CHRISTMAS
Christian Or Pagan?

PLEASE NOTE: This article is not intended to offend Preacher, Pastor or Laity. It's a personal witness from my heart to yours. If you disagree - that's between you and the Lord. We all stand as individuals before God and will be asked to give an account for what He has revealed and made know to us in our hearts. I pray God's Grace to each reader.

Christmas has been with us for a very long time, but NOT as long as some think. Many mistakenly believe that the Christian churches have been celebrating Christmas since the church started on the Day of Pentecost. The truth is, for the first 400 - 500 years of Christianity there is no mention made of a celebration centering around the "birth" of Jesus. The early church DID NOT observe what we know today as Christmas. It wasn't until well into the 4th century that some (NOT ALL) professing Christians started observing Christmas in one form or another. Over the years Christmas was polished over and over to become one of the brightest stones in Christian "theology".

The Christmas of today is not the Christmas of 40 or 50 years ago. It has gone from a simple reminder of the Birth of Christ, and the exchange of simple gifts, into a highly commercialized and mainly secular holiday.

Still, most of those who celebrate Christmas are unaware of the fact that many of the things which have come to be associated with Christmas have been around for a very long time - longer than Christmas itself; and dating back much further than the birth of Jesus. Rather than being "Christian" these "things" are absolutely pagan. With the passing years many "pagan customs" such as the use of holly, mistle-toe, yule logs, wassail bowls, hanging stockings and the ever-popular Christmas tree and Santa Claus, were incorporated into the Christmas celebration. All Encyclopedias confirm that the roots of Christmas is basically "Pagan", even to its December 25th. date. When one takes a SERIOUS and HONEST look at Christmas, one discovers that Christmas is anything but Christian.

It wasn't until the early 17th century that the Christmas Tree was added to the Christmas tradition. It started in Strasbourg, France, spread from there to Germany, and then into northern Europe. In 1841 Albert, Prince Consort of Victoria, Queen of Great Britain, introduced the Christmas Tree custom to Great Britain. From there, it was brought by emigrants to Canada and the United States. British settlers in the New World adopted Santa Claus from the Dutch tradition of Saint Nicholas Day. When we consider all these things we need to ask: "WHERE is our Lord Jesus Christ in all of this?"

Christmas and many other Pagan holidays were added to the "professing Christian church" when the church went into the prophesied (Revelation Chapter 2 and 3) spiritual darkness. Holy Spirit leadership was usurped by the leadership of man and many anti-Christian doctrines and traditions were brought into the church. It lost the spiritual revelation of the New Covenant of God's Grace and took the people into forms of godliness and idolatry.

Like some of the backslidden leaders of Israel in the Old Testament had done, the leaders of the Church brought in idols and festivals out of their own hearts to satisfy the people and appease their pagan neighbors, hoping to entice them into the church. They now turned to paganism instead of the Word of God for their inspiration! It's a paradox that that period of history when the organized church held undisputed sway over all Europe, has become known to historians with unbelievable irony as the dark ages. It was especially dark in the spiritual realm, showing that the "false church, and not the "true" church was in control.

But since the days of Martin Luther God has been "restoring" Truth back to the true church of the first born (Hebrews 12:23) - bringing in more and more Scriptural Light to expose the anti-Christian doctrines and traditions which were added to the Word by man. The "crowning" ministry of restoration was that of Malachi 4:5-6, revealing the Son of Man, the Mystery of the Seven Seals of the Book of Revelation and exposing the sin of denominationalism.

Of course, the vast majority of professing Christians absolutely reject this "Evening Time Light" (Zechariah 14:6-7) which exposes the errors and sin of the church world. According to Revelation 3:14-22 Jesus Christ Himself is put out of the organized church. In verse 21 we find Christ on the "outside", knocking, calling to the "individual" in the church (but NOT to the church). Therefore, Jesus Christ is neither in the Church or in Christmas.

Even though the New Testament contains absolutely no reference to distinctive Christian festivals or celebrations (other than offering the Bread and Wine (communion - 2nd Corinthians 11:23-34) and the foot-washing ordinance (John 13:1-17), let's take a few moments to see if we can find anything "Christian" in Christmas. Starting with the date we discover that December 25 has nothing whatsoever to do with the birth of Jesus. Being the "Lamb of God" Jesus would have been born at a time when "lambs" in the natural are born - in the spring time. Therefore, where did the December 25th. date originate?

According to Hyslop's "Two Babylons", December 25 was the date of the birth of Tammuz, the illegitimate son of Semiramis, the widow of Nimrod. And Nimrod was the founder of Babylon and false religion. Nimrod was known as "The Sun-God" and his supposed son was the "son of the Sun-God". Here in Babylon the worship of "mother and child" (Semiramis and Tammuz) was started. Bringing this over into Christianity the spiritually blind church leaders adopted the worship of "mother and child" (Mary and Jesus), disguised it with Christian names but it's still a heathen practice. The leaders also adopted the date of the birth of the Son of the Sun-God, as the date for the birth of Jesus, the Son of God. In reality, December 25th represents the highest form of paganism and idolatry.

From different pagan and heathen roots other things were made a part of the Christmas celebration to make it appear religious, while entertaining the people. Most of what the secular and religious world does to celebrate Christmas has NOTHING whatsoever to do with the birth of the Saviour of the World. HE is brushed aside in favor of Santa Claus, the worship of Christmas Trees, gifts, feasting, merry-making and drinking. In Puritan England, under Oliver Cromwell, Parliament passed a law, forbidding the observance of Christmas. But, under King Charles II it was revived again.

