The Apple Of God's Eye

December 30, 2009

The Plain Truth About New Year's Eve!

askmatthewpotter.com

How did the celebration of New Year’s Eve begin? Why is the beginning of a year placed in the middle of a dead winter? And where did the many customs surrounding it originate?

Most people carelessly assume that celebrating New Year’s Eve is a Christian custom.  But did the practice of “waiting the old year out” really come from the Bible?  Is January 1 the true beginning of a new year? Who has the authority to determine when a new year begins?

New Year’s is one of the oldest and most universal of all pagan traditions! The custom of celebrating it has remained essentially unchanged for 4,000 years! “There is scarcely a people, ancient or modern, savage or civilized,” writes Theodor H. Gaster, in his definitive book “New Year”, “which has not observed it … in one form or another. Yet no other festival has been celebrated on so many different dates or in so many seemingly different ways.”

In ancient Babylon, New Year’s festivals were closely bound to the pagan feast called “Christmas” today. When and how did New Year’s celebrations originate? Who began the custom? (more…)

Advertisements

June 21, 2009

The Cross: A Symbol Of Faith Or Rank Paganism?

chr4.tripod.com

The hymn “Onward Christian Soldiers” portrays the cross as the identifying sign of everything for which Christianity stands and around which Christians should rally in their fight against the forces of evil.

Throughout the world, people universally regard the cross as THE symbol of Christianity. Churches have crosses atop their steeples, on their walls, windows and doors. Catholics and Protestants wear crosses on necklaces, bracelets, rings, pendants, keychains and items of clothing. People in some churches “cross” themselves by touching the forehead, breast, and then each shoulder to form a symbolic cross in carrying out certain religious rituals or in blessing themselves or others. Some think the sign of the cross to be effective in warding off evil spirits and for generally protecting believers from harm.

So is it okay to wear a cross as a symbol of our personal faith? Is it OK to assume that the early Christian Church revered the cross as part of its religious observance? Check any encyclopedia or historical reference work on this subject. It makes for an interesting study for those who are not afraid to face the truth.

The cross, in many shapes and forms, was used centuries before Christ by abject pagans! Notice a few of the many examples:

  • In the British Museum is a statue of the Assyrian king Samsi-Vul, son of Shalmaneser. Around his neck is an almost perfect Maltese cross. On an accompanying figure of Ashur-nasir-pal is a similar cross.
  • The ancient Greek goddess Diana is pictured with a crosses over her head, in much the same way that the “Virgin Mary” is represented by many medieval artists.
  • Bacchus, the Greek god of wine, is often pictured wearing a headdress adorned with crosses.
  • Different types of crosses were used in Mexico centuries before the Spaniards arrived.
  • The Egyptians used cross symbols in abundance, as did the Hindus.

The shape of the two-beamed cross had its origin in ancient Chaldea and was used to represent the god Tammuz. Tammuz is the deified Nimrod, the first man to lead the opposition against God after the great Flood. He founded the city of Babylon, and along with his mother/wife Semiramis, founded the pagan Babylon mystery religion—the origin of all false religion today. The Egyptians used crosses in abundance, as did the Hindus.

The surprising thing is that the Christian use of the cross did not begin until the time of Constantine, three centuries after Christ. Archaeologists have found no Christian uses of the symbol before that time. According to one writer, “By the middle of the third century A.D. the churches had either departed from, or had transvestied, certain doctrines of the Christian faith. In order to increase the prestige of the apostate ecclesiastical system, pagans were received into the churches apart from regeneration by faith, and were permitted largely to retain their pagan signs and symbols” (W.E. Vine, Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, article “Cross“).

“In the papal system, as is well known, the sign of the cross and the image of the cross are all in all. No prayer can be said, no worship engaged in, no step almost can be taken, without the frequent use of the sign of the cross. The cross is looked upon as the grand charm, as the great refuge in every season of danger, in every hour of temptation as the infallible preservative from all the powers of darkness. The cross is adored with all the homage due only to the Most High; and for anyone to call it, in the hearing of a genuine Romanist, by the Scriptural term, “the accursed tree,” is a mortal offense. To say that such superstitious feeling for the sign of the cross, such worship as Rome pays to a wooden or a metal cross, ever grew out of the saying of Paul, “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ”—that is, in the doctrine of Christ crucified—is a mere absurdity, a shallow subterfuge and pretense. The magic virtues attributed to the so-called sign of the cross, the worship bestowed on it, never came from such a source.”

“The same sign of the cross that Rome now worships was used in the Babylonian Mysteries, was applied by paganism to the same magic purposes, was honored with the same honors. That which is now called the Christian cross was originally no Christian emblem at all, but was the mystic Tau of the Chaldeans and Egyptians—the true original form of the letter T, the initial of the name of Tammuz—which, in Hebrew, radically the same as ancient Chaldee, as found on coins, was formed as in No. 1 of the accompanying woodcut (below), and in Etrurian and Coptic, as in No’s. 2 and 3. That mystic Tau was marked in baptism on the foreheads of those initiated in the Mysteries, and was used in every variety of way as a most sacred symbol. To identify Tammuz with the sun, it was joined sometimes to the circle of the sun, as in No. 4; sometimes it was inserted in the circle, as in No. 5.” (The Two Babylons, Alexander Hislop, page 197).

www.americanpresbyterianchurch.org/Rites%20..

There is an enormous body of evidence proving that the cross is not a Christian symbol but has its roots in rank paganism. Some will argue, however, that we may use the sign of the cross because it represents the manner in which Jesus Christ died, or that they are not using it today to worship a pagan deity. However, using it as a Christian symbol is a product of syncretism, (the blending of pagan traditions and methods of worship with the true worship of God), something God strongly condemns.

