Birthday of the Sun

Birthday of the Sun

The fact that the most prominent holiday in the Christian yearly cycle is pagan in origin is relatively well known. Some Christian leaders argue for an abandonment of this pagan celebration while most observe this holiday and use the time as an opportunity to call attention to the message of Christianity.

Many churchmen justify the adoption of a pagan holiday with the argument that this was simply a historical circumstance. The expanding Church found that so many people were already celebrating this time, so instead of attempting to repress this celebration, the Church converted it from paganism to Christianity. The “conversion” of the holiday was achieved by artificially associating the Christian message with the observance of the holiday. This merger turned the commemoration of the birthday of the sun into a celebration that commemorates the birthday of the “son”.

Are these two celebrations really so different? If we look into the heart of the pagan celebration and worship we will see that no conversion was achieved. The Christian celebration is essentially just as idolatrous as the pagan celebration. The only change that was achieved was that the attention given to one idol is now turned to another.

The pagans chose their deities in the following manner. People would be inspired and overawed by various entities in the natural world. Be it the power and radiance of the sun, the mighty sound of thunder, the majestic beauty of a river or the magical appeal of the dark forces of the night. Instead of recognizing that these are but creations of the same Creator who granted us all the gift of existence the pagan would bend in submission towards the mysterious awe and majesty projected by these entities.

The heart of Christianity, in all of its manifestations, is the submission towards the aura projected by a certain human being. No one saw that this person create the world and no one saw this person standing as a second person in a triune godhead. These were theories developed by hearts that were already bent in submission to the aura associated with the personality of Jesus.

The worshippers of the sun and the worshippers of the “son” are both engaged in the same type of worship. They are both allowing themselves to be overwhelmed by the attributes inherent in a fellow citizen of this universe.

The witness of the Jew is that everything in this universe and all of the majesty, beauty, mystery, charisma and holiness that these entities may possess are all but gifts from the One Creator who stands above and beyond all of nature while at the same time sustaining and nurturing every detail of existence. It is to Him, and to Him alone, that our worship is due. Not only our own worship, but even those entities that overwhelm men with their majesty, beauty, holiness and mystery, they too, owe all worship to the One Creator.

The day will yet come when everyone and everything rejoices in the worship of the Creator (Psalm 98:7). May it happen soon and in our days.

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Yisroel C. Blumenthal

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11 Responses to Birthday of the Sun

  1. CP says:

    “The day will yet come when everyone and everything rejoices in the worship of the Creator (Psalm 98:7). May it happen soon and in our days.”

    And if it were to happen soon and in our days?; the Creator comes to His created through the agency of Messiah, will you treat him as you’ve treated Yeshua?

    How will you treat Messiah?

    • Jim says:

      CP,

      Your question relies on an unfounded assumption. It assumes that Jesus is supposed to be treated as the Messiah and that he has been somehow maltreated. But this is incorrect.

      When Messiah comes, I will treat him as the Messiah, and Jesus, as Jesus. That is to say that I will treat the legitimate Messiah with due honors, and Jesus, the impostor, as an impostor with all the dishonor this implies.

      This is much in the same way as I study the words of the true prophets and ignore the words of the false prophets. If a Mormon were to ask me if I would treat a true prophet as I will treat Joseph Smith, I will answer that of course I do not. And that is because Joseph Smith is a false prophet. The same goes for Jesus. Being a false prophet, I give his words no credence. On the other hand, I give great attention to the words of Moses. There is a world of difference between the two and I treat them accordingly.

      Jim

  2. Eleazar says:

    Thanks for the article, Rabbi. It is every timely for those of us who find this to be a difficult and overwhelming season, especially converts who come from and have Christian families. Every year we are bombarded by Christmas everywhere we go ( the war on Hanukkah? lol ) and by nearly person we meet. Even those who know I am Jewish wished me a “merry Christmas” as I left work for the weekend.This is in addition to those who make belittling or dismissive remarks about Hannukah ( “Oh yeah, well, happy Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa or whatever it is you guys do.” ).

    Some day it will change. The sooner the better.

  3. Dear my Pharisee friend,
    Thank you for unmasking the ignorance of Christianity!
    As a messianic gentile and a fellow brother in our Creator God, representing all other Christian brothers and sisters of the nations, i want to join with these N.T. verses in your worship to the ONE Creator. And I know my Jewish brothers and sisters will rather enjoy reading this than arguing.

    Matthew 4:10 Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written,
    “‘You shall worship the LORD your GOD
    and HIM ONLY shall you serve.’”

    Luke 11:27-28 As he said these things, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to him, “Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts at which you nursed!” But he said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of GOD and keep it!”

    Mark 10:17-18 And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except GOD ALONE.

    John 17:3 And eternal life is this: to know you, the ONE TRUE GOD, and him whom you sent, Yeshua the Messiah.

    Galatians 3:20 Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but GOD is ONE.

    1 Timothy 2:5 For there is ONE GOD, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus

    Jude 1:25 to the ONLY GOD our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and [fn]forever. Amen.

    • Dina says:

      Gean, for nearly two thousand years my forbears testified at great personal cost and even unto death that Jesus is a false messiah. Why do you think we would enjoy reading verses from the NT that declare his messiahship?

      • Eleazar says:

        Dina, he is trying to post the anti-trinitarian texts found in the NT as a way of finding a common ground with us. But yes, those same texts also proclaim the “lordship” and messiah-ship of Jesus. Gean is a non-trinitarian Christian, and there are literally millions of them if you include the JWs, some messianics and some Adventists. I see the rise of non-trinitarianism as the first step toward the understanding that the NT is a book of internal theological and historical contradictions that cannot be trusted. Christians themselves debate, ad nauseum, all of these issues and have even gone to war and shed blood over them.

        For a couple of years I debated against the trinity using those same texts Gean posted. For my efforts, I was called a “servant of the devil”, “spiritually blind” and “enemy of Christ” by my fellow “spirit-filled” Christians. Gean is treading a line that cannot be sustained. Eventually he will have to choose between Tanakh and the NT. Both cannot be correct.

        • Brother Eleazar! i am glad to know you for a couple of years through this blog. “I see the rise of non-trinitarianism as the first step toward the understanding that the NT is a book of internal theological and historical contradictions that cannot be trusted.”
          God has designed His Word to be mysterious, debatable, and curious so that people of God continue to gather to discuss, challenge, and find the treasures. You know that all the theolgoical mysteiries and seeming contradictions of the NT are also found in the Tanakh. Qohelet 1:9 “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.
          10.There is a thing of which [someone] will say, “See this, it is new.” It has already been for ages which were before us.”

      • Sister Dina, i am sorry if the verses made you uncomfortable. I have a question. When the national expectation of the advent of the Messiah has started in the Jewish history? And the Messiah had to fulfill all he was supposed to do at one time, or is he free to carry out his mission in his own wisdom in the course of history?

        • RT says:

          Gean, the verse were not wrongly chosen, it’s the verse that you did not quote and that we know are in the NT that are bother us. I agree with Eleazar, that non-Trinitarian belief is non-sustainable and only shows corruption. I don’t mind that much that you believe it, it’s up to everybody to believe whatever best fits them, as long as they don’t force it on other (and I believe you fall in that category). For a Jew though, it would be hard to separate your personal belief with the thousands who used those exact same verse to prove that they are monotheist (even if they are not) and to try to convert them to their beliefs.

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