The "one" person who is magnified, honored, exalted and looked for, at Christmas time is NOT Jesus Christ, but rather it is an old man called "Santa Claus". Some may go to church once at Christmas time or sing a few carols to put a religious coating on their celebrations, but the most honored one is Santa Claus and Santa's "shrine" which is the Christmas tree. More bow at Santa's shrine then they do at the footstool of Jesus. They are more interested in the gifts around Santa's shrine than they are in the "the gift" of eternal life found at the shrine of our Lord Jesus Christ. In this Age children, young people and even many adults know more about Santa Claus than they do about Jesus Christ. They are more excited about Santa's coming than about the Coming of Jesus.

There was a time when church leaders would allow Santa Claus and Christmas Trees only in the home but NEVER in the church. But now they bring Santa Claus and Christmas Trees right into the church. Because of it's pagan and heathen roots it's an abomination in the sight of God and a stench in his nostrils. But, still, the people turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to the Truth. One Christmas season I was listening to a radio announcer on a Christian radio station, sharing with his radio audience the history of Christmas and the different icons associated with it; at the end of his short chat he remarked, "My, it makes you wonder, whether or not we as Christians should be observing these things."

Whether or not the people want to acknowledge it, the truth remains, that Santa Claus is the God of Christmas and the Christmas Tree is his shrine around which the people gather. If the people really want to remember the birth of Jesus, why don't they set up a "manger scene" in their home; and place their gifts there. And instead of singing "O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree", sing "He's Is Lord! He is Lord!" At least, that would be more Christian-like. The Bible tells us that our God is a jealous God; He shares His glory with none, NOT EVEN Santa Claus.

WHO Is This Guy - Santa Claus?

The name "Santa Claus" is a corruption of the name of "St. Nicholas", a Roman Catholic Bishop who lived in the fifth century. The Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 19, pages 648-49, the Eleventh Edition, states, "St. Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, a saint honored by Greeks and Latins on the 6th of December. A legend of his surreptitious (secret or improper) bestowal of dowries on the three daughters of an impoverished citizen is said to have originated the custom of giving presents in secret on the eve of St. Nicholas, December 6th."

So, from this we have come to associating Christmas Day with St. Nick, St. Nicholas or Santa Claus. The name "Santa Claus" is the dutch corruption of St. Nicholas". We should note here that some time ago the Roman Catholic Church "de-canonized" a number of their "saints"; meaning that certain ones who were previously declared to be Saints are no longer Saints. In essence, they lost their "sainthood' status. St. Nicholas was one of those who lost his sainthood status. The Roman Catholic Church basically admitted that they made a mistake when so-called "good old St. Nick" was canonized.

So, hundreds of millions of people honor and revere a defrocked or demoted Roman Catholic saint. Millions of parents teach their children the "Santa lie" and encourage them to write letters to Santa, St. Nick or Santa Claus, asking for specific gifts for Christmas. I wonder how many parents are teaching their children to write letters or pray to Jesus, asking for His blessings? Once we know the truth about these things then we cannot with an honest heart, before God, promote the Santa "lie" and the Christmas "lie" anymore. If we have Jesus Christ why do we need Santa Claus. Jesus, not Santa Claus, is God's example of love, peace and giving.

Throughout the year parents (some parents) try to instill in their children the virtue of Truthfulness; and sometimes even punish them for telling lies. Then Christmas with it's Christmas spirit comes along and parents begin telling their children the "lie" about Santa Claus. People go so far as to "warn" children to be "good for Santa Claus". It is rear indeed to hear parents warning them to be "good for Jesus". Is it any wonder that many of them, when they grow up and learn the truth about the myth of old Santa, begin to believe that God and Jesus is a myth also. In this day and Age of materialism and commercialism, it is serious indeed to be found spreading such anti-Christian ideas and making merchandise of it - all in the name of religion.

Santa Claus is the number one Christmas idol. Now, let's consider the number two idol in Christmas - The beautifully decorated "Christmas Tree".


O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree!

No one can deny that in today's modern society there is more emphasis put on Santa Claus and the Tree than on Jesus Christ Himself. Weeks before December 25th. the people, driven by advertising and commercial brain-washing, begin to get into the 'spirit' of Christmas. Eventually the idols and decorations come out of the closet and go on display - Santa Claus, trees, lights, etc. out number manger scenes on a scale of several thousand of secular idols to one manger scene. HOW in the world can Christians think that Christmas is a Christian celebration?

What was the origin of the Christmas tree? Well, it didn't start as many think, with Martin Luther or by someone else in Germany. The origins of the Christmas Tree go back long before the time of Martin Luther or even the time of Moses. Again, Alexander Hislop in his classic book, entitled "The Two Babylon's", traces the Christmas Tree, the Yule log and many other Christmas traditions, back to Babylon and the false religion founded by Nimrod and his wife. The Yule log represented the dead stock of Nimrod, deified as the Sun-God, but cut down by his enemies. The Christmas Tree is Nimrod come to life again. His widow had reported that "overnight" an evergreen tree grew up from a dead stump, thus causing the people to worship Nimrod, his widow and his son (mother and child worship).

