I heard an atheist on TV the other day, insist that the Holiday called Christmas by many was really a worship of the solstice, when the shortest day of the year is past and the days begin to lengthen. She kept insisting, “There is no God, it’s just the winter solstice.” She never really got around to explaining how she could prove that there wasn’t a God, but she was quite implacable. However, she was right that in the northern countries of Europe, the ancient peoples did worship the return of the sun, not only with Yule logs and bonfires, but often with human sacrifice. This is why even today many Christians do not like to associate with the Christmas season.
However, rightly or wrongly, the Church introduced the holy day of Christmas or “Christ Sent”, in order to help guide the people away from worship of inanimate objects like the sun, and lead them instead to worship the Creator of the sun, moon, and all the rest of the universe. And while the athiests (a pagan religion) are becoming more and more agressive about having other peoples holidays banned from public display, many of us still choose this time of the year to celebrate the coming of our Savior. In this spirit, I’m putting up the “Christmas Story” as it was written in the original Tyndale translation. It was in this translation that the English first heard the story directly from the Bible in their own language.
PS: I wasn’t drunk with holiday spirits when I wrote this, the English language has changed a little in 500 years…
And it chaunced in thoose dayes: that ther went oute a commaundment from Auguste the Emperour, that all the woorlde shuld be taxed. And this taxynge was the fyrst and executed when Syrenius was leftenaunt in Syria. And every man went vnto his awne citie to be taxed. And Ioseph also ascended from Galile, oute of a cite called Naxareth, into Iurie: vnto the cite of David which is called Bethleem, because he was out of the housse and linage of David, to be taxed with Mary his spoused wyfe which was with chylde.
And it fortuned whyll they were there, her tyme was come that she shuld be delyvered. And she brought forth her fyrst begotten sonne, and wrapped him in swadlynge cloothes, and layed him in a manger, because ther was no roume for them within in th ynne.
And ther were in the same region shepherdes abydinge in the felde and watching their flocke by nyght. And loo: the angell of the lorde stode harde by them, and the brightnes of the lorde shone rounde aboute them, and they were soore afrayed. But the angell sayd vnto them: be not afrayed. For beholde, I bring you tydinges of greate ioye that shal come to all the people: for vnto you is borne this daye in the cite of David, a saveoure which is Christ the lorde. And take this for a signe: ye shall fynde the chylde swadled and layed in a manger. And streight waye ther was with the angell a multitude of hevenly sowdiers, laudynge God and sayinge: Glory to God an hye, and peace on the erth: and vnto men reioysynge.
And it fortuned, assone as the angels were gone awaye from them in to heven, the shepherdes sayd one to another: let vs goo even vnto Bethleem, and se this thynge that is hapened with the Lorde hath shewed vnto vs. And they cam with haste, and founde Mary and Ioseph and the babe layde in a manger. And when they had sene it, they publisshed a brode the sayinge which was tolde them of that chylde. And all that hearde it, wondred at those thinges which were tolde them of the shepherdes. But Mary kept all thoose sayinges, and pondered them in hyr hert. And the shepherdes retourned, praysinge and laudinge God for all that they had herde and sene, evyn as it was told vnto them.
Merry Christmas, to those who keep it, and to those that don’t, have a great day….