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Good Morning Nanty Glo!

Happy New Year!  
Tenth Day of Christmas   

Monday, January 3 2005

Jon Kennedy, webmaster

Christmas questions, ten

Continuing my series responding to a
proposal that Christians not celebrate Christmas

Having promised to wrap this discussion by Epiphany/Theophany, which is Thursday, I have only today's and Wednesday's entries in which to do so. Unfortunately, the author of the original challenge to Christmas has not answered any of my questions directed to him, but has responded only once and then simply reiteritated some of the points (like the choice of December 25 for the celebration of Jesus' birth, and the time it took the wise men to arrive at Bethlehem), which I've now addressed several times. So rather than continue trying to make stronger arguments on such already covered points, I'll step back and try to summarize the reasons Christians do and should celebrate Christ's incarnation.

Though not summarized this succinctly last Friday, all the points there could be summarized in this: We celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ because God's coming to earth in human form is the second-most-important event in human history (the resurrection alone outranking it). We do it when and in the manner that the church has told us to.

The latter statement, I'm convinced, is what bothers those who try to make Christmas out to be a pagan or pagan-influenced celebration, somehow corrupting our salvation or sanctification in Christ. Not receiving any input on my request for more on where our Christmas opponent was coming from (is he Jehovah's Witness, a radical Plymouth Brethren, a throwback Puritan?), I Google-searched the question and found websites that raise questions and criticisms almost identical to our writer's. These in turn were generally traceable to teachings by A. W. Pink, a self-styled throwback to the Puritans if we define Puritans as people who believe everything that isn't specifically taught in the Bible corrupts the faith.

Such "Puritans" (also known as "Reformed Baptists") have virtually no regard for the church as the pillar and ground of the truth, the Bride of Christ for whom He gave His life and shed His blood, which He founded through His Holy Spirit on the first Christian Pentecost. Their church is virtually "a sect of one," a God-fearing individual armed with nothing but his Bible and his own interpretation thereof. Though the Lord assured His followers that the gates of hell would not prevail against His church (Matthew 16:18), the Apostle Paul called the church the pillar and ground of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15), and the Apostle Peter reiterated the Old Testament principle that Scripture is not subject to private interpretation (2 Peter 1:20), such "Lone Ranger Christians" put their own wisdom above that of the church, the Body of Christ.

One must ask when this happens what motivates it. The answer most readily apparent to me is ego, the need to build a following. This is generally known as a cult. When a man or woman creates doctrines of his or her own in variance to those the church as a whole has embraced, he or she is the creator of a new cult and those who follow him or her are breaking communion with the Body of Christ.

The conclusion will, Lord willing, take up more positive reasons for keeping Christmas with a final note on Charles Dickens' role in it.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy 

Series: One | Two | Three | Four | Five | Six | Seven | Eight | Nine

A complete index of Jon Kennedy's Jonals for 2001 - 2004

Who you gonna call?

"How come you're late?" asked the manager as the waitress walked in the door.

"It was awful," she replied. "I was walking down Elm Street and there was this terrible accident. A man was lying in the middle of the street; he had been thrown from his car. His leg was broken, his skull was fractured and there was blood everywhere. Thank goodness I took that first-aid course! All my training came back to me in a minute."

"What did you do?" asked the manager.

"I sat down and put my head between my knees to keep from passing out!"

— Sent by Carl Essex 

Thought for today

You can find truth with logic only if you have already found truth without it.

G. K. Chesterton  

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