From Babylon the legend of the Tree spread among other tribes and peoples till eventually it became what it is today in our society - The Christmas Tree. As common as it is with us, it was equally common in Pagan Rome and Pagan Egypt. In Egypt it was a Palm tree; in Rome it was the Fir tree; the Palm tree denoting the Pagan Messiah, Baal-Tamar, the Fir tree referred to him as Baal-Berith. It wasn't until the mid-seventeenth century that the Christmas Tree (as it came to be called) started to grow in popularity and use. But beyond any shadow of doubt we know that the Christmas Tree is deeply rooted in paganism and heathenism.

There is more than enough historical evidence to show that Christmas, as it is celebrated by most Christians today is absolutely HEATHEN and PAGAN. As for Bible proof, we are admonished in Jeremiah 10:2:

Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.

Yet, in the celebration of Christmas there is more emphasis on the "heathen" aspects then on the professing Christian teachings. For most, Christianity and the birth of Jesus Christ is not even considered. There may be a "form of godliness" mention of the Birth of Jesus in the churches, and then it's forgotten until next  Christmas.    

To avoid heart conviction, by the WORD, many Christians refuse to apply verses 3-5 of Jeremiah 10 to Christmas, refusing to accept these words as sufficient "evidence" to indict the use of "Christmas Trees" by Christians. Some argue that the prophet Jeremiah is not referring to the Christmas Tree as we know it today, but they feel that these verses [only] speak of cutting a tree, carving it into an image, beating silver and gold, etc. into plates to wrap around the stock, to hide the wood. But an idol is an idol, regardless of what form it takes.

Therefore, let's look at verses 3-5, along with other Scripture references which refer to idols. Then decide if we can apply it to Christmas trees. It is willful blindness indeed to say that the Christmas Tree is not an idol in this 21st. century.

In Exodus 20:3-5 the First Commandment clearly states:

Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God.....

When the Christmas Tree is decorated it bears the forms of many idols of gold, silver, stars, angels, lights, etc.. It has become a pleasure shrine which people love more than they love God. Many would argue, 'but, we don't bow down to it or worship it'. Then WHY is there so much emphasis put on it. In reality, the people, in their hearts are bowing to the tree and it's demands to be the prettiest. Then, on Christmas morning they get on their knees to get the gifts it offers them.

Again in Deuteronomy 29:16-17 we find these words:

(For ye know how we have dwelt in the land of Egypt; and how we came through the nations which ye passed by;
And ye have seen their abominations, and their idols, wood and stone, silver and gold, which were among them:)

An idol is an idol. Now let's go back to Jeremiah 10:3-5

"For the customs of the people [are] vain: for [one] cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.
They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.
They [are] upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also [is it] in them to do good. Jeremiah 10:3-5

Matthew Henry, in his Bible commentary on Jeremiah chapter 10 stated:

"If you think to mend the matter by mending the materials of which the idol is made [and decorated], you deceive yourselves. .....the stock [of the tree] is a "doctrine of vanities" (verse 8), it teaches lies, it teaches lies concerning God. ...it amuses ignorant worshippers. ...They [the tree images] are falsehood; they are not what they pretend to be, but a great cheat put upon the world. Enquire into the use of them and you will find they are "the work of errors" (verse 15) grounded upon the grossest mistakes....."

Matthew Henry does not mention the "Christmas Tree" because his commentary was not published until 1712 - many years before the "Tree" was introduced into England. But with "historical hind-sight" and "spiritual insight" we can unquestionably place the "Christmas Tree" in Jeremiah 10. One thing is certain, True Prophets will not disagree with one another on the Word of God. The end-time Prophet to the Gentiles (Malachi 4:5-6) clearly stated that the "Christmas Tree" is an "idol".

Considering history and the Word of God, ask and answer for yourself the question: "Should we attempt to "put Christ back" into "a Christmas" that is riddled with paganism and heathenism? Can we take something essentially heathen and make it Christian? Is it the way of God or His Bible?" In Scripture the Lord has always called His people to a separation from idolatry and heathenism.

As they did in Oliver Cromwell's day, in England, maybe it's a time to abandon the observance of Christmas again, not only because of it's pagan roots, but because it's all out of balance. It's a time of the year when the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. It is at Christmas time that the gap between the "haves" and "have nots", the "well to do" and the "poor" widens. The pain of their poorness is never more severely felt than at Christmas time. The early Christian church helped and served the poor throughout the year, easing their burden everyday and not just one day a year.

I only ask that you seriously consider the above comments and the following Quotes from the Message of God's Servant and prophet, Bro. William Branham. It's for you to decide whether or not you want to partake of any of the Christmas celebrations, or whether you want to do away with Santa Claus, Christmas Trees, etc. and just keep it in the simplicity of the moderate and modest exchanging of gifts. No doubt there are many people who want to keep Christmas in a Christian way. They genuinely want to remember the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ without undue emphasis on Mary, Trees, Santa Claus, Lights, etc. They attempt to keep it in a spiritual way - doing good works. That's all good and fine BUT must it be done in the name of Christmas? WHY wait till Christmas to help someone or go to church, etc.? Let Christ be born in you to live His Life through you daily.

The following Quotes on Christmas in general, Christmas Trees, Santa Claus, Gift giving, etc., are by Brother William Branham. They are in chronological order - From 1949 - 1965. You will notice the "progressive" and more defining emphasis on the "pagan" and "heathen" traits of Christmas. Editor's notes, when inserted, will be clearly identified as such and printed in italics.

