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Posts Tagged ‘Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies’

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies: Christmas and Sigillaria

Do the Nativity sets Christians use actually have their origins in the pagan Roman festival called Sigillaria? Sigillaria Macrobius in Saturnalia 1.11.46-50 discusses the Sigillaria–a festival that involves the purchase and giving of little human figures and candles. The fact that little figurines were used in this pagan Roman festival is the basis for the claim that Christians stole this idea to make their own Nativity Sets. This festival, Sigillaria, seems to have been a market day rather than a religious feast, but is closely associated with Saturnalia. And there too, the date has nothing to do with the dates   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies: Christmas and Juvenalia

December 20th, 2014 1 comment

Did Christianity Steal the Date of Pagan Winter Solstice Celebrations? Juvenalia is one of those Roman festivals that is claimed as a winter solstice celebration that was borrowed or baptized by Christians for Christmas. But was it even a winter solstice celebration? The Mis-Use of Roman Records-Juvenalia When modern critics of Christian Christmas make claims that Christians stole the solstice celebrations they usually mix together their ideas of Roman, Germanic, Nordic, and Celtic winter celebrations into an anachronistic mash or impossibly conflicting claims. The method is to overwhelm people with their supposed “information.” There is just too much data for   More…

Christ Myth Theory [Jesus is a copy-cat]

December 16th, 2014 3 comments

This particular claim toward pagan sources for Christianity and Christian Holy Days goes under various names: Jesus Myth Theory, Jesus Mythicism, Mythicism, Copy-cat Theory, and probably other terms. The basic claim is that Christ is a fake: an unoriginal copy-cat of some other supposedly more ancient pagan god or gods. These claims are bunk. Both historians and Biblical theologians have been very thorough in debunking these claims since their earliest times. A common example that circulates on the web, Twitter, and Facebook is the following graphic: Most people who share this kind of post do not have the intellectual integrity   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies: All Hallows’ Eve in the Mediaeval Church and the Reformation

October 31st, 2014 1 comment

On All Hallows’ Eve 1517 a monk named Martin Luther posted a list of points for discussion and debate at the University of Wittenberg campus church. The campus church is named All Saints’ Church. The regular bulletin board for such announcements was the front church door. All Saints’ Church was the largest repository of relics of the saints outside of Rome. Many of those relics would be put on display on All Saints’ Day. Indulgences would be granted to those who came to the Church to view the relics of the saints on that day. The location, the date, the   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies: All Saints’ Day/Eve and Samhain

All Saints’ Eve, All Saints’ Day: Origins and Samhain-ization Today it seems that everyone knows that Halloween is originally a Celtic pagan holy day named Samhain [pronounced: Sow-in] which the Christian Church supplanted for the sake of forcing pagans to convert to Christianity. Obviously, in this line of thought, Christianity has nothing of it self to offer and must co-opt, adopt, adapt, and use non-Christian sources for the sake of gaining converts from the world outside of Christianity. A read through the Old Testament will show that the people of God have many times adopted religious practices and celebrations from   More…

Redeeming Christian Holy Days from Pagan Lies: Nativity of St. John (Part 3)

This is the third article on the Nativity of St. John. This article will deal with the Neo-Pagan practice of claiming Celtic origins, “Blame it on the Celts,” or “Claim it’s from the Celts.” We’ll also look at documented German and wider European practices. Keep this question in mind as we conclude this series: Is it realistic to think that the Church Fathers of the 1st and 2nd centuries went to the extreme of sending out scouts to the British Isles, to western and northern Europe in order to find out when ancients pagans held their festivals so that the   More…

Redeeming Christian Holy Days from Pagan Lies: Nativity of St. John (Part 2)

 The Claims about Pagan Origins for St. John’s Nativity This is the second of three articles on the Nativity of St. John and its relationship with the Pagan Midsummer. In the previous article we looked at the documentation about the origins of the Feast of St. John’s Nativity. In this article we will look at the claim about ancient pagan origins and the information available to evaluate these claims.   The dating of St. John’s day on or near the Summer solstice, a.k.a. Midsummer’s Day, has made very fertile ground for conjecture and historical claims that Christianity invented this holiday   More…

Redeeming Christian Holy Days from Pagan Lies: Nativity of St. John (Part 1)

