File 4 of 8
A Voice In The Wilderness
The Almighty's Feast Days
The Christian Church & Israel
Over the years the Christian church has made many serious
mistakes; one of which was to suppose that because Israel, in
the main, rejected the Son of God, Yahweh abandoned His chosen
people and transferred His favours and work to the Gentile church.
As mentioned previously, this is a colossal error; because the
Most High promised never to abandon His chosen people Israel.
All that happened when the leaders of Israel rejected Jesus Christ
was that the Holy Spirit directed certain Apostles to take the
Gospel to the Gentiles, who had previously been mostly excluded
from Yahweh's Truth. When Paul and Barnabas answered that
call, the 'Time of the Gentiles' began and a partial
spiritual blindness settled on Israel. But Israel
was not abandoned. She was simply blinded
to the Gospel which she had stubbornly refused to
accept. That spiritual blindness is being removed at this very
moment as thousands of Israelis around the world accept Yeshua
and the Gospel of Salvation their forefathers rejected many centuries
Another fact that comparatively few Christians realize is that
every believer in Jesus Christ is considered by the Almighty
to be a 'child of Abraham'. In other words Gentiles
who believe in Yeshua the Messiah ( Jesus Christ ) are spiritual
Israelites - Jews! Here is proof of this little-known
||28: For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither
is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
29: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that
of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is
not of men, but of God.
||26: For ye are all the children of God by faith in
27: For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have
put on Christ.
28: There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free,
there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
29: And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs
according to the promise.
In the book of Romans Paul further figuratively explains how
Yahweh prunes away unbelieving Israelites from the
Olive of Israel and in their place grafts in believing
Gentiles. In other words, believing Gentiles become spiritual
Israelites and thereafter partake of the goodness of the
Olive of Israel. Jews are not grafted into the Gentile
church. It is the other way around; believing Gentiles are grafted
onto the Olive of Israel; we become joint-heirs of the Kingdom
of God with the Jews! Believing Gentiles, therefore, should
not insult Israelis by assuming that Yahweh has abandoned
them in favour of the Christian church. Because that is certainly
not the case. To fix this little-known fact in your mind, let me again
quote the Apostle Paul:
||16: For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also
holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches.
17: And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being
a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them; and with them
partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;
18: Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest
not the root, but the root thee.
19: Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might
be graffed in.
20: Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest
by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:
21: For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he
also spare not thee
25: For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery,
lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is
happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
26: And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come
out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:
||6: That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs,
and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by
In view of these amazing facts, everyone, especially Christians,
should treat the people of Israel - and their fellow Christians
for that matter - with respect. To be sure, some Jews as
in the days of old, are the 'children of the Devil'
( John 8:44 ); but the whole nation must not be condemned because
of the few. The Jew is the 'Apple of God's eye'
and all who oppose them will find themselves fighting God! ( Zechariah 2:7-8 )
How true were the words of the mercenary prophet Balaam, who,
in spite of himself, pronounced this eternal truth as he lifted
up his eyes and beheld the people of Israel:
Blessed is he that blesseth thee, and cursed
is he that curseth thee.
( Numbers 24:9 )
It is also a dangerous thing for Gentile Christians to smugly
gloat over Israel's blindness in rejecting Jesus and
his Gospel. Gentile boasting is out of order, because the church,
though paying lip service to Jesus Christ, has rejected the very
commandments the Saviour came to magnify. The Bible tells
us that Jesus came to save mankind from sin, that is from disobedience.
||21: And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call
his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
||3: ... God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful
flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
4: hat the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled
in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
In other words, the purpose for which Jesus came to earth
was to save believers from sin, that is, from
breaking God's law, from disobedience. His final objective is
'that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in
us.' But what do we find in the Christian church? We
find that millions, like ancient Israel, have abandoned the
law of God and are sinning with impunity. Indeed the average
person would be hard pressed to tell you even five of the Ten
Commandments, let alone all ten. Why this almost
incredible ignorance of so important a law? The answer is,
because the Ten Commandments are not being taught in most churches
and schools. The law of God is considered, by many, to be impossible
to keep and is now obsolete. Some even go so far as to say that
it is barbaric! As for the Sabbath commandment, it has become
an embarrassment to most Christian ministers and priests. Few
will ever preach about Sabbath-keeping. But the fact remains,
that without the Ten Commandments it is impossible to define
sin, let alone cope with sin's horrifying consequences.
