I was recently told that I, as a pastor, should be very concerned about the “War on Christmas.”
I must confess, I am not concerned with what the world does with Christmas.
It is a little known fact that Christmas used to be illegal to celebrate in America. The Puritans didn’t like it because it was Catholic–Christ-Mass. Do you see it? Puritans aren’t Catholic. Boo Catholics.
Now, I’m not suggesting Christmas should be illegal, I’m suggesting that I don’t care what the world does with Christmas and I feel no obligation as a Christian to be bothered by the “War on Christmas.”
What concerns me more than what the world does with Christmas, is what Christians do with Christmas.
Take this picture for instance:
The sleigh was all packed, the reindeer were fed,
But Santa still knelt by the side of his bed,
“Dear Father, ” he prayed, “Be with me tonight.
There’s much work to do and my schedule is tight.
My sack will hold toys to grant all kids’ wishes.
The supply will be endless like the loaves and the fishes.
I can do all these things, Lord, only through You.
I just need your blessing, then it’s easy to do.
I do this only to honor the birth of the One,
That was sent to redeem us, Your most Holy Son.
So to all of my friends, lest Your glory I rob,
Please, Lord, remind them who gave me this job.”
OK, here’s where Jeff’s head explodes.
I just, I don’t even, I mean, come on, seriously?
The book of Ezekiel is about the downfall of Israel and Jerusalem, the dispersion of the Jewish people because they broke their Covenant with God.
Ezekiel says one of the main reasons why they were judged is because they lost the ability to discern between the sacred and the profane.
Sacred things are thing set apart for a purpose, things that are holy and sanctified.
Profane things are common, ordinary, every day usage kind of things.
Israel treated Sacred things like Profane things and they brought the Profane into what was Sacred. They lost their way.
I am not saying Santa kneeling before the manger photos are equivalent to the sin of Israel. I am saying it’s headed in that direction.
Santa is fictional. He’s not real. What confusion does this cause to kids? Is Jesus fictional too?
More than likely, the sincere attempt with this picture and poem is to elevate Christ. Our traditions bow before Jesus.
I get it. I know.
But I think the exact opposite occurs. I think instead we are yoking together the profane with the sacred.
I feel bad going after things like this, I really do. But where is the line between making a point and being blasphemous?
For me, this crosses the line. It’s sentimentalism that fails to keep a distinction between the sacred and the profane, and by doing so, ends up profaning the sacred.
If you want to celebrate Christmas, go for it. If you don’t want to, then don’t. But try and keep the blasphemy to a minimum.