The letters page provides a forum for Christian opinion and contributions of up to 200 words long are welcomed. The editor reserves the right to edit or shorten letters. Please email email@example.com. Deadline for the February-March issue is 9 January.
Last issue we printed a letter whose writer stated that both Christmas, Easter and Halloween are no different because they had pagan roots. The following letter is a reaction to that.
Christmas and Easter’s pagan roots
Christmas and Easter are no different to Halloween, are they? Who do we give praise and honour to at Christmas and Easter? Is the same true of Halloween?
When Christians took over the pagan winter festival of light and the spring fertility festival, it was to teach pagan people what it means to worship Jesus, the Light of the World and to celebrate the eternal life won for believers.
Most Christians would agree that every Sunday is a celebration of the resurrection even though Sunday was dedicated to the sun god. Saturday is named after the Roman god of agriculture, Saturn. Shabbat starts at sunset on Friday, that’s Freya’s day named after the Norse fertility goddess. Thursday and Wednesday are named after Thor and Woden. Tuesday is from Tiuw, the Germanic war god and Moonday is a pagan fertility goddess. Every day of the week has pagan significance if you wish to honour that.
Surely God is bigger than our calendars. Let’s get our noses out of our diaries and into the Bible where we find Jesus the Messiah, who confronted evil spirits and false teachings. Jesus, who touched the diseased and was not infected but brought healing. He confronted sin and sinful minds and was not corrupted by them but brought truth and freedom.
Jesus stood among the shrines and detritus of Roman pagan worship at Caesarea and asked the question, “Who do you say that I am?”
Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God, and the nativity commemorates the birth of salvation. Use it to introduce pagan people to the living God. At Easter invite them back to the second part of the story, Jesus’s victory over sin and death and the start of a new life. You will not have a better opportunity.
Halton Baptist Church, Hastings, East Sussex
I must say that I have always been a bit uneasy about Remembrance Sunday. I think it would be more appropriate to make it a day of thanksgiving to God for his remarkable deliverance in two World Wars from a horrible tyranny that does not bear thinking about when you realise what these people would have done had they won. This is the way that ancient Israel would have commemorated these events and not by “remembering” (whatever that may mean – we are almost an inch away from praying for the dead) those who are now dead and whose destiny was fixed at the time of their death. If you must have such a ceremony, it would be more appropriate to have it outside a church and in a secular setting.
I felt that a jingoistic nation (or at least its leaders) were prepared to hijack the Church for their own convenience, having in many cases opposed people like the Salvation Army from ministering to the troops (“too religious” was the excuse). I therefore think that the Church needs to seriously re-think its approach to Remembrance Sunday.
Buy calendars and cards with a Christian theme
We should share Jesus more by sending Christmas cards and Advent calendars which have a Christian theme.
Manufacturers only produce what people will buy – so if we don’t buy Christian products, they’ll only make Advent calendars with a snowman or Father Christmas on!
Christians could also put an imaginatively lit nativity stable scene in their front window, visible to passers-by.
We must not let Christ be removed from Christmas by political correctness.
Beware the blue beam
Shortly there will be an announcement by ‘scientists’ that after all the earthquake activity there have been found no biblical artefacts (of which there are plenty).
But they have found proof of aliens, they will say.
This is part of the scheme to prepare us for the Blue Beam project, displayed on YouTube, where a false rapture and threatened alien invasion will be displayed in the skies.
It is important to know of these things beforehand so we won’t be deceived and fall away.
It is time to be wearing our spiritual armour and making sure we are walking as Christians in a way that pleases our heavenly Father. He will guide and keep us but we do need to prepare for what is coming.
Americans flock to salvation
Readers might like to know that 236,000 people flocked to rallies led by Billy Graham’s son Franklin this autumn and over 250,000 watched online.
The Decision America Tour consisted of 50 prayer rallies. For the 50th, Mr Graham reported, “It was great to see a crowd of 14,200 people come together on the capitol grounds in my home state of North Carolina. When God laid it on my heart to go to all 50 state capitals to pray for the nation, I had no idea what was in store.”
He said that the most exciting part was that over 9,000 individuals revealed that they had made a decision to trust Jesus Christ by faith after he shared the Gospel and gave an invitation at the rallies.
He added, “A man watched the livestream on his iPad with his 97-year-old mother, and she prayed to accept Jesus as her personal Saviour.”