X-Mass and New Year?! (Spec. Days & Occasions)


wintry holidaysThe yearly cycle of our Western calendar has once again brought us into the “magical” season of the “beloved” wintry holidays! The world dominated by the Christian Church is abuzz with their preparation for and anticipation of both Christmas and New Year! If you are a Christian, you must have plunged into the “special” Spirit of this Season, have not you? Not many of our friendly Church goers know, however, that both of their cherished holidays are deeply pagan in their origins and, in fact, quite antagonistic to the biblical faith in One God!

New Year

JanusThe New Year’s celebrations of the First of January are dedicated to the pagan Roman deity of Janus, (hence the name of that month on our heathen calendars)! In ancient Roman religion and mythology, Janus was the god of beginnings and transitions. He was also the deity of gates, doorways, endings and time transitions. He was conceived as a two-faced god since Greco-Roman idolaters believed that he looked both to the future as well as to the past.

Throughout the vast Roman Empire, Janus was believed to preside over the beginning of a new year. Thus, starting on January 1st and continuing through the first month of the New Year, the pagan worshippers within the Empire would pay homage and give glory and praise to the two-headed god of new beginnings, whose good auspices they were seeking for the entire year. Whose auspices are you seeking today? Does your god have more than one head? (hint: Trinity).


Christmas


Christmas is another festive wintry occasion that always falls on the same day of the year, - December 25th! We have all witnessed how many sincere “believers” within Christendom go out of their way during this time of the year in order to “teach” the world as to “the real reason of Christmas season”! In their minds, the “real reason for this season” is Jesus Christ and his birth in a manger, in Bethlehem, more than 2000 years ago! Was Jesus really born in December?


If Lucan account of the birth of John the Baptist and the subsequent nativity of Jesus of Nazareth square properly with the Hebrew Bible’s reckoning of priestly duties at the Temple in Jerusalem, Jesus Christ’s most likely time of birth happened around the Feast of Tabernacles, September/October of that year! The question then is: “Why does the Christian world celebrate the “birth of Jesus” on December 25th”?


Tammuz


TammuzThousands of years before the religion of Christendom was created by the Church, the People of Israel had served as the Beacon of Monotheistic Light in the hostile sea of heathen idolatry. Whenever they succumbed to the lures of pagan polytheism, God of Israel would send His faithful prophets, whose job it was to bring the Eternal Nation back to their Covenant with the Holy One of Jacob!


Ezekiel was one of these mighty men of God. In chapter 8 of his book, God showed him the various “abominations” that had invaded the faith of Israel, commanding him to rebuke the unfaithful within the people: “And He said to me, “Turn again, and you will see greater abominations that they are doing.” So He brought me to the door of the north gate of the LORD’s house; and to my dismay, women were sitting there weeping for Tammuz.” (vv.13-14) - Tammuz was an ancient Babylonian deity, whose person and work have some direct bearing on our today’s topic of Christian holidays.


In Babylonia, Tammuz was worshiped as a Sumerian shepherd-god! Depicted as a male figure carrying cross-shaped sticks in his hands, Tammuz was the deity of “Life - Death - and Rebirth”! The T-shaped, (or should I say, Cross-shaped), amulets were worn by the ancient devotees of Tammuz as a means of protection against an evil eye and other spiritual “dangers”!


Tammuz AmuletBeginning with the Summer Solstice (June 20-22), there came a time of mourning in the Ancient Near East: the Babylonians marked the decline in the daylight hours and the onset of a withering summer heat with a six-day "funeral" for their god. They believed that during that time Tammuz was consigned to the Underworld. The women, whom Ezekiel saw in Jerusalem, were weeping over the death of that ancient pagan deity!


Exactly six months later, on the Day of Winter Solstice, (December 25th, to be exact), when the sun’s daylight began to increase, Tammuz was taught to have been born again to rule the world! The cult of Tammuz, therefore, was inextricably linked with the Sun-worship one way or the other.


In fact, the cult of Tammuz and ancient Sun-worship are connected even within Ezekiel’s vision of Israel’s apostasy, mentioned earlier in this reflection: “Then He said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Turn again, you will see greater abominations than these.” So He brought me into the inner court of the LORD’s house; and there, at the door of the temple of the LORD, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs toward the temple of the LORD and their faces toward the east, and they were worshiping the sun toward the east.” (Ez. 8:15-16) - Interestingly enough, the number of idolaters in this passage corresponds precisely to the date of Winter Solstice on our pagan Western Calendar (25)! Coincidence . . . you decide!


Conclusion

In her restless drive to create a new religion, as far removed from the original Jewish faith in One God of Israel as possible, the Church chose to build its faith and theology on the ancient foundations of pagan religions! The myths of Tammuz and the Roman deity of Janus, whose “holy days” of Christmas and New Year were successfully baptized by the Christian Church, were among many others that have been "given" to the unwashed masses of Christendom by their loving Mother Chwintry landscape1urch!

If ignorance is your bliss, you may go ahead and indulge in the “Spirit of the Season” along with so many other western idolaters, uninhibited by the knowledge of One God and His Word! The Spirit of this Season, however, is as far removed from the Holy Spirit of the Almighty as Darkness is from Light!


The People of God, on the other hand, are preparing to commemorate the events that are eternalized in the story of Hanukkah’s Light! Happy Hanukah, beloved!