Merry Christmas Seems to Me


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We celebrate the birth of unquestionably the most important person in His-story perhaps in the wrong month, maybe even in the wrong season, and with arguably some pretty inappropriate behaviors these days. At least we recognize Him in part. Some wish - some even say that may come to an end in modern America. I doubt it.

His Hope is Eternal

Like you I have contact with people in public places – restaurants, stores, gas stations, etc.
This time of year it has become politically correct for employees to officially employ the more generic, “Happy Holidays” greeting.
I get it – officially the companies don’t want to offend a potential customer.

Forgive them Father. They know not what they do.
I kindly, but firmly, look them directly in the eye and say, “Merry Christmas to you!”
About 95% of the time people smile (it appears to me with some relief) and reply, “Merry Christmas”.

It appears to me many of us really do not wish to lose the Joy that is the reason for the season even if we may want to forego the personal accountability that His Hope also includes.
People don’t want to be found to be naughty.
People want to be found to be nice.
Of course, nice is not the issue.

The War on Christmas

Contrary to the belief of many these days, the War on Christmas has been going on long before the day of Jesus’ birth. Technically, the attack on Him has been going on since before there was a beginning. Specifically, we are here because of Him.

The ongoing fact of that visible and audible struggle alone may make us consider there’s something more going on here. Maybe not, if you believe it’s all about Religion and not about Faith? Religion and Faith are indeed related.
They far from the same thing.

Why should the birth of one child proclaimed as the Prince of Peace generate such conflict?
That’s simple.

God as the Son of man is as Controversial as Hell

We all have heard the Christmas Story. All of us must also acknowledge that story is not the same as Santa’s, Rudolf’s, the Grinch’s, or even Bilbo’s tale of his own Unexpected Journey.

We hear it reported that 95% of Americans believe in the existence of a God. That number has fallen in the last decade. In Europe that percentage of the population is far smaller. Why? Many western Europeans have both good intellectual and emotional reasons for this based on a lot of post event historical indoctrination to the demonstrably devastating events of the 20th century.

As I have written earlier in The Sophistry of the Secular post, it’s my opinion that the governmental State coupled to secular religion is indeed a nasty, blood thirsty beast - The Terror that none of us want to come to town.

All too often the Christian Church takes the rap for the crimes of that other institution – the State.
There should be no surprise there. That historical change of narrative effort is quite intentional.
Accusation can be as effective as Hell.

False public accusation about the assumed intentions of others is easy to do. The result is more vain belief in the ability and power of the State and often less belief in the power of our personal Faith to change the real lives of men and women.


The State is guaranteed to fail. To maintain its power the State must focus its attentions on the expectations of its all too human and morally frail constituency - us. The State is impersonal, uncaring, and notably concerned with the application of physical power and force both by definition and as a matter of practical necessity.

An institution (the State) must be focused on the actualization of plans of man. An institution is constrained and limited by our expectation driven, human perception.

He is Not

The US Constitution clearly recognizes this built-in human limitation in all worldly governance. That document severely and intentionally limits and fragments the powers of the State for that exact reason. The powers of the State are purposefully derived from the active participation of its citizenry via representation.

A Tyranny of Democracy?

We in the US do not live in a democracy as many like to spin it around election times.
Why they say that is probably deserves a post.

In these United States we are governed by a representative Republic. The democratic will of the people is viewed by the Constitution to be as just as dangerous, fickle, and potentially tyrannical as a State in any other form. Our vote in any election is therefore only part of the process.

Intentionally, an election is not the entire process.

Some May Win But…

The Constitution unquestionably also states and recognizes that there is Power above the State and any of its designs and/or policies. That power is acknowledged to be Devine and confirmed upon all individuals. It is not within the powers of the State, in any of its legal forms, to define that Creator. The State also may not remove or confer rights from or to individuals. Only Constitutional amendments do that.

