Here is a suggestion on why Christmas is on December 25

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by Rubato 1, Dec 4, 2009.

  1. Rubato 1

    Rubato 1
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    I've heard many preachers say that there is no way that Christ was born in December, etc, but never heard a theological reason why it may have been placed there. This blog (actually quoting another article, which is linked as well) explains some interesting history...
     
    #1 Rubato 1, Dec 4, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 4, 2009
  2. Johnv

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    Jesus wasn't born on 12/25. His birth was preceded by Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem, due to a census. This type of travel simply wasn't done in or near December due to inhospitable and downright dangerous. weather conditions. Rome would have decreed a census at a time when travel conditions were favorable. This puts Jesus' birth closer to the late summer/early fall timeframe. This further coincodes with planetary conjunctions that would in the pagan world have been a predictor of the birth of a king, thus getting Herod's attention.

    A 12/25 birth makes no logical sense at all, plus, it is a matter of historical fact that 12/25 was not chosen based on whether Jesus was actually born on that day. Any attempt to shoehorn that day in as being the literal birthdate of Jesus is nothing more than Christians trying to apply their religions beliefs in a manner unintended by scripture or history.
     
  3. Rubato 1

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    I think it too much to assume impossibilities based upon possible climate factors. We know that Joseph was in a difficult situation, otherwise he would not have been forced to bring his expectant wife with him. To say that it is 'impossible' just because it is winter is a little presumptious [sp?]. I further doubt that Cesear took the weather conditions of Judah into account when decreeing a tax upon the majority of the known world!

    Did you read the linked article? ...
     
  4. Johnv

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    Yet it take many times that type of assuming to assume Jesus was born on 12-25.
    History says otherwise. A census was somethign that was done on frequent occaision. In fact, Rome had regular offers called censitores and censuales to conduct a census. An accurate census was crucial to imposing accurate taxes. It was in Rome's best interest to get the most accurate counts, which would have been done at time of the year when commerce travel and commercial routs were open and heavily used.

    I should give a nod to my Early Christian History professor for the fact that I can remember this stuff from years ago, but I can't remember what I had for breakfast this morning.
    I've seen it before, but I generally don't read fiction.
     
  5. Rubato 1

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    You did not read the article.
    It is by a well-respected historian in a well-respected magazine. It also contains some respectable content - you should read it.
     
  6. Johnv

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    The site isn't exactly "well respected". It is host to stories whic try to make a case fo the James ossuary being real (it's a forgery), and to the Shroud of Turin being authentic (it's a medieval work, not a 1st century burial cloth). The fact that it would also be host blogs about Jesus being born on 12-25 seems consistent, then.
     
  7. Revmitchell

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    Very good article thanks for posting this.
     
  8. saturneptune

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    Yes, thanks for posting, an interesting read. You know, there are all sorts of theories on this. One I heard once from a theological professor goes this way. According to old Jewish records, Zacherriah, father of John the Southern Baptist, was in the division of Abbijah, (Luke 1), which was serving duty in the temple the week of our June 24-30. Of course, if this is accurate, this would pinpoint the conception of John the Baptist at the same time. We know from Luke, that the Lord was conceived six month later, or late December. If that is the case, the Lord was born in late September.

    I have no idea if this is true, maybe some of those who have studied the history of the accuracy of Jewish records could chime in. Just another theory. I find these things fascinating.
     
  9. Rubato 1

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    *Bump*

    Hey! That must be Santa!
     
  10. Johnv

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    The quackery of the OP is still the same.

    The OP claim is made in a "Biblical Archeological Society" publication. The BAS is run by a guy who claims to be a noted amateur archeologist, but who is neither an archeologist nor noted for much aside from a lot of assertions without evidence. Outside this guy's assertions, there's no historical or archeological support for the assertions made in the article.

    The BAS article completely ignores the fact that Pope Julius I in the 4th century selected the winter solstice as the day to celebrate Christ's birth, setting it to coincide with the Roman Winter Festivals already associated with 12-25. This is verifiable in numerous historical references, including Eamon Duff's "Saints and Sinners: A History of the Popes" as well as the Catholic Encyclopedia.
     
  11. Rubato 1

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    JV, you obviously did not read all of the Catholic Encyclopedia's article yourself, otherwise you would see the basis for the cited writer's proposition, namely, Jesus having been concieved 6 mo after John, and thus born in Dec, etc.

    Where do you think the Pope got the idea anyway? He just say the Romans celebrating and decided that would be a good time to hold Christmas? Why don't you post a comment on the blog and see what the host has to say about it rather than spewing seeming nonsense into this forum?

    If you have some bone to pick with BAR (who doesn't?) don't allow that to prejudice everything that comes from it.
     
  12. Johnv

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    I have no particular bone to pick with them. But the fact is that 12-25 was chosen because it was winter solstace and already well-celebrated secularly, not because anyone though Christ was born on that day. Further, there's no archeological evidence outside the OP which supports a 12-25 DOB for Jesus.
     
  13. Rubato 1

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    Correct. There is no archeological evidence for any date for Christ's birth.
     
  14. Johnv

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    Sort of. Although we don't know exactly when Jesus was born, a detailed antropological study of the Jews of the first century will suggest that Christ birth would likely be somewhere in the fall. A fall birth makes logical sense. OTOH, a December birth for Christ just doesn't make sense antropologically.
     
  15. Rubato 1

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    Ahem. :sleep:
     
  16. Johnv

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    Asked ans answered. You're just repeating the same thing over and over, hoping that doing so will make it true.
     
  17. Rubato 1

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    Do you mean 'asked and answered'? I don't see your comments on the blog anywhere.
     

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