Monday, November 26, 2018

It’s that time of year where we see plastic Santas, sleighs and reindeer popping up all over the place….

So, I ran a bunch of errands this afternoon, and guess what I saw starting to spring up all over the place .... big plastic Santas, sleighs and reindeer and huge candy canes, etc. (Not surprisingly, I haven't yet seen any manger scenes.) And everywhere I went, I was inundated with songs like "Jingle Bell Rock" and "Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer" and a plethora of other secular Christmas songs .....

So, yeah, nothing about the "Christ child." Of course. Because - let's be honest here - "Christmas" IS nothing more than just another commercial "holiday" designed to part you with your money! (Sure many Christians will attend Christmas eve services at some church, but that's just a couple of hours out of the whole "Christmas season"... Big deal.).

Anyway, you can't watch TV or go to any shopping establishment without being inundated with all the "Christmas shopping deals." Buy! Buy! Buy! After all, that's what Christmas is all about for most, right? You certainly don't ever see any advertisements about how it's supposedly the birthday of Jesus (which is it is NOT, by the way!) , or any manger scenes at the malls. All you see is "bargains" for your Christmas shopping experience.

QUESTION: What's with this "gift-giving," anyway? The "Three Wise Men" gave gifts to the Messiah, not each other! (And that actually didn't happen until a week or so later, sometime after he was circumcised.  See the explanation below by author and Aramaic and Hebrew scholar Andrew Gabriel Roth.)

No, really, why give presents to each other - with many going into debt to do so, which is actually another thing that goes against Scripture? (See Romans 13:8, Psalm 37:21, Proverbs 28:8; Matthew 25:27 and Leviticus 25:35-38.)

Oh, and let's not forget the millions or even billions of trees being chopped down and then discarded like trash all over the world at this time of year! What, exactly do trees have to do with "the birth of Jesus? (Check out Jeremiah 10 to see what YHWH thinks of our traditions!.) Did someone drag a pine or fir tree into the Sukkah where Y'shua was born (during the Feast of Sukkot, in the September/October time frame)?

If people wish to celebrate Christmas, that's fine. My wish is that if they choose to do so, they would at least concentrate on making it all about GOD, instead of themselves. Better yet, learn about His commanded Feasts/Appointed Times outlined in Torah, which ARE all about HIM and what HE did for man....

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Borrowed from "Nativity in the Stars" by Andrew Gabriel Roth, which addresses the timeframe of the arrival of the Three Wise men at the time of Messiah’s birth:

Notice both Matthew and in Luke the shift in language goes from calling Y’shua an INFANT to calling him a CHILD or a BOY. This is true in Greek and in Aramaic.

The most significant place that “child” or “boy” appears rather than “infant” is in Matthew 2:11 and 13:  “And they entered the house and they saw the boy with Maryam, his mother, and they fell (and) worshipped him, and they opened their treasures and offered to him gifts (of) gold and myrrh and incense…the messenger of Master”

YHWH appeared to Yosip in a dream and said to him, Matthew 2:13: "Arise, take the boy and his mother and flee to Misrayin and there remain until I tell you. For Herodus is going to seek the boy as to destroy him.“

So, by the time the Magi see Y’shua, he is called a BOY, or talia in Aramaic. The Hebrew equivalent to this is zakhar, but the question is:  What is the one time in Scripture when it is appropriate to call an “infant” by the name “boy” (talia/zakhar) instead?

“This is my covenant which you must keep between myself and you, and your descendants after you: every one of your males (zakhar/רָכָז) must be circumcised. You must circumcise the flesh of your foreskin, and that will be the sign of the covenant between myself and you. As soon as he is eight days old, every one of your males (zakhar/רָכָז ) generation after generation, must be circumcised, including slaves born within the household or bought from a foreigner not of your descent.” (Genesis 17:10-12 NJB)

So, this is the only time that an infant is a MALE or a BOY, at circumcision!

The Greek version of the NT also seems to support the Jewish understanding.

The same Greek word paidon (παιδίον) can refer either to an infant (Luke 1:59, John 16:21) or to a toddler.

In Greek, Luke 1:59 calls Y’shua this literally when he is an 8-day old infant, so the Magi’s arrival to see the “child” is actually pointing to an 8-day old infant in the Greek!

The text is also very clear that the Magi left very soon after seeing the Set-Apart family, and the family also left for Egypt immediately thereafter.  This means the Magi must have seen Y’shua just AFTER his circumcision on the 8th day of his life; which is, in turn, sometime during Jupiter’s “pause” over Bethlehem (September 19-26).

Eight days before September 19-26 would put Y’shua’s birth sometime between September 11th and 18th , 5 BCE.

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