Is the christmas tree evil?


#1

**Is not the christmas tree the same tree that Jeremiah warns the Israelites NOT to get involved with?

Did not Ahab bring tree worship into Northern Israel?**

Jeremiah Chapter 10:
1
Hear the word which the LORD speaks to you, O house of Israel.
2
Thus says the LORD: Learn not the customs of the nations, and have no fear of the signs of the heavens, though the nations fear them.
3
** For the cult idols of the nations are nothing, wood cut from the forest, Wrought by craftsmen with the axe,
4
adorned with silver and gold. With nails and hammers they are fastened, that they may not totter.
5
Like a scarecrow in a cucumber field are they, they cannot speak; They must be carried about, for they cannot walk**. Fear them not, they can do no harm, neither is it in their power to do good.
6
No one is like you, O LORD, great are you, great and mighty is your name.
7
Who would not fear you, King of the nations, for it is your due! Among all the wisest of the nations, and in all their domain, there is none like you.
8
One and all they are dumb and senseless, these idols they teach about are wooden:
9
Silver strips brought from Tarshish, and gold from Ophir, The work of the craftsman and the handiwork of the smelter, Clothed with violet and purple- all of them the work of artisans.
11
Thus shall you say of them: Let the gods that did not make heaven and earth perish from the earth, and from beneath these heavens!
10
The LORD is true God,
1 Kings Chapter 16
30
Ahab, son of Omri, did evil in the sight of the LORD more than any of his predecessors.
31
It was not enough for him to imitate the sins of Jeroboam, son of Nebat. He even married Jezebel, daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians, and went over to the veneration and worship of Baal.
32
Ahab erected an altar to Baal in the temple of Baal which he built in Samaria,
33
and also made a sacred pole.
He did more to anger the LORD, the God of Israel, than any of the kings of Israel before him.

Source:

    New American Bible
    United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

November 11, 2002 Copyright © by United States Conference of Catholic Bishops


#2

your quote from 1 Kings Chapter 16 does not match what is in my Bible


#3

nccbuscc.org/nab/bible/jeremiah/jeremiah10.htm

nccbuscc.org/nab/bible/1kings/1kings16.htm


#4

I had a real tree that dropped needles all over the place long before Christmas… so yes, I do believe it was an evil tree.

My new artificial one is quite nice.

In all seriousness, those verses are talking about idols. So long as you don’t worship your Christmas tree, you’re fine.


#5

Christmas Tree: Isn’t there a reference to it in the Bible?

Many people may misunderstand the meaning of Jeremiah 10:1-5. Let’s explore what the Bible teaches concerning these verses. Please notice verses 3 and 4: “For the customs of the peoples are worthless; they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel. They adorn it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so it will not totter.” (NIV)
This Scripture refers to the making of a graven or carved image out of a tree trunk, as shown in verse 5: "Like a scarecrow in a melon patch, their idols cannot speak; they must be carried because they cannot walk. Do not fear them; they can do no harm nor can they do any good."
Later in the chapter false gods that have not made the earth are contrasted with the true God, the Creator (see verses 9-11). Images are vanity, and they shall perish (notice verses 14,15).
*The practice or “custom” of making an image from the trunk of a tree is also referred to in Isaiah 40:19,20 and 44:14-17. Both Isaiah and Jeremiah declare the futility and absurdity of making and worshipping idols. Part of the wood is used for fuel and the rest is worship. *
These Scriptures have no reference to Christmas trees.
en.bibleinfo.com/questions/question.html?id=738


#6

That’s odd… in all my life I have never ever seen a Catholic worship a tree.
Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum,


#7

Is anyone carrying around Christmas trees and worshipping them?

The answer of course is no.

Neither is the Virgin Mary the “queen of heaven” mentioned in the Old Testament.

But if people focus on a phrase, like “queen of heaven” and thus condemn the use of the phrase, they’re missing the point.

There IS a king of heaven–Christ Jesus. There IS a queen of heaven–Mary. The mother of a King is a queen and most specifically in Jewish tradition the ONLY woman who could be called queen was the mother of the King.

Thus, people who focus on a phrase like ‘silver and gold on a tree’ and condemn because of that any kind of decorations are also missing the point.

If God didn’t want ‘decoration’ then why was He so careful in his directions to make the Ark of the Covenant so RICH, so OSTENTATIOUS, so full of gold and precious metals, jewels, and fine needlework?

God is unchanging. If we were to use all possible resources of the earth to make the Ark most precious, then we are likewise to use all possible resources to make our churches, our homes, and above all our own SELVES to be as rich as possible to make A HOME FOR CHRIST.

