Pastor Kumuyi Is Right: Christmas Is Idolatrous
by Ugochukwu Ejinkeonye
The recent statement by the General Overseer of the Deeper Christian Life Ministry, Pastor W.F. Kumuyi, that Christmas is idolatrous has attracted widespread reactions. Pastor Kumuyi was quoted in the ‘PUNCH’ newspaper of December 13, 2013, as saying: “We don’t celebrate Christmas. It actually came from idolatrous background. That is why you don’t hear us sing what they call Christmas
carol. Never! … When you find anybody coming in, or any leader, trying to introduce the idolatry of mystery Babylon that they call Christmas, and you want to bring all the Christmas carol saying that is the day that Jesus was born, and you don’t find that in the Acts of the Apostles or in the early church, then you don’t find that in the church either. If you don’t know that before, now you know.”
These are indeed weighty, unsettling words on a widely cherished festival. The reactions they immediately stirred were, therefore, to be expected. However, it was a very courageous assertion by Pastor Kumuyi and I would love to pitch my tent with those who insist that he is right, and that those attacking him are either doing so out of sheer lack of adequate information on the matter or, worse, unwittingly betraying their reluctance to let go of a cherished idol.
Now, despite the din, pomp and fanfare that usually mark this annual December 25 ceremony called Christmas, I have for many years now excused myself from everything that has to do with it. In my household it is just like any other day. And the reason is quite simple: I do not believe that December 25 is the birthday of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. In fact, what my research has shown is that, just like Easter before it, Christmas is rooted in hideous idolatrous observances and, in fact, predates the coming of Christ to this world in human form.
One of the vehement opposers of Pastor Kumuyi’s statement (as contained in the same ‘PUNCH’ report) is the Director of Social Communications, Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, Monsignor Gabriel Osu.
Hear him: “I don’t know what he means by saying the practice of celebrating Christmas is wrong. Is he saying that Christ wasn’t born? That he didn’t come to die for us? Does he not celebrate his own birthday …The celebration of Christmas didn’t just start today; it is too public an event for anyone to say that they don’t know what it is about… Christ came to redeem us from our lost state; this was actualised through his coming, his birth; that is why we celebrate Christmas… Kumuyi is just saying what he feels; he is not making any doctrinal statement.”
Quite a passionate reply, one would say. However, as a Roman Catholic cleric, Monsignor Osu may wish to look at the 1911 edition of the ‘Catholic Encyclopaedia’ which states that “Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the church … the first evidence of the feast is from Egypt.”
No doubt, what we today know as Christmas is one of the prominent, irremediably polluted children that emerged from the very ungodly marriage between a distorted and depreciated form of Christianity and (Roman) paganism which crept into the Church many years after the death of the Apostles of Christ and the genuine Christians that took over from them.
Although the pagan worship of the SUN god had gained prominence in several parts of the world long before the birth of Christ, and had permeated and gained wide acceptance in imperial Rome, it was Emperor Constantine’s Edict in 321 AD which ordered the unification of the mostly apostate Christians and the pagans of that period in the clearly abominable observance of the “the venerable day of the Sun” that increased the influence of Christmas celebration in the Roman church. What has, however, become clear, judging from historical accounts is that Emperor Constantine may not have truly become a Christian.
My attention was recently called to an article which rehearsed what many of us already know, namely, that “25th December was celebrated in ancient days as the birthday of the unconquerable SUN god, (variously known as Tammuz, Mithra, Saturn, Adonis or BAAL) centuries before Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem…[but] in order to win Gentile converts…the Roman Church, centuries after the Apostolic era, adopted this ancient winter festival of the SUN god and renamed it Christmas.”
And According to Alexander Hyslop, in his book, ‘The Two Babylons’ (p.91), “…within the Christian Church no such festival as Christmas was ever heard of till the third century, and that not till the fourth century was far advanced did it gain much observance.”
Indeed, all those who celebrate Christmas are unwittingly honouring and worshipping the devil in whose honour it had always been observed, instead of Christ, the Saviour.
The SUN god was known and worshipped in ancient Babylon as the son of the “Queen of Heaven.” That title should be familiar to Bible scholars who are aware that God had clearly warned the backslidden Israelites of Prophet Jeremiah’s time to beware and never worship this “queen of heaven” or they would face His wrath. And when the Israelites of that time insisted that they would go ahead to worship the queen of heaven despite God’s injunction, He pronounced a severe punishment against them. (See Jeremiah 44: 17-27).
This queen of heaven, a terrible demon and enemy of God, had always sought to get the world to worship her instead of God. She had appeared under several names in several places long before Christ was born in the flesh. In Acts of Apostles, for instance, we saw her as Diana of Ephesus, which was always identified with the Greek Artemis. As little children attending Catechism and Block Rosary meetings, we were told a very beautiful story of how the “queen of heaven” had appeared to some little children in Fatima in 1917.
To be fair to this spirit, and according to the popular Fatima apparition story, which became the subject of a very pleasant Igbo religious song, she had introduced herself truly as the “queen of heaven.” I think it was some misguided and overzealous fellows that declared her to be Mary, the mother of Jesus! And since then, in other apparitions in several other places, she has been trying to act like she is Mary, thereby drawing more worshippers. You see, humans can at times teach spirits wisdom!
