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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

MUST READ: SECRETS ABOUT CHRISTMAS

The New Testament gives no date or year for Jesus’ birth.This suggests that the earliest Christians is vague in the knowledge of Jesus’ birth date. The year of Jesus birth was determined by Dionysius Exiguus, a Scythian monk. He calculated that Luke 3:1,23 indicates that when Jesus turned 30 years old, it was the 15th year of Tiberius reign. Dionysius welcomed a belief that the Roman emperor Augustus Caesar reigned 43 years, and was
followed by the emperor Tiberius. If Jesus was 30 years old in Tiberius’ reign, then he lived 15 years under Augustus (placing Jesus birth in Augustus’ 28th year of reign). Caesar took power in 727 AUC. Therefore, Dionysius put Jesus birth in 754 AUC. Also based on historical records, Fitzmyer guesses that Jesus birth occurred on September 11, 3 BCE. But all these are just assumptions and probably miscalculations

Why Christmas is Celebrated on December 25 ?
The Roman empire originated the Saturnalia, a week long period of lawlessness celebrated between December 17-25. During this period, Roman courts were shutdown, and Roman law stated that no one could be punished for destroying property or injuring people during the weeklong celebration. The festivity began when Roman authorities chose “an enemy of the Roman people” to represent the “Lord of Misrule.” Each Roman community selected a victim whom they forced and compelled to indulge in food and other physical pleasures and immorality throughout the week. At the festival’s conclusion, December 25th , Roman authorities believed they were destroying the forces of darkness by brutally murdering this innocent men or women. The ancient Greek writer poet and historian Lucian (in his dialogue entitled Saturnalia) describes the festival’s observance in his time. In addition to human sacrifice, he mentions these customs: widespread intoxication; going from house to house while singing naked; rape and other sexual license. In the 4th century CE, Christianity imported the Saturnalia festival hoping to take the pagan masses in with it. Christian leaders succeeded in converting large numbers of pagans to becoming saints by promising them that they could continue to celebrate the Saturnalia as Christians. The problem was that there was nothing inherently Christian or moral about Saturnalia. To solve this,these Christian leaders named Saturnalia’s concluding day, December 25th , to be Jesus’ birthday. Christians had little success, however, refining the practices of Saturnalia. As Stephen Nissenbaum, professor history at the University of Massachusetts, writes, “In return for ensuring massive observance of the anniversary of the Savior’s birth by assigning it to this resonant date, the Church for its part tacitly agreed to allow the holiday to be celebrated more or less the way it had always been.” The earliest Christmas holidays were celebrated by drinking, sexual immortality,singing naked in the streets etc.

The Origin of Christmas Tree
As early Christians converted Roman pagans by combining Christmas with the Saturnalia, so too worshippers of the Asheira cult and its branches were converted by the Church sanctioning “Christmas Trees”. [7] Pagans had since worshipped trees in the forest, or rooted them into their homes and decorated them, and this observance was adopted and painted with a Christian veneer by the Church.

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