Put away the foreign gods which are among you – Joshua 24:23
It’s the Nativity season and wise men are nowhere to be found. That’s because the church celebrates the birth of Christ on the wrong month. And on a pagan holiday. Jesus of Nazareth was born during the fall Biblical feasts, not the winter solstice.
God shows His contempt for Christmas in both the Old and New Testaments, although the term isn’t used directly. At least two pagan deities mentioned in Scripture are linked to Christmas. The LORD identifies them in Amos 5:26 – Sikkuth and Chiun. The Hebrew word for Chiun, kiyuwn, means detestable or filthy thing. God tells the prophet Amos these deities have defiled Israel. Both names represent the harvest god Saturn, which is significant.
Stephen, a church deacon and the first Christian martyr, makes a reference to Saturn in Acts 7:43. He quotes our Amos passage but substitutes the name Remphan for Chiun. Remphan is an Egyptian name for Saturn.
Saturn is the pagan connection to Christmas. The Roman festival of Saturnalia, which honored this pagan god, was assimilated into Christianity in the fourth century. The church converted large numbers of pagans by promising they could continue to celebrate Saturnalia, a popular Roman holiday. One problem. Saturnalia, a week-long celebration in late December, had nothing to do with Christ. To remedy this, Christian leaders assigned the last day of Saturnalia, Dec. 25, as Jesus’ birthday.
Now that we’ve unmasked Christmas let’s go back to the book of Amos. Hear God’s complaint in 5:21-23:
I hate, I despise your feast days, and I do not savor your sacred assemblies. Though you offer Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them, nor will I regard your fattened peace offerings. Take away from Me the noise of your songs, for I will not hear the melody of your stringed instruments.