This is the first part of three on the Nativity of St. John the Baptist/Midsummer Day June 24th is celebrated as St. John’s Day, also called the Nativity of St. John the Baptist. This festival is part of the cycle of liturgical dates tied to the date of Christmas. The early Church had already established December 25th as the liturgical festival of the Nativity of Christ. For example, this is demonstrated by documents from: before 215 A.D. in Alexandria, Egypt (St. Clement’s Stromata), before 235 A.D. in Rome (Hippolytus of Rome writes of the festival in his Chronicon and in   More…

Redeeming Christian Holy Days: St. Walpurga and Beltane

The evening of April 30th through May 1st is a significant date in the modern neo-Pagan and Wiccan calendar. It is called: Beltane, Witches’-eve, Witches’ Sabbath, May eve’, May Day, and Walpurgisnacht (and variants). Today the main significance that is emphasized it that this date is exactly 6 months opposite that of Samhain/Hallowe’en and therefore a significant Pagan date that has been somewhat “baptized” by the Church. There are several historical issues to separate out and examine for these May 1st festivals. What we will see, based on the actual historical evidence that survives to us, is that May 1st   More…

Redeeming Christian Holy Days: Another Bunny Attacks

A brief note on the misuse of Bodleian Library Manuscript Bodl. 264 Folio 21 This image is now being used to demonstrate pagan origins of the Easter Bunny: An example from California State University-San Marcos The drawing is from Prudence Jones and Nigel Pennick‘s 1995/7 A History of Pagan Europe, a Neopagan revisionist history and polemic against Christianity. In Jones’ and Pennick’s book the image is used as an example to prove that pagan rituals survived even though they were repressed by the church. The image is used in the context of equating Christianity with Nazism in the way it persecuted   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies-Easter 2

This is a reposting of a pair of articles published last year on the origins of Easter and some Easter traditions. The sources are given so that the reader can better be able to debunk the popular “historical” nonsense about the origins of Easter. The whole series is available at Diatheke Christianity and Paganism. — Second Part: Attacks On The Name and Traditions There are three main things people attack about this Holy Day: They claim that it is pagan because the name Easter is from a pagan goddess. They claim that Easter eggs are a symbol of pagan worship,   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies-Easter 1

This is a reposting of a pair of articles published last year on the origins of Easter and some Easter traditions. The sources are given so that the reader can better be able to debunk the popular “historical” nonsense about the origins of Easter. The whole series is available at Diatheke Christianity and Paganism. — Easter is the English/Germanic name for the Festival of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. This particular Feast Day is the heart and center of the whole liturgical practice of the Christian Church Year. Because it is at the center it is under great attack by   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies — Ash Wednesday and Lent

Image via Wikipedia Falat Julian Ash Wednesday, watercolor, 78 x 113 cm (detail) So, what are the supposed pagan origins of Ash Wednesday and Lent? There are two aspects of Ash Wednesday and Lent that need to be emphasized. First is the historical nature of the forty days of Lent; the second is the use of ash on Ash Wednesday. To put it plainly: the claim that Ash Wednesday and Lent are based on pagan origins is a relatively new fiction that comes out of several different sources. First is the irresponsible work of Alexander Hislop and those who followed   More…

Redeeming Holy Days from Pagan Lies — Ash Wednesday and Lent

Image via Wikipedia Falat Julian Ash Wednesday, watercolor, 78 x 113 cm (detail) So, what are the supposed pagan origins of Ash Wednesday and Lent? There are two aspects of Ash Wednesday and Lent that need to be emphasized. First is the historical nature of the forty days of Lent; the second is the use of ash on Ash Wednesday. To put it plainly: the claim that Ash Wednesday and Lent are based on pagan origins is a relatively new fiction that comes out of several different sources. First is the irresponsible work of Alexander Hislop and those who followed   More…

Redeeming Holy Days-Candlemas/Presentation

January 31st, 2014 1 comment

Candlemas is February 2nd, forty days after the birth of Christ it is the Festival of the Purification of Mary. The Gospel Lesson for this festival is Luke 2:22-40. Perhaps this particular festival does not loom as large in significance to many Christian readers. Even more unfortunately, it seems to be overlooked in Lutheranism today. The theological importance of Christ’s presentation at the Temple, Mary’s fulfillment of the Law of Purification, the meeting with Simeon and Anna, and the words of Simeon to Mary and the Nunc Dimittis are essential to appreciating the Humiliation of the Son of God when   More…