Donna asked me to do a guest post for her today. We have been considering our traditions, studying days and festivals, looking for idols in our home, and growing and changing. Several of the past posts have been considering the Christmas holiday season and what it means to us. What did it use to mean? What should it mean?
Last year we understood the potential idolatry we were bringing into our home with santa claus. We removed that last year. Later on, our pastor had us go through our home in each room and pray for God to show us idols in our home. I removed all the tiki bar stuff I had collected which were actual idols for some, and decorations for us. But it got me to thinking about idols. If someone were to come into my home that did not know me and saw a tiki god, what would they think? What would they think if it was a god to them? I did not ever worship a tiki, but it was in my home. Now it is gone.
What other idols did we have? After reading Jeremiah 10:3-5 we decided that for us, a Christmas tree in our home was not pleasing to God. We've heard Pastor MacAurther explain these verses as not relating to a modern Christmas tree, but I am not convinced.
The pagans used to bring fresh cut trees into their homes and decorate them with silver and gold. If we do the same now, knowing we don't worship them as idols, what does God think of it? The actions of the pagan are brought into our home. For us, we can't do it any longer.
Next we approach the Christmas day. I am glad that it happens on Sunday this year. Our day will be much like all Sundays in that we will get up, go to church, and have a good worship service. We are flip flopping on do we say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays. Paul wrote about days and idol meat in Romans 14:5.
One man considers one day more sacred than another, another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. He who regards one day as special does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone. If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living. You then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your bother? For we will all stand before God's judgment seat. It is written: As surely as I live, says the Lord, every knee will bow before me every tongue will confess to God. So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. Therefore let us stop passing judgement on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother's way.
So, we will worship on Sunday. We are going to work hard to be fully convinced on our own mind. We are going to do this without pride or by putting a stumbling block out there for anyone. Our new church has a tradition of cleaning out the freezer on the Wednesday prior to Christmas and having a potluck dinner after observing the Lord's Supper. We embrace this new tradition. May our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ bless you and keep you.