“Madonna and Child” by Bartolomé Esteban

We celebrate Christmas,” writes the staff at the conservative Baptist website Cobblestone Road. However, “some Christians choose not to.”

“I’m not here to tell you that people who celebrate Christmas are going to hell,” writes author Hannah Jurgelis for the website Dreaming of Perfect. “I don’t think that this is a salvation issue. But, I do think that this is something that can cause people to think twice.”

“Nativity,” a stained glass window by Edward Burne Jones (1833-1898)

Christmas is an abomination in the sight of the Lord, writes Roanoke, Virginia, pastor Harry Bethel, “There is a season of the year during which there is more drunkenness and revelry, and voluntary indebtedness is more prevalent, than any other time of the year. What I am referring to is the Christmas season. Many well-meaning Christians display slogans such as ‘Let’s Put Christ Back Into Christmas’ or ‘Jesus Is The Reason For The Season.’ But the truth is that Christ never was in Christmas and it is not Jesus, but Satan who is the reason for the season. Should anyone question my devotion to, or love for, Jesus because of my attack on the widely accepted tradition of celebrating Christmas,” continues Bethel, “let it be known that I love Jesus Christ with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind, and all my strength. And the question that should be asked regarding the subject at hand should not only be what is wrong with celebrating Christmas, but also what is right with it?”

“Nativity” by Guido Reni (1575-1642)

“One day I happened to catch a TV preacher denouncing the celebration of Christmas,” writes seminary professor J. Hampton Keathley. “He was saying that Christ could not have born in December. He used some Old Testament passages to show how the Christmas tree was idolatrous --  that it is a pagan holiday.”

“Is the Christmas holiday rooted in paganism?” asks the Cobblestone Road staff. “Yes.” But that’s not the end of the argument. “Christians are not pagans and the Christmas holiday for hundreds of years been associated with the Lord Jesus. So how can we find balance? The Lord never instructed us to celebrate His birth. Most likely Jesus was not even born in the month of December. The Bible does not record what date Jesus was born. Nowhere in the Bible will you find a commandment to ‘celebrate Christmas.’ The Bible says that we are to remember the Lord’s death and resurrection.”

“Holy Family” by Giovanni Cariani (1487-1547)

“But even so,” Cobblestone points out, “we believe this time of year is one of the best times afforded to the Christian to share the Good News that Jesus saves! Since this is a Christian holiday, we can lift up the name of Jesus to a lost and dying world. Jesus is the Reason for the season! The greatest opportunity to share the Gospel message is now…why Jesus came– to save His people from their sins. The message of the manger must always point people to the Cross– the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.”