The Bible says:
||20: ... for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
||7: What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid.
Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known
lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.
|1 John 3:
||4: Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the
law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
In other words, God's law tells us what actions are right and
acceptable and what actions are wrong and unacceptable - to
Him. If the Ten Commandments are not taught in the schools and
churches, then men, women and children will have absolutely no
idea how to behave. Nor will they feel guilty when they sin. They
will do as they please and the rule of the jungle will take
over. Is it any wonder that there is so much evil in the world,
so much violence and vice, so much sexual immorality and sin?
It is because the knowledge of righteousness, which God's
law alone imparts, is fading from the earth. Comparatively
few people know anything about the Almighty's standard of morals.
His commandments are not being taught any more; so evil is taking
over. As for the weekly and annual Sabbaths of the LORD, they
are despised and rejected. In their place we find an array
of human traditions and pagan celebrations - all abhorrent
to the Most High. Consider these staggering quotations about pagan
holidays in the Christian calendar.
Christmas is not a Bible festival. It is an ancient pagan festival
masquerading as the birthday of the Son of God.
What about Easter? How did this pagan, fertility festival enter
the Christian calendar? Most certainly there is no mention of
Easter eggs in the Scriptures; no mention of bunny rabbits. Where
did they come from? Is it wrong to celebrate Easter?
The facts will surprise you; but here are a few quotations about
Easter from Alexander Hislop's famous book The Two Babylons,
published by S W Partridge & Co., 4 Soho Sq., London. ( ISBN
0 7136 0470 0 ).
- "Indeed it is admitted by the most learned and candid
of writers of all parties that the day of our LORD's birth cannot
be determined and that within the Christian church no festival
as Christmas was ever heard of till the third century, and that
not till the third century was far advanced did it gain much observance.
How then did the Romanish church fix on December 25th as Christmas
day? Why thus: Long before the fourth century and long before
the Christian era itself, a festival was celebrated among the
heathen at the precise time of the year, in honour of the birth
of the Son of the Babylonian Queen of Heaven: and it
may fairly be assumed that in order to conciliate the heathen
and to swell the nominal adherents of Christianity, the same festival
was adopted by the Roman Church giving it only the name Christ.
This tendency on the part of the Christians to meet paganism half-way
was very early adopted ... Upright men strove to stem the tide,
but in spite of all their efforts the apostasy went on, till the
church, with the exception of a small remnant, was submerged under
pagan superstition. That Christmas was originally a pagan festival
is beyond all doubt. The time of the year, and the ceremonies
with which it is still celebrated proves its origin. In Egypt
the Son of Isis, the Egyptian title for the Queen of Heaven, was
born at this very time, about the time of the winter solstice."
( The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop , page 93 )
- "Christmas was not among the earliest festivals
of the church... the first evidence of the feast is from Egypt."
( Catholic Encyclopaedia 1911 edition )
- "It is nevertheless almost certain that the 25th of
December cannot be the nativity of the Saviour, for it is
then the height of the rainy season in Judaea, and shepherds could
hardly be watching their flocks by night in the plains. Not casually
or arbitrarily was the festival of the Nativity celebrated on
the 25th December. One of the principal causes that co-operated
in fixing this period was that almost all the heathen nations
regarded the winter solstice as the turning point of the year
- the beginning of the powers of nature and of the gods who
were originally merely symbolical personifications of these."( Chambers
Encyclopaedia 1908 edition article Christmas )
- "There can be no doubt, then, that the Pagan festival
at the winter solstice - in other words, Christmas - was held
in honour of the birth of the Babylonian Messiah." ( The
Two Babylons page 102 )
- "Then look at Easter. What means the term Easter itself?
It is not a Christian name. It bears its Chaldean origin on its
forehead. Easter is nothing else than Astarte, one
of the titles of Beltis, the queen of heaven, whose name,
as pronounced by the people of Nineveh, was evidently identical
with that now in common use in this country. That name, as found
by Layard on the Assyrian monuments, is Ishtar. The worship
of Bel and Astarte was very early introduced into Britain, along
with the Druids, 'the priests of the groves.'" ( page
- "To conciliate the Pagans to nominal Christianity,
Rome, pursuing its usual policy, took measures to get the
Christian and Pagan festivals amalgamated, and, by a complicated
but skilful adjustment of the calendar, it was found no difficult
matter, in general to get Paganism and Christianity, now far sunk
in idolatry - in this as in so many other things, to shake hands."