Michael Harrison, in his book, ‘The Story Of Christmas,’ reports that in “in a famous letter to Augustine, Pope Gregory directed [him] to accommodate the ceremonies of the Christian worship as much as to those of the heathen, that the people might not be startled at the change, and in particular, the Pope advised Augustine to allow coverts to kill and eat at the Christmas festival a great number of oxen to the glory of God, as they had formerly done to the Devil!” Indeed, this papal directive to marry pagan practices with Christian worship (at a period of overwhelming compromise) was a very strong pollutant, the fruits of which the unwary have embraced today to the damnation of their souls.
But nobody would be excused because the Bible is there as the most authoritative guide to salvation and worship of God. Moreover, history books are replete with accounts that the same excessive revelling and drunkenness that marked the feast of the SUN god on December 25 long before Christ was born in Bethlehem are exactly the same unedifying preoccupations that dominate the celebration of Christmas today. Certainly, there is no way Christ can be associated with it.
I really enjoyed reading Barbara Aho’s article, “Cosmic Christmas: Rebirth of the Sun God”. Please, permit to quote an interesting extract from it. “In the fourth century,” she writes, “the Emperor Constantine designated December 25, the birthday of the Roman Sun-god Mithra, as the birthday of Jesus Christ, thereby placing the true Savior among the pantheon of Roman gods. Constantine succeeded in drawing Christians into the pagan celebrations of Rome, which procured the religious unity needed for the success of the Holy Roman Empire. The empire dominated the world for 1,200 years until the 16th century, when the Protestant Reformers led 2/3 of Europe to break away with the Roman Catholic Church and discontinued the celebration of Christmas by reason of its pagan character. The Puritans who controlled the English Parliament in 1644 declared that no observation of Christmas was permitted, calling it ‘The Profane Man’s Ranting Day.’”
Also, the famous English preacher, C.H. Spurgeon, had this to say as recently as 1871: “We have no superstitious regard for times and seasons. Certainly, we do not believe in the present ecclesiastical arrangement called Christmas.”
On December 23, 1983, ‘USA Today’ newspaper reported that “A broad element of English Christianity still considered Christmas celebration a pagan blasphemy. The Puritans, Baptists, Quakers, Presbyterians, Calvinists and other denominations brought this opposition to early New England and strong opposition to the holiday lasted in America until the middle of the 18th century.”
Indeed, it was when depreciation and compromise began to set in that people whose forbears had opposed this heathen feast began to return to it. But it was not only Christmas that the depreciation brought. Of recent, for instance, some pastors of some so-called Bible-believing Churches have begun to don priestly robes, complete with skullcaps and the mitre! Just for them to be addressed as Bishops! What a horrible period of great apostasy! (Matthew 24:12).
Truth is: Christmas has no Scriptural backing. The Apostles did not observe it. It is a product of a most hideous compromise. Indeed, no matter the good intentions that led to this unholy marriage that produced Christmas, it is still a heathen feast, in honour of the devil. When Aaron made the golden calf for the Israelites at Mount Sinai, he proclaimed the celebration that attended its inauguration the “feast of the Lord.” (Exodus 32:5). Yet, this did not prevent the wrath of God from falling upon them.
Again, the name Jeroboam, the son of the Nebat, is always accompanied each time it is mentioned in the Bible with the statement, “the man who made Israel to sin.” The Bible says he had “ordained a feast in the eight month… like unto the feast in Judah…” (I Kings 12: 32), because he wanted to prevent the Israelites from rebelling against his kingship. An entry in the famous Matthew Henry’s Commentary states: “Though it is probable [Jeroboam] meant this worship for Jehovah the God of Israel, it was directly contrary to the Divine majesty, to be thus represented.” So, no matter how anyone tries to rename or whitewash a devilish festival, it would still be in honour of the devil.
A Scottish writer was, therefore very right when he said: “Christmas is still a pagan festival through and through. Its change of name from Saturnalia, the birthday of the Sun god, to Christ’s Mass [Christmas] has not altered its true character one iota: and the evil spirit behind its celebrations still produces the deception, debt, drunkenness, misrule and licentiousness that characterized the pagan revelries of bygone days.” Indeed, all other accompaniments like Christmas tree, Christmas log, exchange of gifts, etc., are direct carry-overs from the celebration of the birthday of the Sun-god as history reports it.
A historical record observed that “the point of departure for every major apostasy in Israel and Christendom involved the commingling of worship of the true God with worship of the Sun-god.” In fact, Aaron’s golden calf and King Jeroboam’s pagan worship have all been proved to be in honour of the Sun-god. Just as Christmas is! And God’s attitude towards them can only be the same.
But the question is: do we even need to commemorate the birth of the Saviour to obtain salvation? The answer is obvious, and it is NO! Again, could Christ have been born on December 25? Well, think about it: there was just no way those shepherds the angels met on the day Jesus was born could have been out “in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night” (Luke 2:8) in the killing cold at the peak of winter, with the snow probably more than twelve inches above the ground. That would have been suicidal.