God bless you!

The Deity Of Jesus Christ - 12/25/49
Noah had some faithful ones in that day. God's got some faithful ones today. The hour is coming, this great drama setting......Men and women, if the Holy Ghost is dwelling in you, the Christ that was born nineteen hundred years ago, came to manhood - He never stayed in the cradle. And today, that memorial of His birthday, what do they do? They get some tree, cut it down, make a Christmas tree, for the kiddies. But they think... That's all right; I'm not kicking against that. But the thing of it is, they put more on the Christmas tree than they do for Christ.

The Deity Of Jesus Christ - 12/25/49
Kris Kringle's run over the country. Who was he? A German, a Catholic saint years ago, an old man went about doing good. And today it's become almost a worship. That's right. It's all right to tell the kiddies, or whatever you want to do, as far as I'm concerned. But the thing of it is, it's so easy to fall in that rut on the other side, and push out Christ, the real fundamental thing of Christmas. And man take Kris Kringle instead of real Christmas; that's right, "No room for Him in the inn."

Editor's Note: As we consider these quotes in their chronological order let's keep in mind the "progressive revelation" of the Ministry and Message of Malachi 4:5-6. As the prophet progresses into his Ministry and Message for the age he becomes more forthright in speaking the Truth - without respect of persons or churches - giving preeminence only to the WORD of the Lord. Also, remember that concerning the "Message" of the hour we have been commanded to "SAY ONLY WHAT THE TAPES SAY". God didn't vindicated what "other's" say; He only vindicated what the Prophet said.

God Hidden And Revealed In Simplicity - 03/17/63m
And now, this is just a little service that it'll blend right in with it though, so listen to every word. Catch it. And if you're taking it on tapes or anything, then you stay right with that tape teaching. Don't say nothing but what that tape says. Just say just exactly what the tape says .......See? And you be sure to say just what the tape says. Don't say nothing else (See?), because I don't say that of my own. It's Him that says it. You see? So many times confusion, people will raise up and say, "Well, so-and-so said it meant so-and-so." Let's just leave it just the way it is.

Listen. May I say this right quick now? Even the visions that God gives here at the place, it's so misunderstood. That's the reason you hear me on the tapes say, "Say what the tapes say. Say what the visions say."

Editor's Note: We're not to go on "hearsay". We're to "STAY with what he said on the tapes". If what the prophet "did" in his private life was in any way contrary to what is on the tapes we are still instructed to "Stay with what was recorded on the tapes" - let the Message SPEAK. THIS IS SERIOUS! If we ignore the "revealed Word" to allow for Christmas Trees and Christmas celebration, then we leave the door open to ignore other things and "do what's right in our own eyes".

Editor's Note: When referencing the "Messenger" versus "the Message, William Branham said:

BIRTH PAINS - 65-0124
Don't pay any attention to the messenger. Look at the Message it is. That's what is. See? It isn't that. Don't notice the little baldheaded, you know, person, 'cause it's just a human being, all, and we're just all the same. But watch what's happening. That's what declares it.

Editor's Note: In another Message, when encouraging the people to  "Get Away FROM Christmas", Brother Branham told them what to say in the following words:

WE HAVE SEEN HIS STAR & COME TO WORSHIP HIM - 63-1216
198 Say, "I want to follow, I want to follow the Morning Star, Christ. I want to follow and find my Jesus this day. I want to get away from all this here Christmas tinsel and things, because some day it's going to be burnt with unquenchable fire." And all those who are in tolerating with it, will be burned with it. The world, the sinner, will punished be, they will perish with the world. The worldly-loving people will perish with the world. And if you have, though, still the love of the world in you, and you want to sell yourself completely tonight to Jesus Christ and His Word, raise your hand.

Editor's Note: Do you need it any plainer to understand William Branham's TRUE thoughts about Christmas?

The Cruelty Of Sin - 04/03/53
Today I was thinking of the cathedrals a ringing out, and the bells a tolling, and so forth like that; and people going to the church, and making ready, and the women buying their Easter hats and so forth. What has this come to? My, how I can't understand where a rabbit has anything to do with the resurrection (See? No, sir.), or how a Christmas tree has anything to do with the birth of Christ. It's pagan, friends. We've got off the path somewhere. That's right. But now a real born again man or woman realizes, because there's life within you, tells you that that's wrong. Is that right? [Congregation responds: AMEN!]

Where Is He, King Of The Jews? - 12/21/58m
And today I wonder if our religion has brought us to that intelligence to realize it's not in a manmade perfumed theology that we're trying to teach, but it's in the power and the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit in the land today. Brother, sister, in this last hour, as it's coming to the end of the time, search out your souls, find out how you're standing with God.

Where Is He, King Of The Jews? - 12/21/58
It's Christmas. All the tinsel up-and-down the street of Santa Claus, a German fiction, a Catholic dogma... There's not one ounce of it true. And it takes the place of Jesus Christ, in the hearts of too many Americans. Christmas don't mean Santa Claus. Christmas means Christ. It's not some man with a pipe in his mouth, and coming down a chimney. Teaching your children such as that, what do you expect them to grow up to be? Tell them the Truth, not on some fictitious story. Tell them there's a God of Heaven Who sent His Son, and that's what Christmas means. And He's near coming again.

