Santa

Discussion in 'The Law of God' started by timfost, Dec 10, 2017.

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  1. timfost

    timfost Puritan Board Junior

    We came across someone yesterday who was trying desperately hard to keep their child believing in Santa.

    But imagine explaining to your child one day, "you know Santa, that omnipresent, omniscient rewarder of good? Yeah, he's not real. But Jesus is real. Keep believing in Him."

    Mixed message? It seems that this "innocent lie" can contribute to doubt about our Savior when they eventually are bombarded by an ungodly and unbelieving world that has trouble differentiating between Santa and Jesus.

    :2cents:
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
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  2. Harley

    Harley Puritan Board Sophomore

    For that reason we will not teach our kids about Santa (really, our zest for Christmas is going down too). You give him all the attributes of God including omniscience and near-omnipresence, make him a Pelagian, then admit he's not real? If I'm going to make my kids accountable to God's everywhere present sight, I shouldn't start with deliberate deceit.
     
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  3. OPC'n

    OPC'n Puritan Board Doctor

    Me and my sister taught her child that there was no Santa and she said to us, "Mommy, just don't tell Daddy because he thinks Santa is real.". LOL
     
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  4. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    When my daughter was growing up, I always told her that I didn't believe that Santa was real. I didn't want to be in a position where she could say, "you lied to me about Santa".

    But there were always a few things stuffed down in the stockings for all of us.

    It all worked out well in the end.
     
  5. timfost

    timfost Puritan Board Junior

    Yes, nothing against gifts or stockings or anything like that. We enjoy that as a family. I'm just appalled by the lengths some parents go through to encourage their children to believe a lie.
     
  6. Jake

    Jake Puritan Board Junior

    I remember as an 11-12 year old child talking to a friend of the same age whose crisis of faith started over Santa. It doesn't seem like a wise thing to present mythologies alongside truths to a young mind who has trouble knowing the difference, only later to reveal which is which.
     
  7. greenbaggins

    greenbaggins Administrator Staff Member

    I think it comes from sentimentalism. Few things are as powerful sentimentally as Christmas is.
     
  8. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    I am becoming more and more convinced that my general thought of "just get it out of the church and the rest will take care of itself" is naive and it will not be largely got rid of from the church until this sentimentality for it outside the church is reformed.
     
  9. Joshua

    Joshua Administrator Staff Member

    “I hate the whole business [Christmas].”

    - Professor John Murray (Collected Writings, Vol. 3, p. 120)
     
  10. earl40

    earl40 Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    How dare you carry a principle outside of the local congregation. :)
     
  11. JTB.SDG

    JTB.SDG Puritan Board Sophomore

    Agree with you Tim.
     
  12. Berean

    Berean Puritan Board Doctor

    "Business" is right.
     
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  13. OPC'n

    OPC'n Puritan Board Doctor

    Why don't you and some other men bring this to the church's general assembly stating that observing Christmas in church is forbidden by God but is permitted within people's homes? I don't know how all that's done, but you know what I mean.
     
  14. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Well, for 1. I just said I was becoming increasingly convinced that the latter is a barrier to the former. This would require a constitutional change; the PCA is simply no where near that; it's not even a Sabbatarian denomination (maybe churches here and there, maybe, maybe, a presbytery though the Sabbath is one of the most common exceptions ministers take to the Westminster Standards in the PCA).
     
  15. Ryan&Amber2013

    Ryan&Amber2013 Puritan Board Junior

    Forgive me for my ignorance, but what's wrong with a church preaching on the incarnation in December?
     
  16. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    The timing and subject of a sermon is governed by the scriptural rules governing offense/things in theory indifferent (maybe, maybe not in execution). So I have no issue with a sermon on the incarnation in December as long as it addresses and separates itself from the abuses and superstitions that abound in the church given the timing of the sermon; I mean no need to do that if you preach on the incarnation in July. The pretended holy days of the church calendar are as much *monuments of idolatry as pictures of saints and other such abuses. So as such, given the idolatry and superstition remains rampent, this must be done. *See George Gillespie on monuments of idolatry and why they must be removed. http://www.naphtali.com/articles/ge...n-the-rule-for-purging-monuments-of-idolatry/
     
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  17. timfost

    timfost Puritan Board Junior

    I think churches should be very guarded in celebrating/acknowledging Christmas. While Paul condemns idolatry (1Cor. 10:14), he used an idol's inscription "TO THE UNKNOWN GOD" as an occasion to instruct pagans about the God scripture reveals (Acts 17). In many ways, we live in a similar culture.

    It seems that Christians should take the opportunity of society worshipping a God without knowing and use the occasion to give instruction concerning this "UNKNOWN GOD."

    Jesus is not a little baby. He is a glorified Man who will return not as one offering mercy, but as a righteous Judge. This Judge is unknown in our society at large. If Paul could use the opportunity without syncretism, why can't we do the same?

    Why not seize this opportunity? I hear a lot of commiserating here...
     
  18. arapahoepark

    arapahoepark Puritan Board Graduate

    Let's be honest. The only reason this season is called wonderful is because some sort of materialistic gift is expected through the mythological santa. Take that away it becomes a dreary day in a dreary season meant for skiing.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  19. TylerRay

    TylerRay Puritan Board Senior

    It's called Christkind, or Kristkindl (where "Kris Kringle" comes from)--its the "Christ Child," who comes every December to give gifts. Many hymns are written to worship this false deity.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christkind
     
  20. TylerRay

    TylerRay Puritan Board Senior

    In my childhood, on a particularly bountiful Christmas morning, just after opening presents, my brother and I lifted our voices to the heavens saying, "Thank you Santa!" These prayers disturbed my parents so much that they told us then and there that Santa wasn't real. I still remember sitting there, surrounded by toys and wrapping paper, crying my eyes out.

    My prayers of thanksgiving to Santa, however, were perfectly natural, given what I was told about his omniscience. If he sees me when I'm sleeping, and knows when I'm awake, why not thank him for his bounty?
     
  21. Jack K

    Jack K Puritan Board Professor

    We told our kids that the modern-day Santa tales are make-believe, and that the character is based (just a little bit) on a man who lived long ago and was known as St. Nicholas. It's just best to always be truthful with your kids rather than engage in extended telling of tall tales you will one day have to recant. And yes, I do think this helps them see that you're being straight with them about God.

    We also let our kids know that some families like to keep the make-believe story going, and those families don't tell their little kids it's all make-believe. So it isn't nice to spoil their fun by letting the cat out of the bag. Though I think those parents are making a mistake, I don't want to act like a jerk and decide on my own to re-educate their kids.

    I also try always to give straight answers to kids in my Sunday school classes. This means that on a few occasions when the topic of Santa has come up, things have gotten interesting, and I've ended up talking with parents and suggesting they need to tell their kid the truth about Santa. I have a hard time seeing how a Christian parent can tell their kids Santa is real, but I try to be gracious.
     
  22. Jeri Tanner

    Jeri Tanner Moderator Staff Member

    "Promulgated by Martin Luther at the Protestant Reformation"...yikes!
     
  23. TylerRay

    TylerRay Puritan Board Senior

    Right. It's embarrassing to me, as a protestant, that many of the idolatrous and/or syncretic traditions associated with Christmas are more Lutheran in origin than Roman Catholic.
     
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