Disclaimer: About This Blog

THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Is Jesus the Reason For The Season?


What do we mean when we say Jesus is the reasons for the season?

I don't think He is the reason we celebrate with Christmas trees, expensive gifts, fancy turkey dinners, decorations, stockings, candles, and mistletoe.

In Jesus' day they didn't even celebrate birthday's, let alone Christmas. There were at least 300 years of Jesus followers who did not follow any Christmas traditions.

Many of the things we do at Christmas come from different cultures and traditions.  By saying Jesus is the reason, are we trying to steal the fun from non-Christians and claim it as our own?  If Christians can participate in activities that have pagan roots, shouldn't we let others own these traditions as well?

To be fair, I think people who want to say "Happy Holidays", or "Seasons Greetings" or "Give me presents Day" have just as much a rights to own the season as Christians do.  

There are things I love about the season - whatever you want to call it.  I love the emphasis on caring for others that is encouraged. I love how some stories of Jesus are told. And yes, I love the good food, and time with family and friends.  I will still say "Merry Christmas", but I don't claim to own the season more than others.

Or when we say Jesus is the reason for the season, are we saying we think Jesus wants us to celebrate Christmas?  Have you asked Him what He wants you to do this season?  Maybe He wants you to observe most Christmas traditions... but maybe He wants you to focus more on something else.  I can't answer this one for you.

If Christians were simply people who followed Christ... Jesus didn't get worked up defending Christmas...  I'm not sure if He would today either.

This season, and always, can we simply encourage each other to become more like Christ.

One verse I think applies to this is Romans 14:5
"One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. " (NIV)
I think every day is a Holy day. But I'm OK celebrating with others who like to make some days more special than others.

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5 comments:

Frank said...

Christmas?
The cause of all the paraphernalia.
Lies in the hands of Saturnalia,

Jonathan said...

:)

Tim A said...

Sounds like based on Rom. 14:5, if some one wants to pronounce Jesus is the reason for the season, then they can do that. If someone else wants to pronounce something else, then they can do that. If we want to talk the last few hundred years, it's not called Christmas for any other reason. As the years go by, it may cease to be called Christmas. So be it.

Jonathan said...

Thanks Tim. I guess my concern is with some of the ways people push the "Jesus is the reason for the season". It seems like people are drawing a battle line in some culture war. As if Christians want to claim the day as theirs, and everyone who excludes Christ from the season is doing it wrong.

But I agree, I shouldn't get upset with people that want to emphasize that they want to remember Christ during this season. There is sometimes a fine line between boldly stating what you believe, and coming off judging others. We are free to believe and practice with our personal convictions. We are not the judges for everyone else.

Thanks for the comment. Sorry if I sounded judgmental. :)

William Floyd said...

I would say that it's a matter of worshipping Him in spirit and in truth. Of it's not based upon those things then who could honestly claim that it's pleasing to Him?