And as the pressure begins to come to the earth, the Devil has put out his things, ...what you can see, the tinsel, and so forth. God's put out His, which is Spirit, that you can't see, but you believe.

Questions And Answers On The Holy Ghost - 12/19/59
QUESTION: What about a Christmas play in a Holy Ghost church?

ANSWER: Well, if it's about Christ, it might be all right. But if it's about Santa Claus, I don't believe in him. I've grown away from that. I don't believe in Santa Claus at all. See? And some of these little Christmas things they have, I think is ridiculous. But I think they've took all Christ out of Christmas and put Santa Claus in it.

And Santa Claus is a fiction story. (I'm not hurting any of your feelings, I hope, about the children.) But I'll tell you. Here not long ago, about twenty-five, thirty years ago, when a minister here in this city, the pastor of a certain big church here in the city, that I knew real well, a bosom friend of mine, he walked to me. And Charlie Bohanon (Set there in his office and said, "I'll never tell my kids or have my grandchildren told that lie no more." He said, "My own little boy walked up to me after he got about twelve years old, and talking about Santa Claus..." And he said....."Then, daddy, is this Jesus the same thing?"

Tell the truth. Santa Claus is a Catholic getup about a fellow, a Kriss Kringle or Saint Nicholas, an old German Catholic saint of many years ago who went around doing good to children. And they've carried it down as a tradition. But Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He's real, and He lives.

God's Wrapped Gift - 12/25/60
And then I want to take this time to express to each and every one of you, how grateful I am to you for your Christmas cards and gifts, and things that was received at our house. I certainly thank you with all my heart. It certainly did us good this morning when... I got a little boy, small enough yet to kind of want a Christmas tree, and we had it in the room. And this morning, go under there, I found several gifts from my church here, and my friends from around different places, that had come in, laying under the tree. And I don't have words to express to you what I, how I appreciate every one of them. And may the God of heaven bless you richly is my prayer.

Editor's Note: If one is looking for an "excuse" to partake of the Pagan traditions associated with Christmas, they will quickly lay hold on this quote. They will feel justified in having a Christmas tree because Brother Branham had one for his young son. BUT before we jump too quick to go out and cut or buy a Tree let's make sure we've considered EVERYTHING the prophet and what the Scriptures have to say about the subject of Christmas, Christmas Trees and the other Pagan things associated with the celebration. Let's be reminded again that the Lord has instructed us to "Stay with, and say only what the [revealed Word] on the tapes say".

Still, there are those who will consult certain members of the prophet's family to see what he did in his private life. God didn't vindicate "everything" the prophet did in his private life - he was a human being, with human weaknesses like all of us. On tape he has confessed his human weaknesses. One incident was in the area of disciplining one of his sons. He mentioned that Sis. Meda would have "give him a whipping" but his son worked on his "soft spot" in order to avoid a whipping. (Note: His Unfailing Words Of Promise - 64-0120, Para. 86).

Even though Bro. Branham had a Christmas Tree for his little boy that does not justify believers - over 45 years later to have the same. Remember, this generation is going further into the Word than that generation - Brother Branham himself said we would go further (Note: What Is The Holy Ghost - 59-1216, Para. 72). And the further you go into the Word the greater will be the separation from the world and the things of the world. May the Lord grant Grace that we "not grow weary of the separation".

Let's also remember that Brother Branham was in the "lap-over" period between the last church age - the "Laodicean church Age" and the "Bride Age" - that period when the called-out predestinated seed is being gathered unto Him (2nd Thess. 2:1), through the Revelation of the Mystery of God for this age (Revelation 10:1-7). We're not in a lap-over any more. Spiritually we ought to be completely our from under the influence of the church spirit of the Laodicean Age. Therefore, "let the Message, ALL the Message, SPEAK and LIVE Itself through you".

God's Wrapped Gift - 12/25/60
But the people don't want It [Christ - God's wrapped gift]. So they got the church so wrapped up in these denominations till they can take a trustee board or a deacon board and turn a good pastor any way they want to. But they can't turn God, that's one thing sure, God's going to remain God. They won't welcome Him. They welcome heir friends and their politicians, and so forth, but they won't welcome Christ. They'd rather have Santa Claus anytime. The world's took over; Santa Claus has took over. Well, you know, little children don't even know no more what Christmas means.

God's Wrapped Gift - 12/25/60
What's any more of a myth than Santa Claus? Never was such a thing. Telling children lies, you'll be responsible for it at the day of the judgment. Yes. No wonder people don't know what to do. They just don't want the real thing. They'll take anything artificial, but they don't want the real thing. They don't want the gifts of God. Certainly. They don't want Jesus; that's one thing.

God's Wrapped Gift - 12/25/60
Today, Christmas means a carton of Camels [cigarettes], a carton of Viceroy, a bottle of Four Roses, or Seagram, wrapped up in a pretty Santa Claus paper. But they still refuse God's Christmas Gift. They still refuse His Christmas Gift. They don't want It.

Christianity Versus Idolatry - 12/17/61
I know that we people here do not teach our children of such a myth as Santa Claus. We do not believe in telling anybody a lie, so you're not going to lie to your children. Such stuff as that, that's mythology to its heights, of such a thing as taking the place of Christ at Christmas. .....Christmas is no more a worship; it's a celebration: drinking, gambling, carousing, just pagan to the limit.

