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O HOW SHALL I KEEP MY CHRISTMAS?

“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God…[and] love thy neighbour as thyself.” Matthew 22:37-39

O how shall I keep my Christmas?”
As they keep it in heaven above;
O keep it with peace and thanksgiving,
And kindliest deed of love;
And share with the poor and needy
The joys which the Lord gives thee;
And thy heart shall keep with the angels
The Lord’s nativity.

“O how shall I keep my Christmas?”
My heart whispered softly to me,
For I had been reading the story
Of the Lord’s nativity;
And slowly and clearly before me
The words like pictures rise,
And the scenes appear in the beauty
Of the starry Syrian skies.

O cradled He was in a manger!
For lowly and poor was He,
Whose throne is the splendors of heaven
Whose pow’r is infinity;
And He bore His cross to save us,
To save us from death and sin,
And He trod all alone the winepress
To make us pure and clean.

In glory the hosts of the angels
Came singing His song of praise,
And filling the heav’ns with their music
In those wonderful old days;
Singing “Glory to God in the highest!”
And “peace upon earth,”
And the mighty chorus of voices
Pealed forth “Good will to all.”
Words: John West­all (1816-1890), in The Mag­ni­fi­cat (New York: The New-Church Press, 1910).
Music: John Wor­ces­ter (1834-1900)

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Wishing you and your loved ones a Happy Thanksgiving.
Wishing you and your loved ones

a Happy Thanksgiving.

 

 

 

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Christianity and the Dark Side—What about Halloween?

Wednesday • October 30, 2013

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Over a hundred years ago, the great Dutch theologian Herman Bavinck predicted that the 20th century would “witness a gigantic conflict of spirits.” His prediction turned out to be an understatement, and this great conflict continues into the 21st century.

The issue of Halloween presses itself annually upon the Christian conscience. Acutely aware of dangers new and old, many Christian parents choose to withdraw their children from the holiday altogether. Others choose to follow a strategic battle plan for engagement with the holiday. Still others have gone further, seeking to convert Halloween into an evangelistic opportunity. Is Halloween really that significant?

Well, Halloween is a big deal in the marketplace. Halloween is surpassed only by Christmas in terms of economic activity. Reporting in 2007, David J. Skal estimated: “Precise figures are difficult to determine, but the annual economic impact of Halloween is now somewhere between 4 billion and 6 billion dollars depending on the number and kinds of industries one includes in the calculations.” As of 2012, that total exceeded $8 billion.

Furthermore, historian Nicholas Rogers claims:

Halloween is currently the second most important party night in North America. In terms of its retail potential, it is second only to Christmas. This commercialism fortifies its significance as a time of public license, a custom-designed opportunity to have a blast. Regardless of its spiritual complications, Halloween is big business.

Rogers and Skal have each produced books dealing with the origin and significance of Halloween. Nicholas Rogers is author of Halloween: From Pagan Ritual to Party Night. Professor of History at York University in Canada, Rogers has written a celebration of Halloween as a transgressive holiday that allows the bizarre and elements from the dark side to enter the mainstream. Skal, a specialist on the culture of Hollywood, has written Death Makes a Holiday: A Cultural History of Halloween. Skal’s approach is more dispassionate and focused on entertainment, looking at the cultural impact of Halloween in the rise of horror movies and the nation’s fascination with violence.

The pagan roots of Halloween are well documented. The holiday is rooted in the Celtic festival of Samhain, which came at summer’s end. As Rogers explains, “Paired with the feast of Beltane, which celebrated the life-generating powers of the sun, Samhain beckoned to winter and the dark nights ahead.” Scholars dispute whether Samhain was celebrated as a festival of the dead, but the pagan roots of the festival are indisputable. Questions of human and animal sacrifices and various occultic sexual practices continue as issues of debate, but the reality of the celebration as an occultic festival focused on the changing of seasons undoubtedly involved practices pointing to winter as a season of death.

As Rogers comments: “In fact, the pagan origins of Halloween generally flow not from this sacrificial evidence, but from a different set of symbolic practices. These revolve around the notion of Samhain as a festival of the dead and as a time of supernatural intensity heralding the onset of winter.