Within our Bill of Rights the federal State is specifically precluded from joining itself with any specific institutionalized religion. These articles very specifically do not preclude any religious or faith-based forms of participation in any or all State related activities. Obviously, that would be and is humanly impossible. No citizen would able to legally participate in any State related activity.

Separation of Church and State

This oft used and quoted phrase is not employed anywhere in our country’s penultimate legal documents. A separation of church and state is in effect backwards from the stated intent.
The State must be separated, confined, and limited.
This does not function the other way around.

Why is this phrase today a truth in popular culture?
The answer is simple…

The modern State has adopted a religion and actively seeks to exclude all others.

The modern Federal government, many State governments, and many local governments have broken the essential and primary rule stated in their written Constitutions and joined themselves to an institutionalized religion.

This religion is Secular Humanism.

“Wait a minute.
There are no buildings on our street corners devoted to secular humanism.
Isn’t secular humanism, by definition, non-religious?”

There are indeed erections aplenty.
Perhaps we do not see them for what they are?

As to the second point…
Every moral philosophy (even an amoral philosophy) is a religion.
A moral philosophy defines a way of thinking and therefore of decision making.
To say that we are not religious cannot and does not make the statement a fact.

In America each citizen has the free will to choose, freely associate with whom we please, etc.

In our country the State is precluded from excluding, confining, and/or even defining religion. These requirements do not demand a secular or non-religious State - far from it.

The State must be Inclusive not Exclusive

This truth is notably upside down from the common popular belief and the ongoing political argument.
There are reasons for that as I pointed out above.

Government without the acknowledgement of a Devine above the power of the State and the individual is, by definition, a usurpation of that ultimate authority by that State.

On this point at least, almost all the religions in the world agree save one.
Perhaps you guessed it – humanism.

The Great Satan

You might be surprised that I believe that I understand why the Ayatollahs call the US the “Great Satan”. It’s not because we are a Christian nation contrary to most common group think and speak.
The Islamic clerics know our society and culture is demonstrably secular and not Christian.
They understand that may be worse.

To believe in the principals of humanism is to be essentially godless – you must, in the end, deny God himself. You may quibble over the specific details of the humanist moral philosophy, but as a humanist you believe you, and you alone, do the choosing.

I clearly do not believe in the Islamic cleric’s stated solution to the problem – the religious state.

Aside from the nasty historical evidence of the human managed religious state idea, I simply chose to side with Jesus and understand it’s about personal accountability and the genuine liberty to govern ourselves and to not farm out the job of overcoming in this life to others.

Strange Bedfellows

The secular State and the secular religion of humanism both agree that any other religion is, at the very least, an obstacle to their goal of power over all. Both are collectivist and activist by necessity. You may remember this famous quote from Star Trek movies…

“The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few...or the one.”

Therefore, any other form of religion is essentially evil, or rather, ignorant in the eyes of both the State and the philosophy of humanism by implication.
Your philosophy or religion must agree with them, or it is, by definition, wrong and stupid.

To claim moral superiority in any form is a religious act.

I hope the duplicity of the common secular argument is a bit more obvious at this point.

A Short Peek at History

Historically, these two institutions found many willing secular coconspirators to work with throughout the last century. There are many more of them today in America.
These alliances of mutual self-service supplanted many existing religious, ethnic, and cultural mutual aid societies and institutions across a wide spectrum of society.

These often uneasy alliances created some rather strange bedfellows. The labor movements and institutional academic and scientific groups joined together to seize effective control of many governmentally funded institutions both in the US and Europe.

These mutual self-service aid efforts proved to be very profitable to all the concerned. They very effectively collected participants. You are encouraged to go back and follow the money.

Their strategy was and remains remarkable simple:

  • Take credit for all good things and ideas (many have absolutely nothing to do with the State or any actual Institutional efforts)
  • Mutually certify one another as experts and/or as standards setters where and whenever possible
  • Reaffirm continuously that everyone else is uneducated, ignorant, prejudiced, and bigoted from their morally superior viewpoint.
  • Employ other people’s resources wherever and whenever possible and get them by any means necessary
  • Accuse anyone or everyone else for all the obvious and notable failures of their plans

Listed on paper these are horrific moral behaviors.
It certainly is not “Love your brother as yourself”.
No wonder these people don’t want the Ten Commandments anywhere near anything they say or do.

