“It’s no wonder these men were called wise” – Outreach Media
It’s coming up to the holiday season again, a time I personally love for a number of reasons. I get to see my family, I get to eat and drink and be merry, I get some time off from the drudgery of work. But for many, this time of year marks one of the most important events on the calendar, and that is of course Christmas. And for Outreach Media, it’s a time to remind us what they think of us.
In Christian theology, Christmas is of course the time when we are supposed to remember the anniversary of the birth of their god-on-earth, Jesus. But there are many reasons to doubt that Dec 25 has any real significance either religiously or otherwise, other than it being an arbitrary date chosen on which to celebrate. It doesn’t take much digging to find many accounts as to why we celebrate on this date, including the ancient Roman solstice, and the end of the Saturnalia festival. But December 25th is what they all settled on, so we’re stuck with it.
In the northern hemisphere, many cultures celebrated in the heart of winter to keep spirits up during the long cold period with short dark days. People would bring evergreen trees and branches into their houses to brighten up the place, and exchange gifts of clothing and little morsels of food.In fact, all of the traditions that we associate with Christmas such as Santa Claus, Christmas trees, decorations, gift giving, food, family, etc. have their roots in either pagan or secular rituals, which have nothing whatsoever to do with the birth of Jesus Christ. In fact, it one weer to follow the bible closely, a true Christian would not ever allow the birth of their lord to be defiled by such barbaric practices as bringing a tree indoors!
“Thus says the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cuts a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither is it in them to do good.”
So take heed, true Christian, if you have a Christmas tree you go against the word of your god!
But I digress. More about the billboard. It depicts the 3 wise men of the bible, a token black guy, two bearded white guys, a decidedly white Mary and a blond baby Jesus. That’s right, not only did the Jesus of the bible look like a Roman man, he was born blond too! The image is of course a simple photo-shoot, so to really pick on their stylist is a cheap blow, but Christians need to remember, Jesus did NOT look like a white American or an Italian stud, in face he probably looked like a middle-eastern man of today.
It is pretty obvious why people would like their Jesus to be an Italianate stud-muffin, so that they can better relate to their personal saviour, but it simply would not have been the case. This actually begins to open a HUGE can of worms, which I won’t go into in detail. Let’s just day that the 3 wise men, who travelled to see the newborn Jesus during the time of King Herod in the year zero AD may not have existed at all. Why do I say this? Because King Herod died in the year 4 BC, so he could have never ordered the census as mentioned in the bible because he was already dead. (It has been pointed out to me that it was actually Augustus Caesar who ordered the census, but Herod had died before Jesus’ supposed birth.) This is just one example of historical inaccuracies in the story of Jesus, and further digging reveals much much more.
But enough Christian bashing for today. Whether he existed or not is beside the point. This time of year is one to celebrate and remember those whom you love, be near those who love you, and to give to those less fortunate than yourselves. Don;t be complacent and say there’s nothing you can do. Don’t pray to your god that things will get better. Go to Oxfam RIGHT NOW and donate some of your cash to those who actually need it.
And Happy Holidays to you!