( page 105 )
- "The hot cross buns of Good Friday and the dyed eggs
of Easter Sunday, figured in the Chaldean rites just as they do
now. The 'buns' known too by the identical name, 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,
1500 years before the Christian era... The prophet Jeremiah takes
notice of this kind of offering when he says: 'The children gather
wood, the fathers kindle the fire, and the women make cakes to
the queen of heaven"- Astarte! ( Jeremiah 7:18 page
- "In ancient times eggs were used in the religious
rites of the Egyptians and the Greeks, and were hung up for mystic
purposes in their temples. From Egypt these sacred eggs can be
distinctly traced to the banks of the Euphrates. The classic poets
are full of the fable of the mystic egg of the Babylonians;
and thus it is told by Hyginus, the Egyptian, the learned keeper
of the Palatine library at Rome, in the time of Augustus, who
was skilled in all the wisdom of his native country: 'An egg of
wondrous size is said to have fallen from heaven into the river
Euphrates. The fishes rolled it to the bank, where the doves having
settled upon it, and hatched it, out came Venus, who afterwards
was called the Syrian Goddess'" - that is Astarte.
Hence the egg became one of the symbols of Astarte or Easter."
( page 108 )
- "The guilt of idolatry is regarded by many as comparatively
slight and insignificant guilt. But not so does the God of
heaven regard it. Which is the commandment of all the ten that
is fenced about with the most solemn and awful sanctions? It is
the second: 'Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or
any likeness of anything that is in the heaven above, or that
is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I
the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the
fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation
of them that hate me.' These words were spoken by God's own lips,
they were written by God's own finger on the tables of stone:
not for the instruction of the seed of Abraham only, but of all
the tribes and generations of mankind. No other commandment has
such a threatening attached to it as this. Now, if God has
threatened to visit the sin of idolatry above all other sins,
and if we find the heavy judgments of God pressing upon us as
a nation, while this very sin is crying to heaven against us,
ought it not to be a matter of earnest inquiry, if among all our
other national sins, which are both many and great, this may not
form the very head and front of our offending." ( page 127 )
Similar quotations can be found in Hislop's 330 page book
about other pagan traditions which over the centuries have crept
into the Christian calendar, false teachings such as:
- The Nativity of St John ( Held immediately after the
summer solstice )
- The Feast of the Assumption ( A nineteenth century human
- Idol processions / Relic worship: the clothing and crowning
of images etc.
Not one of these practices is endorsed in the holy Scriptures.
They are pagan through and through. They were adopted centuries
ago by a spiritually blind ecclesiastical hierarchy. Celebrating
these pagan festivals is nothing but baptized idolatry;
and as such is abhorrent to the Almighty and His Son.
To be sure, there is nothing wrong with a human tradition -
if it does not clash with a command of the Almighty God.
But if a tradition conflicts with a divine commandment, as most
of the popular Christian festivals do, then once they are recognized
for what they are, their continued acceptance will neutralize
one's worship, making it vain, pointless and futile. Their continued
use can even jeopardize one's salvation. This frightening fact
is clearly taught by the Master himself:
||6: He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias
prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth
me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.
7: Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines
the commandments of men.
||8: This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth,
and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
9: But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines
the commandments of men.
The Christian church is guilty of placing the traditions
of men above the commandments of God. The celebrating of Christmas,
Easter, Ash-Wednesday, the Nativity of St John, the Feast of
the Assumption, Hallowe'en and Sunday etc. are all human traditions.
Not one of these festivals was authorized by the LORD God.
They are all spiritual weeds in the Garden of Salvation. Celebrating
them in preference to Yahweh's Sabbaths is no more than self-deluding
idolatry. These facts may stun or even anger some who read them.
But they must be told. Because replacing a divine commandment
with a human tradition is a very serious sin. At the coming
Judgment would you forgive me for not telling you the Truth?
Then came his disciples, and said unto him,
Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying?
But he answered and said,
Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up.
Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead
the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.
( Matthew 15:12-14 )
A Voice In The Wilderness
The Almighty's Feast Days
Author: Elder: David B. Loughran - Stewarton Bible School - Stewarton Scotland
Elder: Max W. Mader
A Voice In The Wilderness - Canada
Web-Site - www.avoiceinthewilderness.org
First published 1979 / Placed on the Internet 1996 / Updated: 1998 / Updated: 2002