Their revised Rule of Law becomes defined by:

  • Nebulously undefined good intentions
  • Grand promises of future accomplishment
  • A systematic distribution of any available or potential resources to the mutual self-service powers with limited or no accountability

Unquestionably, public educational systems and the content that those institutions delivered was the primary focus of much of the intellectual, physical, and financial efforts of the modern secular and humanist movements throughout the last century. The effort was most successful in the social democracies of Western Europe that had been decimated by the two world wars.

Historically, in Europe almost all the existing governments sponsored specific religious institutions that were in effect strongly coupled to social class and income structures that the Industrial Revolution and the Great Wars changed forever. This made those religious institutions simple and easy targets to accuse, disenfranchise, and replace with secularized and socialized institutions controlled and managed by the institutions and their unionized bureaucracies.

In the US effects of the ongoing secular alliance and effort in education and other non-governmental institutions were mitigated by the Constitutional statues and, in part, by the Cold War and the much more fractured nature of the religious institutions in America. To all Christian denominations (mostly made up of a more prosperous American middle class) modern Marxist socialism appeared an obvious enemy.

Pay No Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain

The philosophy of secular humanism has proven to be the much more challenging and destructive foe for the American Church in all its forms. The actual reasons for that are simple and painfully personal. One might say it was and remains an act of His Devine Judgment on us.

Secular Humanism loves to adopt all the nice good sounding stuff, make grand promises, claim victory, and promises to help us dodge all the personal accountability that an active Faith demands.

“We believe in feeding the poor, healing the sick, saving the planet yada yada yada…
We handle that for you.
Please text to 666 in the next ten minutes to make a donation.
This ad is sponsored by the National Council of Self-Important Charities.
Visit our website at blah
Enjoy the music and Happy Holidays!”

What they don’t tell you is:
YOU miss out on the blessing of YOU doing what YOU are supposed to do.

“Damn it. How am I supposed to figure out what I am supposed to do in the first place?”

How did Bilbo Baggins put it,
“Be careful when you step out your door. The Road will sweep you away.”

Perhaps we have a little more insight as to why secular humanism is so difficult for the modern church to deal with. Let me end this post with a telling quote that we all know.

“Peace on Earth and Good Will Toward Men”

I laugh hysterically when I see this partial quote from Scripture on Christmas cards.
This is part of a longer blessing in Scripture.
It has a serious backside warning that Jesus is all too clear about.

First off – the Peace (or Shalom) we’re talking about here as nothing to do with the lack of conflict, the absence of pain and suffering, or even the chance of our untimely death.
From a Faith-based perspective in Christ - We are already dead.
Jesus did not get off the hook literally.
We, sure as there is a Hell, will not either.
Are we in the game or not? Life is played for keeps.

We bear witness to Him or we don’t.
The blessing is a command to action - to overcome in the now.
There is no passive presumption in it at all.

…Who Know Him

Second - the full text of this blessing (usually omitted these days so as not to offend) is to those who Know Him.
It most certainly is not a blessing of worldly peace to everyone who does not.
As Winnie the Pooh says, “Oh. Bother.”

The little humanist in all of us says,
That can’t be fair. God can’t mean that.

Fear not.

The War on Christmas is all about who has Authority in the real world.
As for me, I dimly understand the key points of this post - A Helping of Turkey Day.
I know the unexpected.
God bet on Him and then He on us.
Who am I to disagree?

Happy Holidays

By the way, aren’t we all still telling each other to rejoice in the “Holy Days” without knowing what we are really saying?
Nah…He couldn’t do that.

I published this What Are They Thinking (WATT) post to this blog a decade ago this month. Funny thing. It required no corrections and next to no edits or updates except to clarify the arguments perhaps better.