Christianity Versus Idolatry - 12/17/61
Studying on mythology and all these myths, Christmas itself is a myth. It's not nothing real about Christmas. Christmas wasn't even mentioned in the Bible; they never worshipped the birthday of Christ. Wasn't no such a thing. That's a Roman Catholic dogma and not a Christian teaching, no Scripture for it nowhere in the Bible and for the first hundred years after the Bible (See?) nothing of it. It's just a myth. Santa Claus, commercial, everything, the whole thing is wound up into a big conglomeration.

Christianity Versus Idolatry - 12/17/61
You know where you got Christmas? Christ was born in April. But what did they do? ...from the twentieth until the twenty-fifth is when the sun god had its birthday. There's about five days there; that's when they had the Roman circus in that time, the celebration of the sun god's birthday at that time. And now you see what you got now? They said make it the sun-god, they take it Son of God. And the whole thing is pagan to begin with.

Christianity Versus Idolatry - 12/17/61
And the people on the streets, with their high-heeled shoes, and they're twisting up and down the streets, and running into stores...And here the other day, my wife was telling me, someone said, "I won't know what to get daddy. Brother's going to get him a quart of whiskey, and the other one said he was going to get him some champagne......" Celebration of Christmas, pagan, devil-worship.

Editor's Note: "Celebration of Christmas, pagan, devil-worship These are STRONG words - "pagan, devil-worship". But, if you've still got a Christmas Tree or a Television, etc "in your heart", one day, if you nurture that desire you will have it in your home - regardless of what the prophet said.

Sirs, We Would See Jesus - 12/24/61
Let me make this clear. I do not believe that Jesus would care what day you worshipped His birthday on (if it's the 25th, 26th, or whether it's April, May, June, July, or whenever it might be), just so you worship - you worship Him on any day. But here's what it is. They have taken the sacredness from Christmas to make it not a Christmas, a worship day, but a celebration. See? You hear people say, "We're going to celebrate Christmas." That's wrong. We should never celebrate Christmas. Christmas is a day of worship, not a celebration.

Sirs, We Would See Jesus - 12/24/61
The disciples today is a lot difference from the disciples of old. The disciples of old brought the seeker into the Presence of God. And today the disciples of the day bring them into the presence of some church organization, some affiliation, some creed, some doctrine, instead of bringing them into the Presence of Christ. We take the word "Christmas." It's very seldom you ever hear Christ's Name mentioned. You don't hear it mentioned. The lights and tinsel is all on Santa Claus, not on Christ. The people hardly knows what Christmas is really for. They've just paganized it and paganized it till it's all become pagan.

Sirs, We Would See Jesus - 12/24/61
Christmas is not mentioned in the entire book of the Bibles. Never one time did Jesus refer them to His birth, but to His death. Not one time did Jesus ever say, "Join a church." Not one time did He ever say, "Recite a creed." But He said, "Come unto Me."

Sirs, We Would See Jesus - 12/24/61
God bless you. Not exactly a "Merry Christmas," but God's blessings of Christmas be upon you. May the Christ of Calvary hide you in Himself, and blanket you, and so wrap you and enshroud you in His Word till His Word will be made flesh in you, is my prayer. God bless you.

The Falling Apart Of The World - 12/16/62
I wish that really the people could understand in this world, what really Christmas is. Now, the first word Christmas is a kind of a Catholic expression. It means "Christ's mass." See? It was ordained or was begin with the Roman church. And Christ was no more born on the twenty-fifth day of December than I was. It's just a complete conglomeration of dogma. That's all there is to it.

The Falling Apart Of The World - 12/16/62
"The whole world," as the prophet said, "has become a putrefied sore." That's right. Just it's just no clean thing nowhere. ...Why, Santa Claus took Christmas' place, the birth in the manger. The rabbit, and chicken, and new hats took the resurrection. And where does God appear in all of this at? See? .....Why, they started buying Christmas present months ago, and what is it but a heathen trait. There's nothing about it godly. Oh, they try to say, "Give gifts, to the wise men." That's just an oasis for a devil's excuse. You want to give something, it's your life to Christ. Don't give to one another; give it to Him. That's what He died for. That's His purpose of coming.

Editor's Note: "Here, Bro. Branham here refers to the exchanging of gifts as a "heathen trait...there's nothing about it godly". That's what he said. Is it the Vindicated Word of the Lord or the meaningless words of a mere man? In the above paragraph he goes on to explain how the people try to justify their actions by referring to the "Wise men who gave gifts" to Jesus. The prophet called it "an oasis for a devil's excuse. I ask you again: "Is it the Vindicated Word of the Lord or the meaningless words of a mere man?"

The Falling Apart Of The World - 12/16/62
But it's [Christmas] got to be a place where it's a curse to little children. Some little neighbor down the street can have plenty, and the other little fellow don't have nothing, and they look. And the whole thing is altogether wrong. That's all.

And merchants raise their merchandise at these places.....Oh, what a big commercial setup it is. And after all, do you know how Christmas ever begin, this what we call Christmas, "Christ's mass"? Here's the story of it, just a little jot I got wrote down here on a page. .....I took the "Nicaea Council," and the "Pre-Nicaea Council" and the "Post-Nicaea Council," and "Nicene Fathers," and Hislop's "Two Babylons" and Foxe's "Book of Martyrs," and all, because I've heard ministers quote it. But I wanted to read it myself to see, so that I would know when I read it or said to my people, because God's going to make me answer at the day of the judgment what I say to the people. So I've just got to not say what someone else said that they read.

