Monday, December 14, 2009

Speaking Of "Christmas Lies"

John Loftus has linked to a highly misleading article about Christmas from a Jewish web site. The author, Lawrence Kelemen, writes:

Nicholas was among the most senior bishops who convened the Council of Nicaea in 325 CE and created the New Testament. The text they produced portrayed Jews as “the children of the devil” who sentenced Jesus to death....

Christmas celebrates the birth of the Christian god who came to rescue mankind from the “curse of the Torah.” It is a 24-hour declaration that Judaism is no longer valid.

Christmas is a lie. There is no Christian church with a tradition that Jesus was really born on December 25th....

Many who are excitedly preparing for their Christmas celebrations would prefer not knowing about the holiday’s real significance. If they do know the history, they often object that their celebration has nothing to do with the holiday’s monstrous history and meaning. “We are just having fun.”

Imagine that between 1933-45, the Nazi regime celebrated Adolf Hitler’s birthday – April 20 – as a holiday. Imagine that they named the day, “Hitlerday,” and observed the day with feasting, drunkenness, gift-giving, and various pagan practices. Imagine that on that day, Jews were historically subject to perverse tortures and abuse, and that this continued for centuries.

The article covers many periods of history, and I don't know much about some of the subjects discussed. But where the article touches on subjects I'm more familiar with, I can tell that much of what it claims is false or misleading. The Council of Nicaea didn't rule on the canon. John 8:44 only refers to some Jews, not Jews in general, so the implication that it's anti-Jewish in some wrong sense is dubious. The New Testament's references to the Jewish law as a "curse" aren't meant to condemn the law in its entirety or its original intent, but rather are meant to highlight how the law condemns us as sinners. Despite what Kelemen tells us, there are early Christian traditions involving Jesus' birth on December 25. The article says nothing about Julius Africanus, early Christian belief that Jesus was both conceived and crucified on March 25 (making December 25 the birthdate), etc. Kelemen repeatedly refers to the raping, murdering, etc. of Jews in association with Christmas, but the origins of the holiday and the vast majority of its celebrations are far removed from such behavior. The sort of reasoning he applies to Christmas could also be applied to the pagan associations of our system of government, our language, our economic system, etc., including many such things that Jewish people utilize.

The article is really bad. Why does John Loftus link to it in such an unqualified way?

1 comment:

  1. The article is really bad. Why does John Loftus link to it in such an unqualified way?

    Dunno...but I do know that every time I walk into B&N...I'll make a quick jaunt to the philosophy section to find John's most recent book sitting on the shelf. The same book has been sitting there for about a year now. It looks so lonely..."won't somebody take me home?"

    Maybe this Christmas lil Loftus...maybe this Christmas.