In this world of lies, confusion (IICorinthians 4:3-4) and gross darkness (Isaiah 60:1-2), WE ALL MUST EXAMINE what we follow and believe in, and then compare it diligently to the Lord's words and commandments:
IICorinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
IThessalonians 5:21 Prove all things;
hold fast that which is good.
Many people follow lies, darkness and evil customs such as Christmas and religions, and do not know such things are against the Lord. Christmas IS NOT of the word of truth, but is of the world, NOT the Lord: Colossians 2:8, James 4:4, Ephesians 5:11, IJohn 2:15-17, Romans 12:2, etc. Christmas is an example of society's traditions that will separate us from following the Lord (Matthew 6:24, Romans 12:1-2, James 4:4-5, IJohn 2:15-17, Isaiah 59:1-2, etc.).
It is a strong and seducing tradition in this world, with the music, "family time" and gift-giving, but it is sinful with absolutely no link to Jesus Christ and holiness. Without carefully studying and following the bible, you will continue to be deceived by the world into following wickedness through relying on your own conscience and feelings, instead of the LORD'S commandments which guide us:
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
Matthew 22:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.
Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
When we become complacent, proud or feel that we know the bible and cannot be taught by anyone outside our comfort zone, we become stagnant, and this is dangerous and gives Satan the advantage over us, especially when we have not completely built our foundation on Christ/truth. Through the Lord we will always be fruitful and increasing in wisdom and knowledge. He will always feed us when we are humble and teachable, which will keep us constantly growing (John 15:1-8):
John 15:1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.
:2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
:3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
:6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
:8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
A scripture in which the characteristics of christmas are mentioned is Jeremiah the 10th chapter (Jeremiah 10:1-5), as a custom to not partake in, because it is unholy and WORLDLY. The Lord makes it very simple and easy to serve Him (Matthew 11:28-30). Christ referred to his "yoke" as being easy, because serving Him is simple when we apply His words and commandments. ANYTHING not in the bible, such as religion, worldly holidays, and doctrines of men are a lie, and therefore not of the LORD (IJohn 2:21). The LORD gave us His words and contained them in one source, the bible, so that we could humbly learn and know right from wrong. It is time we awake to our Lord's call to righteousness, and to make a choice (Mark 1:15) whether to serve the Lord or Satan's world and wickedness (Matthew 6:24, Deuteronomy 30:15, Luke 4:5-8, Daniel 12:2, IJohn 5:19).
IJohn 5:19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.
Luke 4:5 And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
:6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. [Revelation 13:3-4, Proverbs 29:2, IIThessalonians 2:4-9, Isaiah 14:19-21, Job 9:24, James 4:4, John 7:7, Titus 2:11-12, Matthew 6:24, etc]
:7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.
:8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
Many of us whom the LORD is mercifully awakening, followed Christmas and other holidays with no biblical links to Christ or the Heavenly Father: Titus 3:2-3. We broke all of the LORD'S commandments as a way of life prior to the LORD drawing us to him, so we do not sit in judgment nor with pride as we share the scriptures to which the Lord has opened our understanding enough to see and teach. The Heavenly Father and Christ are GREAT. We don't seek vain glory nor praise ourselves, nor to exalt any false gods or their religions, nor other males or females, only the Heavenly Father and Christ are to be honored and praised:
Psalms 96:4 For the LORD is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods.
:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens;
IICorinthians 4:5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.
All praises, honor and glory are for the Heavenly Father and our Lord Jesus Christ only! This cannot be emphasized enough, because many people give glory and reverence to priests, popes, pastors, preachers and man, when all glory and honor should only be given to the Heavenly Father, and also to our savior the Lord Jesus Christ. Christ himself was so perfect and humble, He made sure that people praised the LORD instead of man. The Lord instructed us that the Heavenly Father is good, and not to look to man as being "good," or worthy of following and putting confidence into (Matthew 19:16-17, Matthew 17:5, Matthew 23:8-11, Jeremiah 17:5, Micah 7:5-6, Romans 3:4, Jeremiah 9:4, etc.).
This is a constant theme and the LORD repeats these warnings throughout the bible, because one of man's MAJOR weaknesses is to exalt other men, and religion is one of the main ways in which man disobeys the LORD. Christianity, catholicism, mormonism, islam, jehovah's witnesses, buddhism or any other religion were never established by the LORD and Christ. We know this to be true because we do not find these religions, their teachings and doctrines to coincide with Christs' teachings, nor the laws and commandments in the bible. THIS IS OF THE UTMOST importance, because the bible itself lets us know that if man, religion or theories are not in agreement with the Lord's words, it is because it contains no light or truth.
Isaiah 8:20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. (Whether it is exalting a pope, priests, pastors or others that claim to represent the LORD ("ordained", saints, etc) observing society's holidays, collecting tithes, teaching fables like the Devil fell from heaven, etc., these are actions that prove they have NO LIGHT AND TRUTH in them. We must only trust in the LORD and His Son our Lord Christ!)
Matthew 17:4 Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias.
:5 While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.
(Christ has NO EQUAL: Acts 4:10-12, and the Most High set the record straight by unequivocally confirming that we should hear and obey Christ: Deuteronomy 18:18-19, Genesis 49:10, Psalms 2:7,11-12, etc. He exceeded any man, even righteous men.)
Job 32:22 For I know not to give flattering titles, in so doing my maker would soon take me away.
Jeremiah 17:5 Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
Romans 3:4 God forbid: yea, let God be true, and every man a liar; That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged. The LORD incessantly warns and reminds us to not "idolize" our fellow man, Nor trust in them, because we are brethren, brothers, and equals! As does our Lord Christ:
[We are Israelites and brethren, NOT TO BE inferior by tribe, NOR ANY OTHER blindness NOR titles to be superior to one another!]
Matthew 20:25 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.
:26 But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;
We are to deal respectfully, serve and help one another, but never to place any man, pastor or woman on a pedestal. In addition, when men or women seek that honor due to the Lord (Philippians 2:3, Galatians 5:26, etc.), especially when the LORD or Christ are in their conversation, it lacks the humility the LORD requires to be accepted of Him and to truly serve Him (James 3:13-18, Isaiah 57:15).
IPeter 5:3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being examples to the flock.
Matthew 23:2 Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:
(As if they are set up of the Lord as Moses was) :5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
:6 And love THE UPPERMOST rooms at feasts, and THE CHIEF SEATS in the synagogues,
:7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
:8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and ALL YE ARE BRETHREN.
:9 And CALL NO MAN your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
:10 NEITHER BE YE CALLED masters: FOR ONE is your Master, even Christ.
Isaiah 57:15 For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, WITH HIM ALSO that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
Moses who was exalted by the Lord, did not seek honor or to rule over men, but was very humble and meek:
Numbers 12:3 (Now the man Moses was VERY MEEK, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)
People also blindly trust in those that claim to follow the LORD or that present themselves as "religious" or "God-fearing" that are family members, parents, Popes, preachers, Deacons, Bishops, Priests and man, without verifying if the things they say or do are in agreement to the bible:
IJohn 4:1 Beloved, BELIEVE NOT every spirit, BUT TRY the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.