Before entering the land of Canaan, God told the Israelites,

. . . take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, “How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.” You shall not worship the LORD your God in that way; for every abomination to the LORD which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. (Deuteronomy 12:30-31)

Does the cross even represent the manner in which Jesus Christ died? I have argued against this in another article on this blog. The Bible does not specifically state which method the Romans used in the crucifixion of Christ, and as far as I can tell, no one has yet conclusively proven on what shape of instrument of torture Christ was crucified. Does it even matter? We have to consider if it is even appropriate to use the very tool that was used to kill our Savior as an emblem of our faith. If Jesus Christ had been killed by hanging, would we use a gallows or a noose as a symbol of our faith? If He had been beheaded, would we use a guillotine? It makes no sense to parade the instrument of shame and death before the world and be proud of it.

Satan the devil knew long before Jesus was born that Christ would die by crucifixion (Numbers 21:4-9; John 3:14; Psalm 22:16). He has deceived the entire world (Rev. 12:9) into worshipping a false Christ by making the cross a popular symbol of worship.

Most importantly, God forbids the use of any item that takes the place of faith. He instructs His true followers to worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 4:23), and forsake all of this world’s false religions, rituals and pagan symbols of worship. This includes the cross, which assists only to add to a dead, empty faith. As the apostle Paul exhorted, Christ’s true followers walk by faith, not by sight (II Cor. 5:7).

April 12, 2009

Easter: A Holiday For A Deceived, Misled, And Misguided World

endrtimes.blogspot.com/2008/03/pagan-worship-... 

endrtimes.blogspot.com/2008/03/pagan-worship-...

Easter Sunday morning devout believers by the millions will be engaged in what they feel to be the reenactment of the resurrection drama. The ceremony will more than likely be staged in some scenic setting. It’s all quite impressive. 

There will be a sunrise service with pomp, pageantry, communion, the joyous announcement that Christ is risen, the hot-cross buns, colorful eggs, chocolate bunnies, new clothes, and games. All of it seems so wholesome, so Christian. But we should not be keeping Easter, and there is a reason. 

Isn’t it peculiar that in the Bible, which Christians accept as the revealed, written Word of God, there is absolutely no command, no example — not even a hint — that Easter should be observed. On the other hand, we are given a strong warning not to improvise on how to worship God. One who is “the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end” (the Creator God) states, ” … If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book” (Revelation 22:18). No matter if we take these words as a threat or a promise, the sobering warning remains. 

But isn’t God being unreasonable? What’s wrong with these quaint, cherished customs that everybody loves? No problem, except, “Thus saith the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen … ” (Jeremiah 10:2). But surely, Easter is not “heathen.” 

One doesn’t need to be a Rhodes scholar to get to the roots of Easter observance. It’s as simple as a trip to a library. For example, look up the article “Easter” in The New Funk & Wagnall’s Encyclopedia

“… it (Easter) embodies traditions of an ancient time antedating the rise of Christianity. The origin of its name is lost in the dim past; some scholars believe it probably is derived from Eastre, Anglo-Saxon name of a Teutonic goddess of spring and fertility … 

“Her festival was celebrated on the vernal equinox, and traditions associated with the festival service in the familiar Easter bunny, symbol of the fertile rabbit, and in the equally familiar colored Easter eggs originally painted with gay hues to represent the sunlight of spring … Such festivals, and the myths and legends which explain their origin, abounded in ancient religions.” That’s Christianity? The roots are suspect, but let’s go on. 

Easter, Astarte, Eostre, Ishtar … What’s in a name? “It is not a Christian name. It bears its Chaldean origin on its very forehead. Easter is nothing else than Astarte, one of the titles of Beltis, the queen of heaven … That name, as found by Layard on the Assyrian monuments, is Ishtar.” (See The Two Babylons, by Alexander Hislop, page 103). 

Continuing, “The worship of Bel and Astarte was very early introduced into Britain, along with the Druids, ‘the priests of the groves.’ ” The Old Testament is profuse in documenting this pagan type of idolatrous worship. Note Jeremiah 7:18-19: “The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven … 

“Do they provoke me to anger? saith the Lord: do they not provoke themselves to the confusion of their own faces?” Notice that cakes were offered to the “queen.” Could this be the origin of the hot-cross buns? 

“The ‘buns’ … were used in the worship of the queen of heaven, the goddess Easter, as early as the days of Cecrops, the founder of Athens — that is, 1,500 years before the Christian era” (ibid., page 108). 

Other pagan traditions revolving around the spring festivities include the commemoration of the death and resurrection of Tammuz, otherwise known as Bacchus (the lamented one). He was often pictured (and worshiped) as a little child in his mother’s arms (ibid., pages 21-22). This adoration of Tammuz was enacted by the believers with “… their faces toward the east: and they worshiped the sun toward the east (at sunrise) … ” Sunrise service? Sounds familiar, and God comments on this tradition in Ezekiel 8. He has a word for it. It’s spelled: abomination! 

As decades and centuries passed, the dominant “Christian” Church headquartered at Rome continued to bring the heathen masses into the fold by amalgamating their pagan practices, apparently oblivious of Jeremiah 10:2. And so the nominal Christianity grew, but was the God of the Bible in it? 

The deceived, misled, misguided world (see Revelation 12:9) has its Easter. 

The God of heaven has given us the Holy Days. In the springtime, when nature bursts forth with new life, God ordained special feasts. A time of gladness and of profound meaning — for young and old alike. Through these days God unfolds His master plan: the purpose of life, the precious sacrifice of Jesus Christ and the incredible potential that we have of being born into the very Family of God. Now that’s something to celebrate and get excited about. 

Source: The Good News, March 1979 

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.