By Ron Halbrook
For the truth’s sake, Christ should be taken out of so-called Christmas. There is nothing wrong with a Seasonal Celebration including family gatherings, holiday decorations, exchange of gifts, respite from work, special foods, and a break for schools. But in the realm of religion, we dare not act in Christ’s name without having his revealed authority for what we do!
The Lord’s Word expressed his authority (Jn. 6:63; 12:48). The inspired Word of God makes His people “thoroughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Tim. 3:1617). By his “divine power,” the Lord “bath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness” (2 Pet. 1:3). We are to “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints,” and to “teach no other doctrine” (Jude 3; 1 Tim. 1:3). In order to act in true faith, we must act only as God’s Word directs: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17).
We know God loves us, because it is revealed in His Word (Jn. 3:16). We know that we must put full trust in Him if we are to please Him, because He revealed it (Heb. 11:6). We know “the gospel of Christ . . . is the power of God unto salvation,” for He told us (Rom. 1:16). We know God will remit our sins by the blood of Christ when we accept the free gift on His terms; believing the gospel, we must repent of our sins, confess Christ’s name, and be baptized “for the remission of sins” (Eph. 2:8-9; 1:7; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Rom. 10:10; 1 Pet. 3:21). Whatever God revealed we can know, and we dare not go beyond “that which is written” (1 Cor. 4:6; 2 Jn. 9).
“These things write I unto thee . . . that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:14-15). The New Testament teaches Christians how to conduct all the affairs of the church. We are to sing, pray, and proclaim God’s Word, and in addition on the first day of the week, partake the Lord’s Supper and give as we are prospered (Acts 2:42; 20:7; 1 Cor. 11:17-32; 16:1-2). These acts of worship in the assembly of the saints are authorized by Christ-we can read about them in the Bible-and no other.
Christ did not authorize any kind of “Mass” on any occasion. Nor did he authorize any other kind of action or day to be appointed as the celebration of his birthday. He did command us to remember his death in the Lord’s Supper each first day of the week. Why omit what he appointed, and appoint what he omitted’! The Bible tells of Noah’s ark, Christ’s birth, and Paul’s shipwreck, but does not appoint any of them to be celebrated, For the Truth’s sake, Christ should be taken out of “Christmas,” and Christians will not make the festivities of the year end religious, no matter what the world around us does.
Truth Magazine XXI: 10, p. 152
March 10, 1977