How should Christians respond to this pagan background? Harold L. Myra of Christianity Today argues that these pagan roots were well known to Christians of the past:

More than a thousand years ago Christians confronted pagan rites appeasing the lord of death and evil spirits. Halloween’s unsavory beginnings preceded Christ’s birth when the druids, in what is now Britain and France, observed the end of summer with sacrifices to the gods. It was the beginning of the Celtic year and they believed Samhain, the lord of death, sent evil spirits abroad to attack humans, who could escape only by assuming disguises and looking like evil spirits themselves.

Thus, the custom of wearing costumes, especially costumes imitating evil spirits, is rooted in the Celtic pagan culture. As Myra summarizes, “Most of our Halloween practices can be traced back to the old pagan rites and superstitions.”

The complications of Halloween go far beyond its pagan roots, however. In modern culture, Halloween has become not only a commercial holiday, but a season of cultural fascination with evil and the demonic. Even as the society has pressed the limits on issues such as sexuality, the culture’s confrontation with the “dark side” has also pushed far beyond boundaries honored in the past.

As David J. Skal makes clear, the modern concept of Halloween is inseparable from the portrayal of the holiday presented by Hollywood. As Skal comments, “The Halloween machine turns the world upside down. One’s identity can be discarded with impunity. Men dress as women, and vice versa. Authority can be mocked and circumvented, and, most important, graves open and the departed return.”

This is the kind of material that keeps Hollywood in business. “Few holidays have a cinematic potential that equals Halloween’s,” comments Skal. “Visually, the subject is unparalleled, if only considered in terms of costume design and art direction. Dramatically, Halloween’s ancient roots evoke dark and melodramatic themes, ripe for transformation into film’s language of shadow and light.”

But television’s “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” (which debuted in 1966) has given way to Hollywood’s “Halloween” series and the rise of violent “slasher” films. Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff have been replaced by Michael Myers and Freddy Kruger.

This fascination with the occult comes as America has been sliding into post-Christian secularism. While the courts remove all theistic references from America’s public square, the void is being filled with a pervasive fascination with evil, paganism, and new forms of occultism.

In addition to all this, Halloween has become downright dangerous in many neighborhoods. Scares about razor blades hidden in apples and poisoned candy have spread across the nation in recurring cycles. For most parents, the greater fear is the encounter with occultic symbols and the society’s fascination with moral darkness.

For this reason, many families withdraw from the holiday completely. Their children do not go trick-or-treating, they wear no costumes, and they attend no parties related to the holiday. Some churches have organized alternative festivals, capitalizing on the holiday opportunity, but turning the event away from pagan roots and the fascination with evil spirits. For others, the holiday presents no special challenges at all.

These Christians argue that the pagan roots of Halloween are no more significant than the pagan origins of Christmas and other church festivals. Without doubt, the church has progressively Christianized the calendar, seizing secular and pagan holidays as opportunities for Christian witness and celebration. Anderson M. Rearick, III argues that Christians should not surrender the holiday. As he relates, “I am reluctant to give up what was one of the highlights of my childhood calendar to the Great Imposter and Chief of Liars for no reason except that some of his servants claim it as his.”

Nevertheless, the issue is a bit more complicated than that. While affirming that make-believe and imagination are part and parcel of God’s gift of imagination, Christians should still be very concerned about the focus of that imagination and creativity. Arguing against Halloween is not equivalent to arguing against Christmas. The old church festival of “All Hallow’s Eve” is by no means as universally understood among Christians as the celebration of the incarnation at Christmas.

Christian parents should make careful decisions based on a biblically-informed Christian conscience. Some Halloween practices are clearly out of bounds. Others may be strategically transformed, but this takes hard work and may meet with mixed success.

The coming of Halloween is a good time for Christians to remember that evil spirits are real and that the Devil will seize every opportunity to trumpet his own celebrity. Perhaps the best response to the Devil at Halloween is that offered by Martin Luther, the great Reformer: “The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him for he cannot bear scorn.”

On October 31, 1517, Martin Luther began the Reformation with a declaration that the church must be recalled to the authority of God’s Word and the purity of biblical doctrine. With this in mind, the best Christian response to Halloween might be to scorn the Devil and then pray for the Reformation of Christ’s church on earth. Let’s put the dark side on the defensive.

