Merry Christmas to all
Christmas is here again and the faithful with steadfast fidelity or people who get an opportunity to avail the luxury of long holidays have already become part of the usual hustle and bustle. Christmas decorations saved in the boxes put away in garages or attics give the families a reason to be spiritually satisfied and alleviated or people enjoying holidays get their money´s worth. Shop windows, shopping malls and even privately owned houses festooned with Christmas decorations give an aura of festivities, boisterous merriment and joyfulness.
The "War on Christmas" terminology is used to define attacks on Christianity mainly by atheist cults those sprang up during the era of Revolutionary France, the Puritans law of 17th century or the anti-clerical government policies of 20th century Soviet Union. Nazi Germany, as argued, saw Christianity as an enemy and perceived it a threat to absolute power of the state. The greetings Merry Christmas in a planned strategy purposefully converted to Season´s Greetings benefits dominant multi-billion businesses in financial gains compared to forces with the intent to oppose the belief in Christianity.
The Churches though declared listed properties, mainly in the western countries, are sold and converted into warehouses or bought by people professing other faiths as perhaps the outstanding technological feats and affluence around diminishes the required fulfilment of daily visible needs through revered invisible sources. The past or post Biblical history replete with stories about the rise and fall of societies with an end remindful of total annihilation is brushed aside as hearsay. However, in the recent times the number of resurging faithful is gradually going up.
Jesus Christ conveying a simple message to believe Father in Heaven and be good human beings was misunderstood even by His close associates and disciples. Soon after His crucifixion Jesus in the upper room tried to convince His disciples showing them His hands and side (John: 19) that He was the same person they believed in and to prove the fact asked for broiled fish & honeycomb. After He ate, Jesus said look I am the Jesus in flesh and blood and not a ghost as ghosts do not require to eat. The disciples who had watched Him crucified believing He was dead, were still in two minds and refused to believe He was alive.
Santa Claus a money spinning machine for the multi-billion businesses all over the world has its history and, as believed by many, is not connected with Jesus Christ in any manner whatsoever. Millions of children lured to believe that Santa comes during the night travelling in a chariot to bring toys and gifts for all children makes it more of a fun game rather than a religious ceremony. The legend of Santa Claus also referred to as Saint Nicholas revolves round a story that Nicholas was admired for his piety, benevolence and kindness. He spent all his inherited wealth for poor and sick and the best known story is that he saved three poor sisters from being sold into slavery because their father could not afford to pay the dowry to get them married.
Turkey, special dish a must for the day to celebrate Christmas is mentioned nowhere in the Bible but millions of them slaughtered every year makes it a bonanza for the business houses. FELIPE ARAUJO in the Sunday Express giving historical account for the use of Turkey says "Turkeys were introduced in Britain more than 500 years ago by Yorkshireman William Strickland, who acquired six birds from American Indian traders on his travels. Before that, people's meat of choice for Christmas was geese, boars’ head and even peacocks. But from the moment turkeys arrived in this country, farmers realised that the animals they were killing for their Christmas feasts could be better used to provide other foods. So, it has been left to the turkey to keep our stomachs full on Christmas Day - and many days after that".
Christmas tree, another ritual attached to Christianity has a story explained by Edwin and Jennifer Woodruff Tait in the following words "The most likely theory is that Christmas trees started with medieval plays. Dramas depicting biblical themes began as part of the church’s worship, but by the late middle Ages, they had become rowdy, imaginative performances. The plays celebrating the Nativity were linked to the story of creation—in part because Christmas Eve was also considered the feast day of Adam and Eve".
Three Wise Men, likewise, are not mentioned in the Bible or it does not mention the number of wise men who visited Jesus. But the traditional names of these learned wise men are mentioned as Gaspar, Balthasar and Melchior. As is said, the men who came to seek Christ child were not idolaters but upright men of integrity. The bibleinfo.com mentions that the tradition that there were three wise men arose from the fact that the Bible mentions three gifts gold, frankincense and myrrh according to Matthew 2:11. However, the Bible doesn´t say how many wise men made the journey to see the baby Jesus. The unfounded idea that they were also kings came from the imagery of Isaiah 60:3.
Islamic perspective of Jesus Christ considers Him as one of the greatest God´s messengers to mankind. The Quran testifies His virgin birth and describes the birth of Jesus as follows:
(Remember) when the angels said, "O Mary, God gives you good news of a word from Him (God), whose name is the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, revered in this world and the Hereafter. He will speak to the people from his cradle and as a man, and he is of the righteous." She said, "My Lord, how can I have a child when no mortal has touched me?" He said, "So (it will be). God creates what He wills. If He decrees a thing, He says to it only, "Be!" and it is". (Quran, 3:45-47)
Jesus was born miraculously by the command of God, the same command that had brought Adam into being with neither a father nor a mother. God has said: The case of Jesus with God is like the case of Adam. (Quran, 3:59) Neither Muhammad nor Jesus came to change the basic doctrine of the belief in one God, brought by earlier prophets, but rather to confirm and renew it.
Jesus Christ in his message to people said "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfil them". (Matthew 5:17) "By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgement is just, for I seek not to please myself but Him (God) who sent me. (John 5:30)" it is handsome before God Almighty for believing men and women to believe in Jesus Christ and spread the true message to seek His Father´s mercy. The triumph of good over the evil will, as promised, spiritually fortify the faithful to exchange greetings and celebrate birth of Jesus Christ.