Last week I gave a synopsis of 10 different beliefs which have nothing to do with Christianity. This week I want to explore the challenge we may (or may not) experience when we think of the birth of our Savior.
Was He or was He not born on December 25?
There have been many things said about this, some quite disparaging.
Some say that date was adopted in the 4th century by Emperor Constantine of the Roman Empire. It’s believed that he became a convert to Christianity and used his authority as emperor to establish one date when all who believe will celebrate.
Others say that, yes, followers of Jesus determined to celebrate His birth but by the time several hundred years had passed they couldn’t remember exactly when He was born.
Those who have no love for Christians say things like, “If they can’t even correctly identify the date of their god’s birth, how can you and I believe anything else?” And those who claim to be Christian but don’t celebrate any of the occasions mainstream Christianity finds important say, “This is why you need to be part of our noninclusive group. We don’t celebrate so we don’t get it wrong by mistake.”
Then there’re people like my husband, who celebrates birthdays not because that date is important but because he’s happy that person was born and is alive. Phrased differently, he’s celebrating the person, not the date. In fact, in our home we celebrate our birthdays the entire month, which frees us up to make much of the other person at any point not just a set 24 hours.
So. Is it important or not? Is this a make-or-break deal? Frankly, that’s a decision you have to make for yourself. For me, it’s a no-brainer, and not just because I grew up not celebrating. Nor is it because the last few years in that religion those who insisted they refused to celebrate still wished each other “happy birthday” on the sly. No, the reason I don’t give it a second thought is because I focus on the big picture. The Old Testament spoke of a Messiah who would come to earth, be born of a virgin, then grow up to teach others the Law of Love, and die to prove its veracity. After that, He’d rise again from the dead, doing so (as He said) of His own volition, thus making His Father’s dearest wish come true: restored relationship with all His children.
That’s why I believe. And it’s also why I don’t care about dates. The universal truth, universal law is “Love conquers all,” and it has.
Whatever you decide, I pray you know all of Heaven’s best is yours.