Some of us may be very poor. . .so poor that the only thing we can make ‘rich’ is our interior soul, through the use of constant prayer. But think about this, my skeptical friend. . .

even though you might think ‘see, only poor and simple is the way to go’–that poor person is NOT going to say just ONE prayer. That poor person, if all he or she can give is prayer, is going to try to pray the very best he or she can; to pray as MUCH as he or she can.

If you personally don’t care for Christmas trees, you don’t have to have one. But you cannot condemn them or their use by your fellow Christians who use them, not as idols, but as a part of their wholehearted love and worship for God, in trying to offer to God as much beauty and honor and worship as they can.


#8

You mean you didn’t realize that in putting those earmuffs for Aunt Maude and the those cigars for Uncle Hiram under the Christmas tree you were really offering them to Baal??!! :eek: :smiley:


#9

According to some protestants Martin Luther began the tradition of decorating trees to celebrate Christmas. It’s surely a legend without strong evidences.

“One crisp Christmas Eve, about the year 1500, he was walking through snow-covered woods and was struck by the beauty of a group of small evergreens. Their branches, dusted with snow, shimmered in the moonlight. When he got home, he set up a little fir tree indoors so he could share this story with his children. He decorated it with candles, which he lighted in honor of Christ’s birth.”


#10

This passage from Jeremiah is referring about hand carved wood sculptures who became idols. It has nothing to do with the Christmas tree.

http://www.firstmoonexports.com/indian%20idols%20%20wood%20musical%20ganesha%20big.jpg
Ganesha playing the cymbals (Indian Idol)… Carved from a single block of wood.


#11

Jeremiah was probably referring to an idol as Asherah/Sherah.

http://www.abu.nb.ca/ecm/pictures/1998/sept.gif

Her figures were made of wood and she is associated with sacred trees/groves of trees. She is symbolized by a pole/tree found beside the altar in a Canaanite high place of idolatry. Asherah is depicted as an unshaped piece of wood or a naked, curly-haired goddess riding a lion and holding lilies and serpents. Her cult penetrated into Judah through Maachah (King Asa’s grandmother) and Israel through Jezebel. Manasseh placed a carved Asherah pole in the Jerusalem Temple.


#12

I’ve never seen a Christmas tree that looked like any of those things described or pictured. :slight_smile:


#13

If you are toting your Christmas tree around and worshipping it as an idol, cease and desist and once. For the rest of us who consider it a rather elaborate household decoration, do not be alarmed, as I rather doubt most people in our culture consider household decorations to be gods (although I am not too sure about how some people regard their televisions).


#14

No one can accidentally worship something. It can’t be done.

I have to ask the OP this question? Did you grow up with a Christmas tree and do you feel that your family was accidentally worshipping some forgotten God or Goddess?


#15

Annie – this is a great quote! Please know that I am going to shamelessly lift this from you!

Pax,
Joe


#16

There’s even a hymn to the Christmas tree!

“Oh, Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree…”

:rolleyes:


#17

Only when you can’t get them to stand up straight…

smileys.smileycentral.com/cat/8/8_2_73.gif

smileycentral.com/sig.jsp?pc=ZSzeb097&pp=ZNxdm801CJUS


#18

I found this paragraph quite easily with a simple google search under “Christmas tree and St. Boniface:”

The modern Christmas tree was likely born in the 8th century, when St. Boniface was converting the Germanic tribes. The tribes worshipped oak trees, decorating them for the winter solstice. St. Boniface cut down an enormous oak tree, that was central to the worship of a particular tribe, but a fir tree grew in its place. The evergreen was offered as a symbol of Christianity, which the newly converted Germans began decorating for Christmas.

Prince Albert, who was German, introduced the Christmas tree to England after his marriage to Queen Victoria in 1840. German immigrants to Pennsylvania brought Christmas trees to America.

As I recall, St. Boniface used the evergreen fir tree as both a symbol of the Trinity (because of its triangular shape) and of everlasting life in Christ, because evergreens do not lose their green color and do not appear to die in winter.


#19

Tabcom,

Hello and welcome to the Catholic Answers Forums. I hope you have a blessed and uplifting time here.

Something that comes to mind is Acts 10:15. Certainly tree worship was once an issue, but it isn’t any longer and thus the ancient prohibition no longer applies. If we were to start worshipping Christmas trees, I am sure that Mother Church would step in.

  • Liberian

#20

Did someone see me offering a sacrifice before I cut down my Christmas tree last year?
I thought that I was hidden from view
Actually, it wasn’t a burnt offering, it was a cup of hot cocoa, and it was steam coming off the top, not a sweet smelling oblation
Though, I did think that tree was evil when it tipped over in the stand one day.


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