ALBERT MOHLER

http://www.albertmohler.com/2013/10/30/christianity-and-the-dark-side-what-about-halloween-5/

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HALLOWEEN SARBATOARE PAGANA, DEMONICA, ANTICRISTICA

 

  

    CRESTINII NOSTRI  mai putin dusi la Biserica serbeaza pe 31 octombrie  Halloween-ul (acesta fiind al doilea import in materie de sarbatori, dupa celebrul de pe acum Valentine’s Day). Multi considera ca sarbatoarea Haloween-ului (All Hallow’s Eve) este doar seara (ajunul) de dinaintea Zilei tuturor sfintilor (All Saint’s Day), praznicul romano-catolic din 1 noiembrie. Americanii isi amintesc acum de mortii lor, celebreaza victoria lui Hristos asupra mortii si puterilor intunericului, rad de… rau si de moarte. Se considera, deci, ca este sarbatoare crestina chiar daca e importata, dupa toate probabilitatile, din paganismul celt (druid). Greu insa de convins un om rational ca aceasta sarbatoare ar avea duh crestinesc…
 Adevarul e insa altul. Ea e o sarbatoare 100% pagana, oculta, “ziua cand mortii, fantasmele parasesc mormintele…”. Ea e cea mai mare sarbatoare a slujitorilor satanei: vrajitori, spiritisti sau satanisti. Americanii au dezvoltat o adevarata industrie legata de aceasta sarbatoare. Se achizitioneaza cu aceasta ocazie accesorii macabre: masti, costume de vampiri, diavoli, dragoni, zombi, leprosi, schelete si nelipsitii dovleci, ajungandu-se pana la vanzari de o jumatate de miliard de dolari anual. Vanzarile filmelor horror cresc in aceasta perioada, promotorii filmelor de groaza speculand si ei interesul mare pentru acest praznic. Industria filmelor horror exploateaza la maxim setea de senzatii tari, dovedind nepasare fata de psihicul omului, caruia nu-i ofera nimic altceva decat angoase.
 America face cu ocazia Halloween-ului pregatiri mai mari decat de Craciun sau Paste. Copii se costumeaza in stil horror, se amuza prin sperieturi si merg (colinda) din casa in casa pentru a primi prajituri. Tinerii, mai curajosi, merg in cimitire in miez de noapte si se distreaza facand spiritism. S-a constatat ca in noaptea Halloween-ului se savarsesc foarte multe crime in Statele Unite.
 De altfel, in cunoscutul documentar TV Invazia pagana se spunea ca la intrebarea “Cum ati vrea sa serbati Halloween-ul?”, 80% din elevii americani de clasa a IV-a de la o scoala au raspuns zambind : “As vrea sa omor pe cineva…” Acesta este impactul sarbatorii !

 Biserica, adica noi, madularele ei vii, nu trebuie sa luam parte la aceasta sarbatoare oribila si demonica.

 

Demonica
Demonica (Photo credit: rustman)

 

 Sursa: http://ro.altermedia.info/opinii/halloween-ul-o-sarbatoare-de-care-nu-avem-nevoie_2918.html
Un raspuns la postare

 

Multumesc foarte mult, aveti multa dreptate, cred ca multi americani nu isi dau seama de faptul ca se joaca cu niste spirite si duhuri necurate, Deavolul este real si puterea lui este  la fel de reala si nu ar trebui luate in bataie de joc si nici in gluma. La noi in Africa oameni se ingrozesc si sunt infricosati numai sa se vorbeasca de Satanism si vrajitori ,,,,se stie destul de bine puterea lui satan.

 

  Multumesc frumos!
Domnul sa va binecuvinteze pe deplin!
Cu multa dragoste!
Maria Halip

 

ATENTIE – Sarbatoarea de Halloween este o Sarbatoare Demonica; Satanica. Invazia demonica. Partea 1 / 4

Invazia Pagana, Episodul 1:
Halloween – Capcana sau Amuzament ?

Partile documentarului:

Partea 1:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QwOzHzO_8lg

Partea 2:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W09mvls3GbQ

Partea 3:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSHEKNDJmQM

Partea 4:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ruZGrrx1w-g

 

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GQ-QOTW_01

Question: “What sort of New Year’s Resolution should a Christian make?”

