The Truth re Star of Bethlehem

Many say this sign was given by God as a guide for the visiting wise men{astrologers}. Many passages in the Old Testament show God to be against astrology, so why would He want pagans to come see His Son? The truth is that King Herod wanted them to, in order they might return with His whereabouts that he might kill Him. That “star” was put there by the devil, he also wanted Jesus dead. The whole idea of celebrating Christmas is abomination to God. If He wanted us to celebrate His Sons’ birth, He would have given us the date of His birth and would have commanded this to be celebrated. The already apostate “church” in the fourth cent. AD assigned His birthday to that of the Roman sun god -“dies natalis solis invictus”. God does not approve of birthday celebrations, they are rooted in pagan religions.

Read much Jack Chick lately?

While this Forum is the sole location where witnessing is tolerated, I should warn you that it is not tolerated well. If you are going to post provocative stuff, please be sure to be able to substantiate your claims.

In your whole post, the only thing that comes close to an accurate statement is that Christianity co-opted and older pagan feast on which to artificially settle the feast of Christmas.

As to your little tirade about the star of Bethlehem, I’m afraid you’ll have to go do battle with Christian Scripture. (Maybe you could petition the Gospel writer Luke to come back and correct his error?)

Fact is, a lot of the authors of the Gospels were not religious scholars, that’s why there are so many conflicts between the New and the Old Testament.

Er, Tom? That would be the Gospel writer Matthew:

So everything not required is prohibited? The sheer conceit of people who purport to know the mind of God never ceases to amaze me.

Oh, and tom–tom the Original Poster, I mean, not Tom the Smart Poster–you might want to read this defense of Christmas, written by a good, God-fearing Christian. I’m sure they’d love to have a good long chat with you over at that site, since if you don’t join their Church, you’re going to go to hell.

Did God tell you this personally??

Wouldn’t it have been easier just to tell them where he was? He goes to all the trouble of postioning a star, and he can’t just draw a map? Sheesh.

I suppose it was the devil who put the sun and stars in the sky in Genesis too. After all, didn’t people start to worship the sun? Therefore whoever made the sun made an idol. God wouldn’t make an idol, would he?

I suspect we’re dealing with a Jehovah’s Witless, a variant subspecies of Jehovas Witness (the Witlesses are dumber and more obnoxious). The species doesn’t like Christmas or birthdays.


But I thought GODwanted Jesus dead, since only by giving his only begotten son as sacrifice would God be allowed to forgive us. Or are you saying it all comes down to a matter of timing? And if Jesus, who was God, had gotten killed early on thanks to the intervention of the Devil, wouldn’t God just cuss about it and knock up some other Jewish chick and try again?

[Moonlighting] I’m so confused! [/moonlighting]

Umm, maybe because He loves ALL men, regardless of their religous affiliation, and wants them to come to the knowledge of the truth?

[valley girl]Like, fer shure,duh![valley girl]

Okay, if you wanna play tritheism, you can suggest that God (i.e. YHWH of the OT) wants to kill Jesus off as a sacrifice to Himself, but that is not what the Bible testifies to. According to it, Jesus is the Word of God, the activating force that started the universe, come into the world as a human being, and effectively, on the Christian paradigm, God is sacrificing Himself to save people. To suggest that “God wanted Jesus to die” would mean He was suicidal – and while a strict reading of Scripture suggests He had some severe psychological problems (those of us who believe in Him and don’t try to write off this sort of thing tend to believe it was the misperception of the writers, not God Himself, with the psychopathology), nothing would indicate that He was suicidally depressed. Although I suppose that knowing You will be denied by even Your chosen, closest followers might do that to You.

