Biblical Evidence Shows Jesus Christ Wasn't Born on Dec. 25



Is it even possible that December 25 could be the day of Christ's birth?

Shepherd will sheep and goats.
A shepherd watching the flock of goats and sheep.

Source: Photos.com

History convincingly shows that Dec. 25 was popularized as the date for Christmas, not because Christ was born on that day but because it was already popular in pagan religious celebrations as the birthday of the sun.

But is it possible that December 25 could be the day of Christ's birth?

"Lacking any scriptural pointers to Jesus's birthday, early Christian teachers suggested dates all over the calendar. Clement. . . picked November 18. Hippolytus . . . figured Christ must have been born on a Wednesday . . . An anonymous document[,] believed to have been written in North Africa around A.D. 243, placed Jesus's birth on March 28" (Jeffery Sheler, U.S. News & World Report, "In Search of Christmas," Dec. 23, 1996, p. 58).

A careful analysis of Scripture, however, clearly indicates that Dec. 25 is an unlikely date for Christ's birth. Here are two primary reasons:

First, we know that shepherds were in the fields watching their flocks at the time of Jesus' birth (Luke:2:7-8). Shepherds were not in the fields during December. According to Celebrations: The Complete Book of American Holidays, Luke's account "suggests that Jesus may have been born in summer or early fall. Since December is cold and rainy in Judea, it is likely the shepherds would have sought shelter for their flocks at night" (p. 309).

Similarly, The Interpreter's One-Volume Commentary says this passage argues "against the birth [of Christ] occurring on Dec. 25 since the weather would not have permitted" shepherds watching over their flocks in the fields at night.

Second, Jesus' parents came to Bethlehem to register in a Roman census (Luke:2:1-4). Such censuses were not taken in winter, when temperatures often dropped below freezing and roads were in poor condition. Taking a census under such conditions would have been self-defeating.

Given the difficulties and the desire to bring pagans into Christianity, "the important fact then . . . to get clearly into your head is that the fixing of the date as December 25th was a compromise with paganism" (William Walsh, The Story of Santa Klaus, 1970, p. 62).

If Jesus Christ wasn't born on December 25, does the Bible indicate when He was born?

The biblical accounts point to the fall of the year as the most likely time of Jesus' birth, based on the conception and birth of John the Baptist.

Since Elizabeth (John's mother) was in her sixth month of pregnancy when Jesus was conceived (Luke:1:24-36), we can determine the approximate time of year Jesus was born if we know when John was born. John's father, Zacharias, was a priest serving in the Jerusalem temple during the course of Abijah (Luke:1:5). Historical calculations indicate this course of service corresponded to June 13-19 in that year ( The Companion Bible, 1974, Appendix 179, p. 200).

It was during this time of temple service that Zacharias learned that he and his wife Elizabeth would have a child (Luke:1:8-13). After he completed his service and traveled home, Elizabeth conceived (Luke:1:23-24). Assuming John's conception took place near the end of June, adding nine months brings us to the end of March as the most likely time for John's birth. Adding another six months (the difference in ages between John and Jesus) brings us to the end of September as the likely time of Jesus' birth. 


TinaPanagos

TinaPanagos's picture

I am wondering if anyone really even asks this question. I overheard it said on televison and HAD to google this. I am not quite surprised at the validity. The things we learn. Now I am getting a yen to research more on the Bible.

Thank you for the knowledge.
Tina




ckc2000rn

ckc2000rn's picture

Tina
This concept about Christmas not being Biblical sound really got me going (frustrated and angry) in 2003 to search more. I felt so misled through out my life thinking it was Biblical and Jesus was born on that day. I would have a birthday cake to represent His birthday. I pray this will also lead you to read more and discover more. You will be amazed of what is taught in Traditional churches compared to what God teaches us in His Word. It totally changed my life; the truth will set you free. Tina dig in deep and you will leave a fuller life.




James Stewart1

James Stewart1's picture

What supposed Christian does not know this? The ones who do research somehow do not research very well, or they never leave the Church to do it. If they did they would have certainly come across the name Horus.

Now if you come across it, let me give you an absolute case for people who do who MUST be indoctrinated.

If I told you Zeus was the Man of Steel, could jump tall buildings in a single bound, more powerful than a locomotive and faster than a speeding bullet... you would say "Fool... you are talking of Superman". Now if I proved to you that all of those things were also aspects of Zeus... would you not say that in fact there is NO doubt in your mind that Superman was stolen and duplicated from Zeus using another name? Wouldn't you? Enough for a Court of Law?

Well with Jesus<> Horus there are 43 of the same similarities. Go figure! And not only was Horus born on December the 25th, but so were so many of the others. Not copies of Jesus, much the reverse, as they ALL are much older than even the Torah.




therese_catajoy

therese_catajoy's picture

it is not very important to know the exact date of Jesus Christ's birth, instead the most important is to recognize and celebrate that Jesus was born to save us.




