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The First Commandment (Part 2)

Christmas Tree
Christmas Tree

The author was deeply offended by a recent Sunday service in Fairfield. An undecorated evergreen was upstaging the altar at the front of the sanctuary. The children's participation in the service was the largest part of the service, with the children decorating the tree, the lights being lit, ponsettias being distributed throughout the front of the sanctuary, and wreaths being hung. There was NO sermon that day. To the average individual, this seems perfectly acceptable and pleasantly entertaining. However, to one who has read the Bible in detail, this should be appalling!

"Thou shalt not plant thee a grove of any trees near unto the altar of the LORD thy God, which thou shalt make thee" (Dt 16:21). Other versions state not even a single tree belongs near the altar. There is good reason for this! There have been religions throughout all history which worship trees. The Christmas tree became a tradition of the holiday in the 16th century and was certainly NOT practiced by the early Christians who would have known about Deuteronomy 16:21. “Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good” (Jeremiah 10:2-5). By setting the tree on the platform near the altar, and upstaging its importance, then making it the center of the worship service, the church in Fairfield created an idol, breaking the second and first commandments.

You are encouraged to use your favorite search engine and do some research regarding the holidays you celebrate. Then you are encouraged to pray about them. Is what you are celebrating appalling to or approved by the Father? Peace in Christ.