The Falling Apart Of The World - 12/16/62
This was done by the Roman Catholic church before it become the Catholic church in Rome, about 306 [A.D.], somewhere along in there. Now, we find out that the Roman pagans worshipped Jupiter, which is the sun god; and they worshipped Ashtoreth, which was the moon god, or otherwise the mother of the mother of heaven. Well, to bring this down, they said that Ashtoreth, or god's mother of heaven was no more, and reflected herself in Mary. So it still remained idolatry, connecting Christianity to idolatry.

The Falling Apart Of The World - 12/16/62
Now, God sent them in the day that they were crying, not a military genius, not a great general coming down with buckling armor.......But He sent them a Saviour and they didn't want It. They thought they were saved. See? And that's the way with the churches today. Finds at this Christmas time with all the tinsel of Christmas and the Santa Claus lights, the pagan traits and things grouped into both Catholic and Protestant churches, and it's just as corrupt as it can be. And God sends them a Saviour. What? Back to the Word, the Holy Spirit, God's Messiah and His Anointed, to anoint His church and send it back to the Word. Do you think they want It? No, sir, they won't have It. They'll turned her down just like they always do.

Reproach For The Word - 12/23/62
On this Christmas eve, Lord, we're grateful for the Gift of God. .....though this be some, as we believe in our hearts, some pagan superstition of the day that they have tried to mold it and make it be like a mass - Christ-mass. But we are not coming in that way of Santa Claus, and Christmas trees, and decorations; but we're coming in the Name of the Lord Jesus to worship the God of heaven that was made incarnate, flesh like us, and dwelled among us to redeem us, and suffered the reproach of the Name, suffered the reproach of the cross to let a worldly institution put Emmanuel to death, in order that He could bring us to Eternal Life.

Why Little Bethlehem? - 12/14/63
You know, at Christmas, Too many of us, I wouldn't say all, but too many of us lose the real value of what Christmas is. As I noticed out here, even the palm trees are decorated; and in the east it's always the fir tree, or the evergreen. And weeks, maybe a month or six weeks before Christmas ever begins, it's always the tinsel and the great - they made it a commercial in the stead of what it really means.

Why Little Bethlehem? - 12/14/63
There's something lacking somewhere. What we try to do is twist it up and make it some great something up there, put flower and tinsel on it, and we pollute it just like the nations has done Christmas. That's right. If we could get the tinsel off of the things, and the humility back in the human heart... If we could bring the humility back to Christmas of what it ought to be, not a commercial day, not lights and Santa Clauses, but back to worshipping the God of creation Who come in a stable and was born a baby, God made flesh and dwelt among us. If we could come back to that, get away from the tinsel and the big things.
God don't even deal with it at all.

Why Little Bethlehem? - 12/14/63
What we need today is a fresh pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon hearts that's humble. We need a real Christmas, a birthplace. If you could realize that you're nothing but a stable. God didn't go to Jerusalem, to Shiloh, or Ramoth-Gilead, He come to a stable that was polluted. When you let God, ... And realize in yourself that you're nothing but a stinking stable. .....open your doors of the manger of your heart and let Jehovah come into that, and watch what takes place, for He is the Word.

Why Little Bethlehem? - 12/14/63
Today we can do the same thing. You can either take your creeds, take your so-and-so, and go wherever you want to with it; but you can say, "Not my will, but Thine be done." Come back to that Word of God. Take your tinsel and Christmas and do what with it you want to, but give me Jesus Christ in my heart.

Why Little Bethlehem? - 12/14/63
I don't care about how much tinsel they got, "You got to do this or we're going to close up your churches". I don't care what they close up; that has nothing to do with the Word. Yes, sir. Where you going? Just exactly what the Word said you was doing, going right back, all dressed in worldly tinsel, with all kind of worldly promises, but it's away from the Word a million miles. There it is today,
Christmas again, to keep us from the promise of the Word. But It shall be fulfilled. God's able of these stones to rise children to Abraham. .....trying to keep the real true Bethlehem dwellers away from Eternal Life; that's their purpose.

Editor's Note: Did you notice that statement? There it is today, Christmas again, to keep us from the promise of the Word." Here it is today, keeping people from the "promised Word of His Second Coming"; looking back to His First Coming and failing to enter into the Revelation of His Second Coming-Rapture for the Bride.

We Have Seen His Star - 12/16/63
Is there one that hasn't raised their hands, would say, "Remember me, Brother Branham, in prayer now"? God bless you. Another? Bless you. Another, someone? God bless you. God bless you, young man. Another? God bless you, young fellow. Will another? Say, "I want to follow the Morning Star, Christ. I want to follow and find my Jesus this day. I want to get away from all this here Christmas tinsel and things, because someday it's going to be burnt with unquenchable fire." And all those who are in tolerating] with it, will be burned with it.

We Have Seen His Star - 12/16/63
Oh, brother, sister, how nice it would be if each one of you, if each one of us, us, me, if each one of us could lay aside all this here Christmas tinsel (See?) quit all this swapping gifts, one with another, all of this nonsense of the world, and just take off our pride and lay it down, and stomp the thing under foot, say, "Lord Jesus, guide me to that perfect Light," Watch something supernatural happen. The Holy Spirit will come in a phenomenal way. See?

