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Written by Ken Murray
After I recently wrote about the falsity of Christmas, an old past College friend of mine responded and wrote to me: “God loves pagan festivals! His love excludes no one, nor their festivals.”
But is that true that God loves paganism? What would Moses say is God’s reply to this old friend of mine?
Deuteronomy 12:30-31: "Take heed to yourself that you be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before you; and that you inquire not after their gods saying 'How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise.' You shall not do so unto the Eternal your God: for every abomination to the Eternal, which He hates, have they done to their gods ...."
What would Ezekiel say is God’s reply to this man:
Ezekiel 11:12: "And you shall know that I am the Lord: for you have not walked in my statutes, neither executed my judgments, but have done after the manners of the heathen that are round about you."
Here is what Jeremiah would say God’s reply is to this man:
Jeremiah 10:2: “Thus says 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. And Jeremiah 10:3: For the customs of the people are vain...”
How about what Isaiah? What would He say is God’s reply to this man:
Isaiah 55:7-9: “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
When it comes to the choice to keep the ways of this world, such as Christmas and New Year’s Celebrations or the truthful Way of God in the right spirit, we need to remind ourselves of these verses in Deuteronomy, Ezekiel, Jeremiah and Isaiah.
The Book of Proverbs adds a message to which we must give careful consideration.
Proverbs 14:12; 16:25: “There is a way which seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”
So, we really can’t say "it doesn't matter." It does matter to God whether we compromise and adopt the customs of the world about us. Excessive alcohol and drug use, as well as promiscuous behaviour, has become common at New Year's Eve events. Today, New Year's Eve has become a time for people to wallow in excesses of liquor and drugs and illicit sex. The modern attitude, just like the ancient Romans, seems to be, "have a wild time on New Year's Eve, and turn over a new leaf on New Year's Day."
Many will acknowledge, when forced to, the pagan origin of the days mainstream Christianity and the world celebrate such as Christmas and the welcoming in of the New Year. Yet, sadly, they stubbornly refuse to stop observing them! They seemingly just do not care, but foolishly follow the crowd.
There is a general “don’t care” attitude in the world today, along with a total disrespect for God and God’s instructions of how we should live our lives wisely.
Most people seem to have foolishly and ignorantly convinced themselves that God is out of the picture for good. They falsely believe that God is not concerned with their modern reveling, drunken parties, and fornication. New Year's resolutions are often simply empty and meaningless, usually trifling matters of jest. So few people make any lasting change!
It really does matter to God whether we compromise and adopt the customs of the world about us. It is time that we learn to love and respect God and follow His instructions of how we should live our lives wisely.
Humanity has been deprived of the keys that unlock a comprehensive understanding of God's plan and purpose for humankind. God reveals His splendid plan in the prophecies and teachings of the Scriptures. In this lesson you will see how God has provided us with the keys to unlock His plan through His sacred festivals.
Is it possible to know what the future holds for us? The Creator of mankind does have a plan for us, and He reveals it to us through an annual cycle of festivals described in the Scriptures. It is an astounding plan offering an incredible future to every man, woman, and child who has ever lived. This booklet will help you understand the incredible truth about what lies ahead for all humanity.
It’s obvious that our world is plagued with serious problems. Look around at the devastating wars, civil unrest, violent crime, rampant theft, corrupt governments, grinding poverty, hunger, spreading substance abuse, broken homes and families, natural disasters, failing educational systems and much more. These things aren’t new; they’re the sad legacy of human history. Is there any hope that these problems will ever be solved? Believe it or not, there is indeed great hope, and it’s found in the pages of your Bible. It’s called the gospel, a word that means “good news.” And it truly is good news, the message of Jesus Christ’s coming reign over the earth and God’s divine solution to our problems! Learn much more about this wonderful hope and news in the pages of this issue of Beyond Today. Download this issue in PDF. Individual articles will be posted in the upcoming days.