Anyway, here are some “star” explanations:
[li]Miraculous phenomenon. No explanation, just a straight reading of the text as, uh, Gospel truth.[/li][li]Hovering meteor or other atmospheric phenomenon. Doesn’t seem likely. Nearly as improbable physically as the previous.[/li][li]Supernova. Fine – except that there doesn’t seem to have been one at that time, and it would not fit the phenomena Matthew describes.[/li][li]Astrological conjunction. This makes some more sense. There was a conjunction of two or three planets in Pisces at the time. The Magi, the Wise Men of Scripture, were noted for astrological interpretation, and Pisces was the sign corresponding to the Palestine area. I do not recall which planets were involved, but one was Jupiter, the symbol of rule, suggesting that a King of the Jewish people was to have some major life phenomenon happen to him. What says it’s a birth is something I don’t recall. The directional stuff would be metaphorical for specific interpretation pinning down who and where, given all this, and the idea that the heir of David’s line would be born in Bethlehem would make much sense to Jewish thought of the time.[/li]
You also have to recall that the prohibition against occult and mystical foofaraw in strict Judaeo-Christian morality is not a broad-based “It’s inherently wrong” but is founded on the idea that it’s trusting in something supernatural other than God, to whom one’s allegiance is supposed to be total. There are incidents in the OT where occult stuff are used in a pro-God way, with no evident condemnation. For example, the “urim and thummim” material seems to have been the casting of lots to determine God’s will, the idea being that He would influence the otherwise random fall of the lots. (Note here that LDS doctrine understands the urim and thummim in a substantially different context, not germane to this post.) Seances are “agin’ God’s will” – except that King Saul wants to get the advice of Samuel the Judge and Prophet, who happens to have passed on to his reward by then, and so recruits a medium to call up Samuel’s ghost – who tells Saul he is doomed for having failed to follow God’s will, although the condemnation seems to have been focused on his failure to rule in the way God intended, not for having conducted a seance. Too, the Mazdaist view of a single good god with an evil entity in opposition strongly flavored Judaism at the time of the Exile and shortly thereafter, the Jewish leadership being quartered in Babylonia and surrounding areas conquered by the early Achaemenid kings who followed Mazdaism. Jewish understanding of the Satan had him as “God’s prosecuting attorney” with a bit of entrapment until Mazdaistic thought about Ahriman, the “evil god” in opposition to Ahura Mazda, painted him as more an independent rebel in opposition to God. In essence, the Jewish leaders saw the Mazdaists as misled worshippers of the one true God under erroneous doctrine, not as following false gods. For this reason, the one man other than the Davidic monarchy and Jesus who is called God’s Anointed (mashiach -> Messiah -> Christ) in the Bible is Cyrus, the first conquering king of the Persian Empire.

Well, there weren’t any Christians around at the time…

EEeeeuuuuwww! In the same spirit, let me disagree: there was at least one Baptist around: John the. :smiley:

That is actually what the Bible implies. But as for having a Holy Day for Jesus’s birth, it can’t be a big deal.

(Unless, by extension, that makes other days less holy… but if you want all your days to be holy, skipper, I can certaintly point you in the right direction :wink: )

another little xmas message

Here’s what doesn’t make sense to me. The wise men come to Herod, and say, “See that star? It tells us a new king was born. Have you seen him?” Herod says, “Hold on, I’ll check.” He checks and people tell him “Well, there’s a prophecy that the kid will be born in Bethlehem” He tells them this, and then says "Oh, BTW, when you find him, come back and tell me, so that I can go pay him homage too <wink>, which of course, they don’t do, messing up his plans. Why didn’t Herod just say, “Oh, let me give you a few soldiers as an escort… <psst, guys…when you find the kid, kill him> because the roads aren’t safe this time of year.”

Herod was a collaborator with the Romans. I’m not sure if he had personal soldiers under his command at this time. But even if he did, I think foreigners with military from the local despot in tow would have raised suspiscion in the little town of Bethelem. In any case, Herod had no reason to supect that the Magi would be warned in a dream not to report back to him and figured he had plenty of time. Besides, he may have thought the whole thing rubbish, and didn’t want to make the effort until he knew more.

Well, Herod the Great was an independent king, with the title “Friend and Ally of the Roman People”, so he would have had his own army. It’s possible he figured “Well, no big deal”, but if that’s the case, he REALLY overreacted when they didn’t come back, according to the Christian bible. Admittedly, Herod at the end of his life wasn’t the sanest he had ever been, but still…so, I guess the question is, what would you have done if you were him? I still say I would have sent a few soldiers along.

“Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.”

Slight hijack: Where exactly was the star? If the Bible says the wisemen saw the star IN the east does that mean it was actually in the eastern sky or does it mean they viewed it in the western sky FROM the east? It seems to me that if they were traveling west, the star would be in the western sky? Which is correct?