Christian Groups defending Christmans extreeme?

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by Thinkingstuff, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. Thinkingstuff

    Thinkingstuff
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  2. Revmitchell

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    This right here shows they are either trying to reframe the debate or just don't get it.Either way it is false.How in the world do you not get it.
     
  3. Thinkingstuff

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    Maybe they don't get it however our Actions have left that impression how in the world did you miss that?
     
  4. Revmitchell

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    When I said "you" I really did not intend to direct that to you personally. What I should have said was "they". And I do not believe it is the impression they are claiming.
     
  5. Thinkingstuff

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    Oh I miss understood. However, I honestly do believe its the impression we're giving. I don't like the commercialism anymore than anyone else yet All I've talked about is the same talking points mentioned in the article. How can we change what we are saying and doing to get accross the right idea? Boycott shopping during the season? Here My church just went through being turned down by the mall to do our handbell thing we do every year. However, because of a lot of letters to the owners the Mall turned around and allowed us to play though they really didn't like my church's "religious" theme. Which I found funny. For one we are a Church and Christmas has always had religious themed music. No one is singing by the way its all hand bells.
     
  6. Revmitchell

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    No it was my error.
     
  7. Salty

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    Wow and only 16 days to go and Rev mitchell would have went a full year without being wrong :smilewinkgrin:
     
  8. preachinjesus

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    I'm a fan of the Advent Conspiracy.

    Here is a good summation:

    They urged congregants to spend less on presents for friends and family, and to consider donating some of the money they saved as a result.

    and later

    A movement like the Advent Conspiracy is countercultural on two fronts - not just fighting the secular idea that Christmas is a month-long shopping and decorating ritual, but the powerful conservative notion that the holiday requires acknowledgement from the nation's retailers to be truly meaningful.

    I know several families who are ditching Christmas this year, following the example of a couple other families from last year, and taking the money they had budgetted for presents and taking their entire family on a mission trip over the holiday. This aspect of the idea is one I'm a huge fan of and encourage others to prayerfuly consider.

    As a culture we have absolutely given over to crazied, blind consumerism around Christmas. This past month my family and I (and several others from our community) decided to take an intentional stand and not spend any money on Black Friday. We didn't make it a big deal, we just hung out, ate leftovers, avoided shopping, and watched football. It was absolutely worth it too.

    One of the greatest threats confronting the entire Church today is the rampant religion of consumerism that treats people as products and drives home the false gospel of buy-it-and-be-empowered which tries to create happiness from stuff. You can't do it. The Christmas holiday has become so indentured to big business to help them close out the year that it has lost significant spiritual meaning. (Now maybe this is what we get for adopting a pagan holiday...but I think we can redeem it.)

    Now some of this can be taken to an extreme. We still buy Christmas presents for our family but never spend too much money on anyone. We keep it in check. (Personally I would love to get away with giving a donation to the Human Fund for everyone, but then again I love the idea of the Festivus for the Rest of Us too.) We don't go into debt, we have a budget and everything falls into it. We also have gotten in the habit of taking our budget and using 10% of it to give to a special offering.

    I like the Advent Conspiracy. I think it is good if used appropriately. As a staff we have asked our people to consider what they are going to give others outside of their families first before what they give their families.
     
  9. Revmitchell

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    No such monster but then libbies need to misrepresent things when they have no foundation themselves.
     
  10. Crabtownboy

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    My wife and I decided we would not give any present to the other. Instead we have sent money that we would have spent to a favorite charity.
     
  11. abcgrad94

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    I dunno about "Advent Conspiracy." I mean, shouldn't we be doing this anyway without needing a cool, hip new bandwagon to jump on?

    It's one thing if we practice frugality and devotion because God laid it on our hearts to do so, but to me it doesn't seem genuine if we're doing it just to follow the latest Christian trend.
     
  12. windcatcher

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    I'm gaining considerable ambivalence over the fan fare of pros and cons over December 24-25.

    The deception:
    1) Santa Claus was a lie perpetuated by society and upheld in my home when I was a child. It was the only diliberate lie upheld by my well meaning parents. But, when a child learns the truth about mr Claus and gifts... visiting every home and child by flying reindeer and coming down chimneys which not all homes have...... how does a child reconcile these stories to the real miracles taught in the home like parting the Red Sea, Jesus walking on the water, turning water into wine, raising Lazarus from the dead, Jesus death and resurrection, angels visiting Mary, Martha, shepherds? And as one gets older and learns.... the significance or miracle of the virgin birth?

