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Offline bitnet  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, December 26, 2007 12:54:52 AM(UTC)
Joined: 7/3/2007(UTC)
Posts: 1,120

Sigh! It's that time of the year again when the mouth suddenly whistles "Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer" seemingly on its own and the brain says, "Shut up! You know you don't really celebrate this event."

It's the time when people around you wish you "Merry Christmas!" and all you can do is say, "Happy holidays and Happy New Year," or "Thanks, but I'm not celebrating this year (or the next or ever but I can't tell you that right now)," or "Huh? Already?" pretending that you are unaware of the plastic pine trees and faux snow (in Malaysia) and the music blaring out in all the malls or the flashy, colourful advertisements in the newspapers and TV or the noises on the radio.

It's the time when you ask Yahweh for forgiveness for having "got into the mood" unexpectedly as you really wanted to be sober and sombre and unparticipating but got "dragged" into a family dinner or lunch as it was a happy occasion to be with the family. Mind you, it was nothing boisterous and only one glass of red wine and it is OK as our Saviour did drink wine, right? And it was not a toast to Santa (however you spell that out!) and you did not eat any oink or shellfish that was served, OK?

Christmas seems to be the season of greed, coercion, habit, justification, repentance, etc. A seemingly everlasting roller-coaster ride of emotions and wandering thoughts amidst the commercialised calls for conspicuous consumption. Even Believers wonder why they do the things they do (Hey! It was on sale!) and whether it can be excused as nothing evil was intended but a simple desire of family unity amidst festivities, albeit pagan in origin. No excesses, just a simple dinner with family but still doubts creep in. Values are questioned. No wonder some people decide to "end it all" during this season!

Well, I started telling some friends that I don't celebrate Christmas, and did not even reply the SMSes that I received (probably be relegated to the bottom of the phone SIM card next year under "Useless"). Even told my brother not to bother with presents (still got a nice calendar and organic hamper, though).

But seriously, being Yahudim is a challenge and this is the second most challenging time of the year, the other when you have to excuse yourself for not celebrating with bunnies and coloured chocolate eggs. You stand out like a sore thumb not going to a morning mass or service. A party pooper. An Unbeliever! An ingrate who does not acknowledge The Sacrifice or even return felicitations! Not partying is one thing, but not respecting The Sacrifice? That's too much!

How does one behave during these periods? Is it fair to even attend a simple family dinner or lunch? I felt slightly guilty at first but I got over it when I realised my younger brother did not even put up a tree this year and he did not serve any pork or crustaceans. Perhaps it is because he is in the organic food business and he know better, but I sense that he knows that there are changes in our ways and that he may want to know more as time goes by. So I felt OK, and I was not even asked if I attended the Christmas mass.

We chatted with some close friends at dinner and I shared a little about what I read from Yada and current events, and raised some awareness about the near future. No arguments, no confrontation, just talk among friends. I did not even try to tell them about the truth of the festival... I think there will be time soon enough. There's plenty of info on the Net and YouTube in particular has several videos; from the Christian perspective, the Islamic perspective (some of them know!), and the historical perspective. Just do a Google search and the responses will astound you! So I'll take the easy way out and email the links.

What is more important is how do we respond to these festivals. Scripture has clear statements and it is difficult to move away without offending people around you, but we must do it slowly and gently and start weaning off these festivals or get caught in the end. I think that Yahweh is giving us time now to do the Work... perhaps not in the future when the events and accounting will be rather hurried.

So it's that time of the year again, and it will likely repeat itself at least for the next quarter of a century. Perhaps by then we should truly be without guilt or doubt and would have shared enough over friendly dinners about the true nature of our Creator and the real Feasts. I know that my wife and I would be celebrating the Feasts of Yahweh next year, alone if need be but preferably with brethren. Shalom!
The reverence of Yahweh is the beginning of Wisdom.
Offline Theophilus  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, December 26, 2007 3:09:18 AM(UTC)
Joined: 7/5/2007(UTC)
Posts: 527

Thanks: 3 times
Hello Bitnet, I empathize with what you've described and struggle myself as to what is appropriate, especially this season. I too have ceased many aspects of the season. I put up no tree or other traditions of the past. I did have a notion of breaking out the nativity cresh as part of Tabernacles, which YY indicates as the most likely day for the birth of Yahushua.

I also understand the the Paganish aspects of winter solstice holidays and the Yule time birth or re-birth of mother earth's season dependent second generation deity during the season. What I've been intrigued by as I indicated in the Star of Bethlehem thread is the indication that the brightest "star" in the sky appeared to stand still over Bethlem as observed from Jerusalem occured on the night of what on our calender's would have been December 24th-25th 2 BCE. That this can be verified by astronomical software and that this yeilds a similar sign in the heavens for the time of Messiah's sacrafice on the death stake by Golgotha at 3PM local time on Friday April 3rd or Nisan 14th 33 CE. My question now is what is the signifigence if any of observing the anniversary of the night of the "star" of Bethlehem "rested" and the wisemen/magi from the east arrived to honor Yisrael's foretold redeemer with gifts?
Offline CK  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, December 26, 2007 3:09:19 PM(UTC)
Joined: 9/10/2007(UTC)
Posts: 128
Location: Washington State

Bitnet: Yahuweh willing, next year at this time we will experience more brothers and sisters waking up!

Theophilus: Interesting info on the star. I don't really put much credance in observing it as an anniversary to be celibrated. I do look forward to learning more about how to observe Yah's yearly feasts. I've studied the Scriptures on these subjects, but modern day times make some things difficult. I really haven't come across how the various people on this forum observe the feasts. I've visited some Jewish sites, but again I really don't have a clear picture on how I should handle it. Would love to hear how you or any one else on this form observe the feasts of Yahuweh.

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