Was the event we now call Christmas originally a "pagan holiday"? Does that mean the church should discard it, along with its lights, tinsel, and increasing commercialism?
Only if we are prepared to abandon many other holidays and common Christian practices that the early church co-opted for its own purpose of glorifying Christ. December 25, which Christians now herald as Jesus' birthday, was actually the date on which the Romans celebrated the birth of the sun god.
Saturnalia Saturnalia was the feast dedicated to the Roman god Saturn. C., this feast was originally celebrated on December 17.
Eventually the feast was extended to last an entire week, ending on December 23.
If not, then where did they come to be so universally accepted and celebrated today? 31, when the Church of God first came into being, it “continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine [teaching] and fellowship” (Acts ). )—that includes keeping God’s holy days and practicing the traditions that accompany them.
Traditional Christianity is divided into varying denominations, sects and churches around the world, all teaching and believing differing doctrines. The first-century Christians “believed...together” (vs. Regarding Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread, the apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians—who were primarily Gentiles, not Jews—that “Christ our is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth” (I Cor. Concerning the Sabbath, Paul wrote, “There remains therefore a rest to the people of God” (Heb. The Greek word used for “rest” is —meaning “a Sabbath-rest” or more properly “a keeping of the Sabbath.” Following His example, the Church that Christ built observed the same Sabbath, holy days, laws and traditions that the Jews kept.
Most assume that these early Christians worshipped on Sunday and kept Christmas, Lent, Easter and other holidays observed by professing Christians today.I love Yule, partly because it is the most important holy tide in the Saxon sacral calendar, but also for the same reason that many non-Germanic Pagans love it.Wiccans have no reason to be exceptionally excited about the winter solstice, as it is a “minor sabbat” secondary to the big holidays like Beltane and Samhain.The supposed connection to Christmas is based on the proximity of the two festivals to each other. In his article It has been suggested that Christians in the 4th Century assigned December 25th as Christ's birthday (and hence Christmas) because pagans already observed this day as a holiday.In this way the problem of eliminating an already popular holiday would be sidestepped, thus making the Christianizing of the population easier. According to inscriptions on candle votives and other ancient works of art, there is a link between Mithras and Sol Invictus.Sol Invictus and Mithras The feast of Sol Invictus was the attempt by the Roman emperor Aurelian to reform the cult of Sol, the Roman sun god, and and reintroduce it to his people, inaugurating Sol's temple and holding games for the first time in A. These connections are difficult to understand given our limited knowledge of the Mithraic belief system, but they are important because they help to explain why skeptics claim the birthday of Mithras was celebrated on December 25.