Editor's Note: In these previous two paragraphs Brother Branham is expressing the desire for others and himself to "get away from...lay aside...and quit" all those things associated with Christmas. He called it all of this nonsense of the world. I ask you again: "Is it the Vindicated Word of the Lord or the meaningless words of a mere man?"

God's Gifts Always Fine Their Place - 12/22/63
So then, being that this was converted - Christianity was accepted in their [pagan] way in Rome, then they said, "We'll make the same celebration and make Son of God's birthday." See? The sun god Jupiter's birthday, then Son of God's birthday, twenty-fifth of December.............And now, you say "Well, the rest of them is all Santa Claus and going on like they do; why, we just might as well do it." No, sir. No, this is not a pagan celebration to us; this is a sacred hour. If there had been no Christmas, there would been no resurrection. If there'd been no Christmas, there'd been no love, there'd been no peace, there'd been no hereafter for the believer, if there'd been no Christmas.

Why It Had To Be Shepherds - 12/21/64
.....Help us tonight, Great Physician, and heal the sick that's in our midst. And give us the Spirit, the true Spirit of Christmas. When today that when pagan ceremonies, Christmas trees worshipped, fiction stories of a man named Santa Claus, and of our Easter rabbits, and the different fashions that the commercial world has capitalized on, may it be laid aside, God. Let us enter into Christ the Word, for we asked it in His Name and for His glory. Amen.

Why It Had To Be Shepherds - 12/21/64
And we set as sour as the bumps on a pickle, and let such things go on, and afraid to raise and testify your conviction, and condemn all this nonsense, make Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever. It's Christmas time; get out these Santa Clauses and stuff; away with that nonsense of commercializing. Wherever you heard about Santa Claus in the Bible? It's a Roman mythology; there's nothing to it at all; there is no such a thing. Don't teach your children such nonsense as that.

Editor's Note: Again, note what the prophet said about "Christmas trees worshipped." The Christmas Tree is more of an idol now then it ever was in any Age. In the next paragraph of the same Message Bro. Branham said, "And we set as sour as the bumps on a pickle, and let such things go on, and afraid to raise and testify your conviction, and condemn all this nonsense, make Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever". I ask you again: "Is it the Vindicated Word of the Lord or the meaningless words of a mere man?"

Harvest Time - 12/12/64
Notice, Eve met hers [her fall]. And so did the second Eve met hers at Nicaea, Rome, gave to it a denomination, creed, accepted dogmas instead of the Word; taken down pagan idols like Jupiter and so forth, and put up Paul and Barnabas. And took down the sun god and the moon god, Ashtoreth, the moon god, with round kosher on it, and made her being the mother of the sun god which is Jupiter. And changed the birthday of Jesus from April, where all nature, where He was born under the ram, 'cause He was a ram, and changed that up to the sun god's birthday in the solar [winter solstice] there.....the sun god's birthday, not the Son of God. And every one of us play Santa Claus, and decorate trees, a heathenism, and things like that, and then call ourselves Christians? What's the matter with the Christian church?

Editor's Note: My beloved Brother and Sister in Christ, re-read the last two sentences of the last paragraph: "And every one of us play Santa Claus, and decorate trees, a heathenism, and things like that, and then call ourselves Christians? What's the matter with the Christian church?" Here, Brother Branham acknowledges that he is as guilty as the rest of the people, but does not seek to justify himself. On the contrary, he questions his own Christian experience for partaking of such things. But, through his Ministry the Lord did leave the Bride the legacy of a Message that would circumcise all unbelief, heathenism and paganism from our hearts. are you still in the "lap-over" or are you into the "full Revelation" of the Word of Rapturing Faith?

Conclusion

Seriously considering the Scriptures, history, what Brother Branham has said, and the lateness of the hour in which we live, our participation in Christmas is very limited indeed. Over and over in the Old Testament God warned Israel not to get involved with the pagan customs of their heathen neighbors. When Israel drifted into idolatry and paganism, the Lord would always send a message of warning, through His prophets. If the warning was ignored, chastisement and/or judgment followed.

Like Israel, the "Church of the First Born" is called to walk a separated walk; talk a separated talk; and live a separated, peculiar life, for the Glory of God. Once learning the Truth about Christmas, our participation in it's pagan customs brings reproach on the pure Gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. No matter how "nice" or "religious" it seems, it's still pagan.

In making our decision about which parts of Christmas we should participate in, we must not forget that the Christmas of "today" (2010) is more worldly, more commercialized, and more secular than it was in Brother Branham's day. We've gone far beyond the "lap-over" period in which Brother Branham lived. More than ever Christmas is polluted with the world and the things of the world. And the Bible tells us that "if we [as professing Christians] love the world or the things of the world, the Love of God is NOT even in us" (1st. John 2:15).

The Bible says that one time God winked at our ignorance. In Acts 17:29-31 Paul admonishes us in these words:

Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.
And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:
Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by [that] man whom he hath ordained;

For centuries God winked at our ignorance as we used pagan and heathen customs and practices to celebrate the birth of Jesus. But now in these last days, when the Evening Time Light (Zechariah 14:7) is shining, the Son of Man is Revealed, and the Mystery of God is finished, HE now commands us to repent of the idolatry and paganism of Christmas and get ready for the Second Coming Rapture (going home) of the Bride of the Lord Jesus Christ.

We would do well to heed the warning of God, through His Prophet Jeremiah:

"Thus saith the LORD,
Learn not the way of the heathen".

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