Archive for the ‘Resurrection Day’ Category

The Winter Time Birth of Jesus and What I Have Learned About It.


Luke 2:7-20


7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. 10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. 15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. 16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. 17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. 18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.


The Birth of Jesus Christ and the shepherds coming to worship him just after his birth is a wonderful and true story.  However there are flaws in the rationale of celebrating the birth of Jesus on December 25th.  Tradition has it that Jesus was born in the winter.  However, all biblical accounts would have made it either, late March or early April, or late August through September.  The shepherds would not take the flocks out to pasture during the rainy season (which usually started in October) or winter.  Winter would be something like our winter in the Southern United States, particularly, southern Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona plus all of Florida.  This causes quite a bit of consternation on the part of most traditionalists, who have always celebrated the Birth of Our Savior on Dec 25th.  It is truly not because of the way things were worded in the Bible but because of misinterpretation and misunderstanding of the region and the region’s customs and the working constraints that the shepherds were under.  In fact one of the most popular songs during the Christmas season is the English carol The First Noel.   The carol is considered to come from the 17th century.   It was edited and lyrics were added by William B. Sandies and Davies Gilbert in 1823. It was arranged in a four part hymn style by English composer John Strainer and published in 1871.  The carol leads the listener to believe ‘it was a cold winter’s night with snow so deep with shepherds in fields where they lay’.  Now if you know anything about snow you will not find it on the ground in the lower elevations of the subtropical regions.  Israel is in one of those regions.  However, it will be cool enough that shepherds would not have their flocks out at night in this type weather.  The sheep would be in a covered sheep hold and in some cases caves where they could guard the entrance from wolves and other intruders.

Unfortunately for the majority of us this causes a problem.  We have always celebrated the Birth of Christ on Dec. 25th.  Even our churches have always done so.  It is tradition to do so.

Whatever you decide to do with this information that I have just presented to you, know one thing… it is not when you celebrate the Birth of Christ but that you honor Our Lord.  And by honoring Him we worship Him.  We have set aside a special day to honor His birth and also a special day to honor His death and resurrection.  It should not discourage us that the actual date of His birth is not given.  We do not have a definitive date of His death and resurrection either; we celebrate it at the same time of the year every year because it was recorded that The Jewish Passover meal was the Last Supper.  We should go forward with our celebration of Christmas with the knowledge that we are honoring and worshiping Him.

However that is not to mean that we should not honor the Lord every day of our lives,  We should remember and honor HIM everyday.  We should all also gather together on the Lord’s Day (the first day of the week [Sunday]) and worship with song, praise, prayer and the preaching of the Holy Scriptures; this is another way to honor HIM.


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Easter, the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

We do not know the day or time of Jesus first coming.  It is celebrated on one universal day that was set aside by early Roman Catholic Church officials and adopted by the majority of Christianity as December 25th.  Jesus told us in Matthew 24:36 “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.”  We assume that he was talking about his return because of the context of the following verses.  However as it stands, without the context of the following sentences, we can make the assumption that he was talking about he first coming also.  We know not the exact day or hour of when Christ was born. (His First physical coming)

However we do know the exact day Jesus was Crucified.  He was Crucified on the day before* Passover.  Passover and Holy week have coincided since the Sunday that Jesus triumphantly entered Jerusalem riding on the back of a young donkey and people laying branches of palm trees in His path.  That day also marked the beginning of Passover week.  Passover has been celebrated since ancient times when Moses was getting Pharaoh to let Israel leave Egypt.  The reason for Passover is described in Exodus 12:3-49.   Passover has been celebrated since that time on the last day of the week after the first full moon after or on the Vernal (Spring) Equinox**.  The Vernal Equinox usually occurs on March 21.

*The days in those times were considered Evening and Morning as proscribed in Genesis chapter 1.

**According to the Bible, Jesus’ death and resurrection occurred around the time of the Jewish Passover, which was celebrated on the first full moon following the vernal equinox.  This soon led to Christians celebrating Easter on different dates. At the end of the 2nd century, some churches celebrated Easter on the day of the Passover, while others celebrated it on the following Sunday.  In 325CE the Council of Nicaea established that Easter would be held on the first Sunday after the first full moon occurring on or after the vernal equinox. From that point forward, the Easter date depended on the ecclesiastical approximation of March 21 for the vernal equinox.  (retrieved from timeanddate.com April 5,2012)

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