Dee Dee H

Dee Dee H's picture

Jesus DIED to save us. The bible gives us the exact date of his death, Nisan 14, because this was what we should remember.
It does not give us the exact date of his birth because it was not important.
In fact, only 2 birthday celebrations are mentioned in the bible, both of which had bad things happen at them. One of these was John the baptist being beheaded.
This would indicate that revelries to celebrate the day of anyone's birth are not scriptural, after all, if knowing Jesus exact day of birth is not important, how much less important is the date of our birth?




tyler

tyler's picture

@James Stuart1: I get your superman metaphor and it is rather clever. but consider the purpose of making such the case. Jesus was not born on solstice, (the 25th December, or any where near) the biblical record shows that. But it is careful not to record the date probably because it was not God's purpose to have people venerate the birth. however the church in Rome decided to use the already occurring worship of pagan deities re-branded with Jesus' name to garner more adherents. This is the point of the article, christmas is not the birthday of Christ. I assume you are trying to say that because powers of Zeus and Horus were ascribed to Jesus by the catholic church and it's offshoots that this refutes the existence/ deity of Christ. This is where we differ, one could well make the case that such acts do cast doubt on the people making those claims. But the bible does not make these claims, but people who claim Christianity but make up doctrine from existing myth and philosophy rather than the record of the bible.




tyler

tyler's picture

@therese_catajoy: Christ never said that we should celebrate His birth. He was not "born" to save us, he "Died" to save us. He asked us to celebrate this act: His Death not his Birth. 1Corinthians 11:26
http://www.ucg.org/files/booklets/holidays-or-holy-days-does-it-matter-w...

@DeeDee H:
whether you celebrate your own birthday is really not addressed in scripture at all. you are making an argument from silence. perhaps if people are considering whether it is right to celebrate any birthday, they should and in face most likely do so as a non religious manner. celebrating is not prohibited in the bible except if it is done to worship something other than God, or partaken of in a sinful manner. if you do not think it is appropriate dont do it. but if you wish to argue that no one should you will need proof that is simply not available in scripture.




Malachi 3_16-18

Malachi 3_16-18's picture

JamesStewart1, I am not sure where you are coming from, even though I know something of Horus the Egyptian sun-god. The overriding thing to keep in mind is that Satan the Devil is the master of deception; after all, he has deceived the whole world (ourselves included, prior to conversion) - Rev:12:9 and 2 Cor:4:4. He makes his “ministers” appear to be ministers, or servants, of righteousness (2 Cor:11:15).




MarcelaH

MarcelaH's picture

Not sure where is James Stewart1 going with his dissertation? humans share over 98% of their genes with some chimps and we share 50% of our genetic make up with a banana.

I agree Jesus was not born on December 25th during the winter. Based on comments above plus the child wouldn't have survived the weather. Mary covered him with pieces of cloth. During the winter she would have chosen animal skins or something warmer: Luke:2:7 "...she wrapped the baby with pieces of cloth and laid him in a feeding trough.".




randye

randye's picture

the resurrection is more important not his birth




queen vic

queen vic's picture

The resurrection is def more important. In response to those being angered for just finding this out....this just goes to show you have to form your own relationship with God and know and study the word yourself. You can't walk around here believing everything you were taught as a child and you can't possibly be a light to world if you don't know the word. Your soul is more valuable than believing what someone has told you. The people who will argue you with you over religion or say that it's fake are the ones who will have researched yours. You have to know the truth, and moreover you have to educate yourselves on other religions as well.




ceeton

ceeton's picture

I've known this a long time ago, the problem is that people are so bind, people love being misled. People are so bent on "my pastor said than following the reality of the scriptures. Pls do me a favor of spreading this information where it can get to the masses faster and lets see if this "ignorance jingoism" can at least reduce. THANKS fOR THE INFORMATION ANYWAY!




Shay Hicks

Shay Hicks's picture

I think we are missing the point. Any educated believer knows Jesus was not born on Dec 25. The reason we celebrate the birth is because THAT night God Broke his silence and the greatest gift of love ever entered the world. I cant help but celebrate whenever I realize that God became one of us. I don't care what day of the year we celebrate it on, but I know that Christmas has strengthened my relationship with him. A baby boy, born to die for us. Rejoice our savior was born.




Schakk

Schakk's picture

Randye:

It is very common for one person to say his birth, death, or resurrection is more important than the other. This article, however, is not debating that; it is simply explaining the fallacies with Jesus's birthday being the 25th of December. If you do want to go into that, I understand that the resurrection had to be in order to fulfill the prophecy, but his death is what paid off our debt of sin, that gave us a chance in heaven. And if Jesus had not been born, then he could not have died and certainly not resurrected. Just something to think on.




