual symbol. Coming right out of the zodiac. It’s not a symbol of Christianity, but the pagan adaptation to the cross of the zodiac. A circle on the cross, the sun on the cross. The Sun being the center of the zodiac, taking that image, the circle and cross is that symbol. Early art shows Jesus head on a cross, like a cross is behind him in the art. Or you also see sun rays and sun around his head,– because Jesus is the Sun, sun of God, light of the world, risen Savior, who will come again, as it does every morning, the glory of God that defends against the darkness, as he is born again every morning, and can be seen coming in the clouds, up in heaven, with his crown of thorns or sun rays.

    Have you seen the Jesus fish symbol? It’s a Pisces. Pagan astrological symbolism for the Suns Kingdom during the age of Pisces. The astrological age is from 1AD to 2150AD. Jesus has a solar Piscean personification. The Bible is an astrotheological literary hybrid.

  • Koolaid December 26, 2014 at 10:57 am

    Was Truthseeker drinking eggnog kool-aid last night/this morning?

    • Dana December 26, 2014 at 1:22 pm

      No, he over danced.

    • Joe Smith December 26, 2014 at 2:46 pm

      I was trying to figure out if he actually typed all that or just pasted it, LOL

      • TruthSeeker December 26, 2014 at 6:24 pm

        Typed it on a note app then copy and paste to the text box. I use my phone.

  • TruthSeeker December 27, 2014 at 2:41 am

    ” The Christian religion is a parody on the worship of the sun, in which they put a man called Christ in the place of the sun, and pay him the adoration originally payed to the sun. ” – Thomas Paine 1737-1809

    Thomas Paine also wrote a book called Common Sense before the American Revolution. It might be worth the read for some frequent guests of STG News.

    • Joe Smith December 27, 2014 at 10:36 am

      Yeah I believe it. The deeper you dig into these religions the weirder they get.

      • Koolaid December 27, 2014 at 12:25 pm

        Especially that Utah based religion!

      • TruthSeeker December 28, 2014 at 1:36 am

        Yeah, they don’t make sense in some ways.

  • mater December 27, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    you could not have picked a more in appropriate name, sir or madame.
    don’t bother with your reply i will not read it nor do i care what you have to say.

    • TruthSeeker December 28, 2014 at 1:37 am

      Mater, What is your concern? What would you like to learn about?

  • My Evil Twin December 27, 2014 at 5:25 pm

    I just love people who come on here and make comments, then follow up with, “don’t bother with your reply i will not read it nor do i care what you have to say.” It just shows how self centered, ignorant and foolish the person who makes the comment is. If they are not willing to listen to another’s point of view, then they should keep their thoughts to themselves.

    • Joe Smith December 28, 2014 at 12:15 am

      Crybabies is what they are. Give them a pacifier, pat them on the head, and read them the BOM and all will be well 😀

    • TruthSeeker December 28, 2014 at 1:37 am

      I I agree.

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