Answer: The practice of making New Year’s resolutions goes back over 3,000 years to the ancient Babylonians. There is just something about the start of a new year that gives us the feeling of a fresh start and a new beginning. In reality, there is no difference between December 31 and January 1. Nothing mystical occurs at midnight on December 31. The Bible does not speak for or against the concept of New Year’s resolutions. However, if a Christian determines to make a New Year’s resolution, what kind of resolution should he or she make? Common New Year’s resolutions are commitments to quit smoking, to stop drinking, to manage money more wisely, and to spend more time with family. By far, the most common New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, in conjunction with exercising more and eating more healthily. These are all good goals to set. However, 1 Timothy 4:8 instructs us to keep exercise in perspective: “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” The vast majority of New Year’s resolutions, even among Christians, are in relation to physical things. This should not be. Many Christians make New Year’s resolutions to pray more, to read the Bible every day, and to attend church more regularly. These are fantastic goals. However, these New Year’s resolutions fail just as often as the non-spiritual resolutions, because there is no power in a New Year’s resolution. Resolving to start or stop doing a certain activity has no value unless you have the proper motivation for stopping or starting that activity. For example, why do you want to read the Bible every day? Is it to honor God and grow spiritually, or is it because you have just heard that it is a good thing to do? Why do you want to lose weight? Is it to honor God with your body, or is it for vanity, to honor yourself? Philippians 4:13 tells us, “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.” John 15:5 declares, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” If God is the center of your New Year’s resolution, it has chance for success, depending on your commitment to it. If it is God’s will for something to be fulfilled, He will enable you to fulfill it. If a resolution is not God honoring and/or is not in agreement in God’s Word, we will not receive God’s help in fulfilling the resolution. So, what sort of New Year’s resolution should a Christian make? Here are some suggestions: (1) pray to the Lord for wisdom (James 1:5) in regards to what resolutions, if any, He would have you make; (2) pray for wisdom as to how to fulfill the goals God gives you; (3) rely on God’s strength to help you; (4) find an accountability partner who will help you and encourage you; (5) don’t become discouraged with occasional failures; instead, allow them to motivate you further; (6) don’t become proud or vain, but give God the glory. Psalm 37:5-6 says, “Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.”

Recommended Resource: Read the Bible in One Year.


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UN SINGUR MIJLOCITOR

1 TIMOTEI 2:5

Caci este un singur Dumnezeu si este un singur mijlocitor intre Dumnezeu si oameni: Omul Isus Hristos,

UN SINGUR MANTUITOR

FAPTE 4:12

In nimeni altul nu este mantuire: caci nu este sub cer niciun alt Nume dat oamenilor in care trebuie sa fim mantuiti.”

UN SINGUR  SI UNIC FIU

IOAN 3:16

Fiindca atat de mult a iubit Dumnezeu lumea, ca a dat pe singurul Lui Fiu, pentru ca oricine crede in El sa nu piara, ci sa aiba viata vesnica.

Dragii nostrii

Craciunul are farmec, doar daca este sarbatorit Domnul Isus.

 Va dorim Sarbatori Fericite si multa binecuvantare!

  Tot odată la finalul anului 2012 vă dorim  binecuvântarea Domnului şi pentru anul care vine. Nu ştim ce ne aşteaptă, dar vă dorim putere de a merge mai departe, sănătate, împlinire şi bucurie!

La mulţi ani sarbatoriti  în Lumină!

IN LUMINA FETEI LUI CHRISTOS A CARUI NASTERE O SARBATORIM ACUM

Dear beloved in Christ,

I would like to pray that you will have an extremely blessed Christmas season filled with CHRIST.

  Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’ Mat 1:23 May He be always with you and yours-

If you know He is the God who is with us,

then be the person in whom others see as being with Him! 

Merry Christmas!282920_483270135057806_653159942_nISAIA 9:6

Caci un Copil ni S-a nascut, un Fiu ni S-a dat, si domnia va fi pe umarul Lui; Il vor numi: “Minunat, Sfetnic, Dumnezeu tare, Parintele vesniciilor, Domn al pacii.”

http://www.jacquielawson.com/preview.asp?cont=1&hdn=0&pv=3274600&path=83563

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THE ODES OF CHRISTMAS

Would you like to know how the first Christians worshiped? IWhat did they sing before there were Christmas carols? For the first time in 2000 years, the first Christian hymns...

• Listen to this series

12.18.12

Tuesday

THE ODES OF CHRISTMAS
[ PART 2 ]

What did Christians sing before there were Christmas carols? These ancient hymns date back to a time when the Apostle John would have been worshiping. Hear what they may have sounded like.

Listen | Send to a Friend| Order a copy on CD

  12.17.12

Monday

THE ODES OF CHRISTMAS
[ PART 1 ]

Would you like to know how the first Christians worshiped? What did they sing before there were Christmas carols? For the first time in 2000 years, the first Christian hymns have been set to music.

Listen | Send to a Friend| Order a copy on CD

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