Maybe Jesus Was Born on December 25 after all

December 21, 2013

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Speaking of not quite right: The tree is too big and that snowman is sort of creepy

People love to make the case that Christmas is a pagan holiday that Christians adopted and Christianized. The primary piece of evidence is that the date is December 25 (a day that falls right in the middle of the Winter Solstice celebrations so important to paganism).  Others point out that Christ’s actual birthday is either unknown or probably in the spring.

While I have responded to this objections here, I just read this interesting article making the case that late December might just be a good date after all. Here is the part I found convincing:

“In the first chapter of Luke, we read that the angel Gabriel told Zechariah that his wife Elizabeth would conceive John the Baptist while Zechariah was performing his priestly duties on the Day of Atonement, also known as Yom Kippur. That feast always falls in either late September or early October.

Luke also tells us that, after Gabriel announced to Mary that she would conceive Jesus, she went in haste to visit Elizabeth, and that Elizabeth was in the sixth month of her pregnancy. If Elizabeth conceived in late September, and Mary visited her in her sixth month, that means Mary conceived Jesus and visited Elizabeth in late March. If Mary conceived Jesus in late March, that places his birth in late December.”

In the end there is nothing that requires us to know the exact date. There is nothing wrong with picking a day and celebrating his birth then. But I found this interesting.

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