Sequoiarayne

Sequoiarayne's picture

The fact is, no matter if you celebrate the life of Jesus or not, this holiday was stolen by the Pagan/Wiccan holiday Yule and that it bothers Pagans/Wiccans of today. This day and age we need to teach our children facts, for the more false information they find out, the more they stop believing. No matter what religion they learn. Many say it's Jesus's birthday on Christmas, which it is not. I am not about to teach my child a lie. In reality Christmas, minus the "T" is actually the celebration of the German pagan god Kris Kringle. "Krismas" "Santa Clause". He spreads cheer and gives gifts to poor children. Yule, the Winter Solstice and Kris Kringle are what the holiday are about. Not Jesus. Christians just thought it would be an easy way to convert Pagans. But guess what? It didn't work and now, Pagans/Wiccans are back trying to save what was once their rightful celebration. In my opinion, a more realistic meaning to the celebration of the holiday. Why can't you just pick another day to celebrate the life of Christ? Why must you oppress and fight those that have had their religion and holiday stolen from them? I seriously do not think Jesus would mind.




keyboardjimmy

keyboardjimmy's picture

Birth, death, resurrection....what about his life and what he commanded us to do should we accept the challenge?




Malachi 3_16-18

Malachi 3_16-18's picture

Keyboardjimmy,

Absolutely! I think we SHOULD accept Jesus' resurrection to life and what He commanded us to do. There is other material on ucg.org that will help those wanting to truly find out more about following what He said. For starters, "The Road to Eternal Life" and "What Is Your Destiny?"

The above article, concerning Jesus not being born December 25, was written with obedience to Him in mind, too, because it points out one of the many fallacies of Christmas beliefs. For more info. on the topic of Christmas, which is important since we must worship God in spirit and truth (Jn:4:23-24), you may be interested in "Holidays or Holy Days: Does It Matter Which Days We Observe?"




Ivan Veller

Ivan Veller's picture

Yes Keyboardjimmy,

Could traditional Christianity’s focus on the historical birth, death, & resurrection of the person of Jesus risk missing His teaching that we’re to “become holy” & go on “to live lives that befit holiness (1 Peter:1:16)”? http://www.ucg.org/holidays-and-holy-days/passover-season-death-and-life...

“Many…rely on a false ‘grace’ that is merely a license to sin—unaccompanied by true repentance, obedience and overcoming”: http://www.ucg.org/booklet/who-god/partaking-divine-nature/jesus-christ-...

Why should preaching Christ start at his birth and end at the tomb? Wasn’t His purpose to make “possible for all people to enter an intimate relationship with Him” & the Father—closely joined in heart, mind, & soul? Why does He “write His laws on the believer's heart and mind (Hebrews:8:8)” today? http://www.ucg.org/suffering/seven-reasons-why-jesus-was-born/

Yes, Jesus “loves you…But…Jesus requires His followers to obey the Father's commandments, both for their own good and for the benefit and blessing of all those around them (1 John:2:3-6; 5:3)”: http://www.ucg.org/booklet/jesus-christ-real-story/your-date-destiny-mee...




Ivan Veller

Ivan Veller's picture

Hi Sequoiarayne,

Re: “this holiday was stolen” from pagan celebrations of “the Winter Solstice”—exactly! “‘Once given a Christian basis the festival became fully established in Europe with many of its pagan elements undisturbed’”: http://www.ucg.org/holidays-and-holy-days/do-you-know-surprising-origins...

Re: “Yule”—yes, “‘German and Celtic Yule rites’” represented “‘rebirth...the evergreen was a symbol of the life that would return in the spring…[while the burning of the Yule log] was important in dispelling the growing darkness of the solstice’”: http://www.ucg.org/booklet/holidays-or-holy-days-does-it-matter-which-da...

Re: “Christians just thought it would be an easy way to convert Pagans”—but instead, “‘Christianity was in turn infiltrated, and to a considerable extent subverted, by the paganism it was supposed to destroy’” (a fascinating study): http://www.ucg.org/bible-study/lessons-no-one-taught-me-about-christmas-...

~~~

Christians—Instead of setting up an evergreen tree in your house, why not let God “transplan[t]” you to His “own house” (Psalm:92:12, NLT 2007)?

Why not let the Pagans have their holiday back?




Bradley Westmoreland

Bradley Westmoreland's picture

Does it matter when you celebrate Jesus' birthday? When was Jesus born? Let's dig in deep.
Christ never said that we should celebrate His birth. He "Died" to save us. And when we partake of communion, we are proclaiming the fact that He died for us until His return. 1 Corinthians:11:26
Due to many scholar's assumptions, figuring out exactly when Jesus was born has become near impossible, though there are some very awesome points to be made.
The thing is, we have to keep in mind what Jesus wants us to remember, and what we are remembering when we partake of the communion, the Lord's Supper, is His death for the remission of sins.
It is more important to know when to partake of the passover, rather than the birth of Jesus. The Passover is what we do to signify what Jesus did for us, and it IS what He commands us to remember and do. Luke:22:19 And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”
So, let's take a look at when the PASSOVER would have been. We know that the Passover was in Exodus when they would celebrate when God freed the Israelites from Egypt. When it started



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