The Bible proclaims the Begetting and the Birth
History confirms the Begetting and the Birth
Truth preserves the Begetting and the Birth
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By examining the prepared >DATES< of Gentile & Jewish, it is of biblical and historical truth that the 25th of December (5 B.C.) is in all honesty the date of the Begetting of our Lord Jesus Christ and that the 29th day of September (4 B.C.) is the true "Birthday" of our Lord Jesus Christ. The 25th of December was the day in which He was begotten of the Holy Ghost (see Matt.1:18,20) and His Birth took place the following year on September 29th making beautifully clear the meaning of John 1:14 "The Word became flesh" (Matt. 1:18,20) on 1st Tebeth or December 25(5 B.C.) - the "Feast of the Dedication (1)"John 10:22/Ezra 6:16, and dwelt (tabernacled) among us on the 15th of Ethanim or September 29th (4 B.C.)
(1) - The Feast of Dedication was celebrated on the 25th of the month of Chislev (December) and is an 8-day feast. Also this Dedication is known as the "Feast of Lights",
it is marked by the lighting of 8 candles, one on each day of the Feast. The celebration features the singing of the Hallel Psalms (113 to 118 inclusive) and is somewhat similar to the Feast of Booths. The day celebrated as the "Dedication" was a Holy Sabbath Day (December 25th, 5 B.C.). Notice verse 24 from Psalm 118.
The 15th of Ethanim (or Tisri) was the first day of the "Feast of Tabernacles". The circumcision therefore took place on the eighth day of the feast=22nd Ethanim=October 6-7(Lev. 23:33-43). So that these two divine events fall into their proper place and order, and the real reason is made clear why the 25th of December is associated with our Lord, and was set apart by the Apostolic Church to commemorate the greatest event ever of the "Word becoming flesh" - and not as we have for so long been led to suppose, the commemoration of a pagan festival.
If studied, the > DATES< bring to light the perfectness of human creation in which God is the author and the finisher. For example; we know that God is perfect, His creation, His works, His thoughts, etc.. Therefore, when God chose to "tabernacle" among us, He performed the begetting and the nativity in a perfect manner. The time period of human gestation is 40 weeks (280 days), perfect and exact. God was conceived in Mary on the 25th of December and exactly 40 weeks (280 days) later was born of Mary (naturally). In creating man God also created the proper and perfect gestation period (compare Jewish and Gentile gestation periods within the date-chart). God came not only for the Jew, but also the Gentile! In the case of John the Baptist, he was a day or two either way from perfect gestation. For right information concerning the begetting and birth of John (Baptist), one should study the course of Abia (see Luke 1:5) and correct dating.
There is a very strong argument in favour of the view I am sharing due to the fact that the date of "the Festival of Michael and All angels" has been from very early times the 29th day of September, on Gentile (Western) reckoning. But "the Church" even then had lost sight of the reason why this date rather than any other in the Calendar should be so indissolubly associated with the great Angelic Festival. Also, a reference to the date-chart makes the "original special idea" why the Festival of "Michael and All Angels" is held on September 29th abundantly clear.
Our Lord was born on that day, the first day of the "Feast of Tabernacles"(Lev. 23:39). This was on the fifteenth day of the seventh Jewish month called Tisri, or Ethanim corresponding to our September 29th (of the year 4 B.C.). Michael was the Archangel (Jude 9 and the only Angel with this title)." Let all the Angels of God worship Him (Heb. 1:6). This must include the great Archangel Michael himself.
The fact of the Birth of our Lord having been revealed to the shepherds by the Archangel Michael on the 15th of Tisri (or Ethanim), corresponding to September 29th, 4 B.C.- the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles - must have been known to believers in the Apostolic Age. But "the mystery of iniquity" which was "already working" in Paul's day (II Thess.2:7) quickly enshrouded this and the other great fact of the day of the Lord's "begetting" on the first day of the Jewish month Tebeth (corresponding to December 25th, 5 B.C.) - as well as other events connected with His sojourn on earth - resulting in a growing mist of obscurity in which they have ever since been lost!
The earliest allusion to December 25th (modern reckoning) as the date for the Nativity is found in the Stromata of Clement of Alexandria, about the beginning of the third century A.D. Christmas was a pagan festival long before the begetting and birth of our Lord. In Egypt Horus, the son of Isis (Queen of Heaven), was born about the time of the winter solstice. By the time of the early part of the fourth century, the begetting and birth of our Lord had been lost sight of. Constantine was a strong contributor to the freedom of religion and was great in the leading away from the truth of the begetting and birth of our Lord. When many of the followers of the old pagan systems, the vast majority of the empire, it must be remembered - adopted the Christian religion as a cult, which Constantine had made fashionable, and the "Church" became the Church of the Roman Empire. Many, if not all of the old pagan religions from Babylon and Egypt were adopted with their respective yearly dating. Thus, "Christmas Day", the birthday of the Egyptian Horus (Osiris), became gradually substituted for the perfect date of the "Begetting" of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!
Finally, the main arguments against the Nativity having taken place in December are mentioned here very simply:
I. - The extreme improbability, amounting almost to impossibility, that Mary, under such circumstances, could have undertaken a journey of about 70 miles (as the crow flies), through a hill district averaging some 3,000 feet above sea level, in the depth of winter:
II. - Shepherds and their flocks would not be found "abiding" in the open fields at night in December (Tebeth), for the paramount reason that there would be no pasturage at that time. It was the custom then (as now) to withdraw the flocks during the month of Oct.-Nov. (A) from the open districts and house them for the winter.
(A) -It is true that the Lebanon shepherds are in the habit of keeping their flocks alive during the winter months, by cutting down branches of trees in the forests in that district, to feed the sheep on the leaves and twigs, when in autumn the pastures are dried up, and in winter, when the snow covers the ground, but there is no evidence that the Bethlehem district was afforested in this manner.
III. - The Roman authorities in imposing such a "census taking" for the hated and unpopular "foreign" tax would not have enforced the imperial decree (Luke 2:1) at the most inconvenient and inclement season of the year, by compelling the people to enroll themselves at their respective "cities" in December. In such a case they would naturally choose the "line of least resistance", and select a time of year that would cause least friction and interference with the habits and pursuits of the Jewish people. This would be in the autumn, when the agricultural round of the year was complete, and the people generally more or less at liberty to take advantage, as we know many did, of the opportunity of "going up" to Jerusalem for the "Feast of Tabernacles", the crowning feast of the Jewish year. To take advantage of such a time would be to the Romans the simplest and most natural policy, whereas to attempt to enforce the Edict of Registration for the purposes of Imperial taxation in the depth of winter, - when traveling for such a purpose would have been deeply resented, and perhaps have brought about a revolt, - would never have been attempted by such an astute ruler as Augustus.
SUMMARY - I am by no means moving to influence a different thought or to alter such a blessed and sacred time of the year as December 25th, but though the "mystery of iniquity" worked in Paul's day it also works in our day, yet knowledge (truth) shall increase also. December 25th is not to be celebrated as the "birth" of Christ, but the "Begetting", or "Conception". The "Birthday" of our Lord Jesus Christ should (must) be recognized as taking place on September 29th (the beginning of the "Feast of Tabernacles").
Without taking away in any wise that of John 1:14, you may well read the verse..." And the Word was made flesh and "tabernacled" among us".
David B. Ronzone Sr.