Out of all of the prophets, Jeremiah is the one who most leads me to believe that God condemns idolatry and greed. Idolatry can be seen in Christmas, Easter Sunday and Halloween, all of which work against God and God’s way of life.
First, Christmas is about getting not giving. Many say it is a holiday for children, and it is! It teaches a child to want to get, and then later we wonder why many children are so materialistic (Jeremiah 8:10). And its pagan origins are apparent by doing a little research within and outside the Bible. It is clear how God feels about mixing pagan practices with His truth (Jeremiah 10:2-5).
Next, Easter Sunday, originating in worship for the ancient Babylonian goddess Astarte's family, is confusing (Jeremiah 7:18…Jeremiah here uses another of Astarte’s names; “queen of heaven”).Instead of recognizing that Jesus died to save us, the world unwittingly rejoices in the resurrection of Astarte's mythical son Tammuz. God wants us to recognize the sacrifice of His Son the most (Jeremiah 2:11-13). People watch the sunrise on Easter Sunday and rejoice, not realizing they are diminishing Christ's sacrifice and perpetuating sun worship.
Finally, Halloween (or as I choose to call it -- “Hollow Evening”) is a night to masquerade as anything but truth. Again, we say it is a holiday for children, but it is a night to teach the very young the most abominable tactic: trick or treat! Again, it's about get, and this time it is get or else there may be negative consequences. Why don’t we admit what we have embraced by observing these days? These three major holidays of the Western world all teach children to grasp, grab, and want more. Is it any wonder that many grow up with greed and a sense of entitlement as their principal attitudes?
Jeremiah hated idolatry, but he also hated how his people had become so forgetful of the Eternal, the Provider of the benefits they enjoyed. They ceased to be concerned for the poor, the maimed and the widows. The social network had been so unraveled that those slipping through it were abandoned and unnoticed (Jeremiah 5:26-29).
God showed Jeremiah that idolatry and selfishness go together. When we fail to acknowledge God as the giver of every good gift, we tend to think of ourselves as the originator and sustainer of all the benefits we enjoy, and our attitudes proclaim, “Look what my hands have made!” (Jeremiah 17:5, 9; 9:23-24; 23:17). God told Jeremiah to cry out without ceasing and to show the people these two detestable sins. Should we do anything less?
To understand many of the truths behind the world’s most popular holidays, please request our free Bible study aid booklet Holidays or Holy Days: Does It Matter Which Days We Observe?