Thursday, December 4, 2014

Christmas Tree Worship Origins

Overview

Before you buy that #Christmas_tree you should know that its origins are pagan and it is documented in the #bible.  The #Israelites were worshiping false gods under evergreen trees.  They were offering sacrifices under these green trees.  This is one of the reasons the 10 northern tribes were taken captive and also one of the reasons the first temple fell.  The Israelites took this pagan tradition with them into Europe.  Later this pagan practice was adopted by the church, even though there is biblical justification for doing so.  According to Wikipedia, tree worship otherwise known as the Christmas Tree started in Germany and early on the tree was also worshiped in Poland, Scandinavia, Estonia and Latvia.   

Yahweh told us how we are to worship him.  He gave us the feast days we are to celebrate and other practices for worshiping him.  Instead we have proclaimed our own traditions for worshiping Christ.  He did not command for us to worship under a green tree or evergreen tree.  In fact he stated that this practice done by the Canaanites was to be done away with:

Due 12:1 These are the statutes and the ordinances which you shall observe to do in the land which Yahweh, the God of your fathers, has given you to possess it, all the days that you live on the earth. 2 You shall surely destroy all the places in which the nations that you shall dispossess served their gods, on the high mountains, and on the hills, and under every green tree: 3 and you shall break down their altars, and dash in pieces their pillars, and burn their Asherim with fire; and you shall cut down the engraved images of their gods; and you shall destroy their name out of that place.

Christmas Tree Origins


Ezekiel tells us they were placing offerings under the green trees.  The Hebrew word for offering is nathan, which means to give, put or set.

Eze 6:13 You shall know that I am Yahweh, when their slain men shall be among their idols round about their altars, on every high hill, on all the tops of the mountains, and under every green tree, and under every thick oak, the places where they offered sweet savor to all their idols.

Jeremiah tells us they would cut a tree down from the forest, decorate it and mount it so that it stands upright.  Doesn’t this should like the Christmas tree?

Jer 10:1 Hear the word which Yahweh speaks to you, house of Israel! 2 Thus says Yahweh, "Don't learn the way of the nations, and don' t be dismayed at the signs of the sky; for the nations are dismayed at them. 3 For the customs of the peoples are vanity; for one cuts a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman with the axe. 4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it not move. 5 They are like a palm tree, of turned work, and don 't speak: they must be carried, because they can' t go. Don 't be afraid of them; for they can' t do evil, neither is it in them to do good." [Note:  these trees are different from the one in Genesis 2:17 since this one had the knowledge of good and evil.]
 

So the Israelites cut down a tree from the forest, decorated it, mounted it upright, and put offerings under it.  Just as the Europeans do today, we get a tree from the forest, decorate it, mount it upright, and put presents/offerings under it. We worship it by, opening present under it, taking pictures with it and singing Christmas carols around it.

Evil Green Tree Worship

According to the Yahweh, offerings and idol worshiping under green trees is evil and not right in his eyes: 

1 Kings 14:22 Judah did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and they provoked him to jealousy with their sins which they committed, above all that their fathers had done. 23 For they also built them high places, and pillars, and Asherim, on every high hill, and under every green tree; 24 and there were also sodomites in the land: they did according to all the abominations of the nations which Yahweh drove out before the children of Israel.

2 Kings 16:2 Twenty years old was Ahaz when he began to reign; and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem: and he didn 't do that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh his God, like David his father. 3 But he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, yes, and made his son to pass through the fire, according to the abominations of the nations, whom Yahweh cast out from before the children of Israel. 4 He sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, and on the hills, and under every green tree.

2 Kings 17:9 The children of Israel did secretly things that were not right against Yahweh their God: and they built them high places in all their cities, from the tower of the watchmen to the fortified city; 10 and they set them up pillars and Asherim on every high hill, and under every green tree; 11 and there they burnt incense in all the high places, as did the nations whom Yahweh carried away before them; and they worked wicked things to provoke Yahweh to anger;

2 Chron 28:1 Ahaz was twenty years old when he began to reign; and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem: and he didn 't do that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh, like David his father; 2 but he walked in the ways of the kings of Israel, and made also molten images for the Baals. 3 Moreover he burnt incense in the valley of the son of Hinnom, and burnt his children in the fire, according to the abominations of the nations whom Yahweh cast out before the children of Israel. 4 He sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, and on the hills, and under every green tree. 5 Therefore Yahweh his God delivered him into the hand of the king of Syria; and they struck him, and carried away of his a great multitude of captives, and brought them to Damascus.

Isaiah 57:4 Against whom do you sport yourselves? against whom make you a wide mouth, and put out the tongue? Aren 't you children of disobedience, a seed of falsehood, 5 you who inflame yourselves among the oaks, under every green tree; who kill the children in the valleys, under the clefts of the rocks?

Jer  2:20 For of old time I have broken your yoke, and burst your bonds; and you said, I will not serve; for on every high hill and under every green tree you did bow yourself, playing the prostitute.

Jer 3:13 Only acknowledge your iniquity, that you have transgressed against Yahweh your God, and have scattered your ways to the strangers under every green tree, and you have not obeyed my voice, says Yahweh.

Traditions


We do many things today according to our family traditions.  Many traditions, handed down to us, are not based on biblical commands but are pagan practices.  Here is what the New Testament states about holding to traditions:

Mark 7:11 But you say, 'If a man tells his father or his mother, "Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban {Corban is a Hebrew word for an offering devoted to God. }, that is to say, given to God;"' 12 then you no longer allow him to do anything for his father or his mother, 13 making void the word of God by your tradition, which you have handed down. You do many things like this. "

Col 2:8 Be careful that you don 't let anyone rob you through his philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the elements of the world, and not after Christ.

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