    2) The celebration..... goodies are baked, many adults drink, the egg-nog gets spiked and some may be share with children, a tree is cut and decorated, gifts are bought and given ---some in sincere affection and some for socially expected reasons. In the years of early childhood.... I don't ever recall drawing the name of someone I knew well enough to give a gift which showed some thought..... and mother made the purchases anyway to keep the family of 5 kids on budget. Years later when SS, public school, and work place.... when it involved a person placing 3 items on a wish list which fell within the decided amount of purchase..... it seemed so superficial....... What were we celebrating anyway? Why pretend surprise? Why not just celebrate life and joy and have fun together? How does this relate to Jesus and his birth? We celebrate his birth by wanting things we don't get at other times of the year and by giving other people gifts, some for the wrong reasons..... and we bring no gift for Jesus?

    3) Some of the pageants celebrate just the birth of the Christ child. Some make an attempt to tie it in with the crucifixtion........ but I've yet to see any tie in the wages of sin and the meaning of the cross as a necessary payment of debt to remove the penalty of judgement.

    The emotion:
    1) The confusion of fantasy with the real..... angels visiting and santa flying a sleigh through the air..... wise men bringing gifts and santa bringing presents.... elves making toys, toys which come alive in a ballet, ......sitting on the lap of a godsize obese man in red and white, suposedly who loves children and takes their wishes and takes their confession "have you been a good little boy/girl?" A christmas carole with ghosts taking a person through time and walls to transform Scrooge's redemption by good deeds. A miracle where santa goes on trial? ...... Oh the emotions of magic and magical thinking which all of this can spawn in the mind of a child, and a tendancy to continue the indulgence into maturity as a means of escaping reality..... or opening one up to the other suggestions of occult and drugs by which they may revert to escape.

    2) The expectation of joy and surprise and magic memories falsely created, which occurrs around such seasons.... which may be changed and intruded upon by altered circumstances...... the death of a parent or child, the foreclosure of a home, the unexpected information one is terminally ill, the divorce of parents, a war parting couples and children from parents...... a move which separates persons or people from the familiar of community and family, the nostalgia of christmas memories built up aroung the excesses of decorations, celebrations, family and friends and commercialization...... and so little counter balanced by worship, prayer, sharing the gospel and remembering the poor and thanksgiving.... to celebrate Jesus... no wonder many suicides occur at this time of year or shortly afterward..... when the past can seem more real and so different from the present or expectation for the future. (Remember, not all who celebrate christmas are Christian or ..... for that matter..... not all Christians come to a maturity in their faith at the same time.... and fewer still will challenge the culture and practices of their beginnings to separate the fiction and fantasy and excess of emotion from fact.)
    ----------------------------------------------------
    Nowhere in the New Testament is there a recording of the early church celebrating the birth of Jesus. This doesn't mean it didn't happen. The first Christians were jewish and continued their practices of celebrating the feasts. The feast were given as a foreshadow of things to come. The gentiles which became Christians, probably included some of these celebrations when fellowshipping with jewish believers. The passover....... the cross and the blood on the door post.... the feast of tabernacles..... God dwelling amongst us, tabenacled in the flesh..... aroung the end of summer or early fall..... I don't know the dates.

    What really is "Christmas"? The mass is a celebration of the death. The death of whom? The RC still have Christ on a cross. But WE KNOW he came down! Our calendars have been changed from that which was observed by the Jews. The months and the days are arrangements of pagen dieties. October stands for 8, November for 9, and December for 10. That arrangement would place the end of the year somewhere around Feburary..... Winter.... from a season of death to a season of death. The jewish calendar begins in the spring... from the beginings of life to return to life. Genesis says the evening and the morning were the first day..... etc. But our days begin at midnight, a time of darkness and move through daylight to return to darkness. But God gave us from darkness into light.
    ----------------------------------------------------

    I believe we should celebrate the birth of Jesus.... but I don't believe we celebrate it rightly by upholding the timing of the celebration and incorporating those pagen and fantasy ideas into our celebration. I'm not even sure it is appropriate to celebrate as "Merry" what could be considered a mass for the dead or a 'goodbye' to Christ. There was a time we could have plead ignorance...... but when so many of our pastors are educated beyond this ignorance.... and so many within our congregation are becoming more informed..... why don't we return to the honesty and integrity of the faith in our practices and start teaching it to our children? Why are we afraid of undoing the farce which was thrust upon us and preserve traditions which are false and have become almost meaningless to a world who knows no distinction and sees no difference in testimony. This would not mean that we couldn't participate in those benevolent practices like giving to the poor or helping families in need at this time. But to associate this season with the birth of Jesus and then to embellish that with all the decoration and gift giving seems more an offering to mammon than to God.

    I'll admit that this is a recent conviction of mine which I've transitioned to over considerable years of thought and time. I would not wish to impose it upon others. I do think it deserves some careful examination. Why do we continue to debate and defend a lie which was perpetuated on our predessors by a 'church' (RC) which adopted pagen symbols and incorporated its culture into the culture and customs of Christians. Truth can stand. A lie should be exposed. No Virginia, there never was a santa claus: A satan claws ----yes maybe, and we unwittingly contribute to his worship every year.
     
    #12 windcatcher, Dec 16, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2009

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