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    Rickster

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    Santa good or evil

    Post  Rickster on December 15th 2010, 12:36 am

    One of my Facebook friends who I debate alot with (usually about things of fantasy and what is it right Christians read watch etc it)and we ended up debating about Santa Clause and he thinks Christians shouldn't have anything to do with Santa cause he's an "idol" and I think that while I agree that Santa seems to get more attention then Christ at Christmas. As long you teach your kids the true story of Christmas getting your kids pictures with Santa or seeing a movie about Santa is just harmless fun.

    what are your guys thoughts?

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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Paeter on December 15th 2010, 12:56 pm

    Rickster wrote:One of my Facebook friends who I debate alot with (usually about things of fantasy and what is it right Christians read watch etc it)and we ended up debating about Santa Clause and he thinks Christians shouldn't have anything to do with Santa cause he's an "idol" and I think that while I agree that Santa seems to get more attention then Christ at Christmas. As long you teach your kids the true story of Christmas getting your kids pictures with Santa or seeing a movie about Santa is just harmless fun.

    what are your guys thoughts?

    I tend to agree. There is no hard and fast rule about this that has to be the same for everyone. Biblically, I think if you can bring Santa into the picture in a harmless way and still fully honor God, there's no problem. After all, as I've been discussing in another thread, Jesus never even asked us to celebrate his birthday. (See Romans 14 for teaching about holidays.)

    I plan to introduce Santa to my kids as he was historically. A man who loved Jesus and cared for children, who we have fun making up fantasy stories and games (like stockings) about today.


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  WhiteBoy on December 15th 2010, 1:09 pm

    I agree with you. We just try to be careful in what we emphasize. Whenever my kids start talking about Santa and what they are gonna get for Christmas, etc. I try to remind them to not be greedy, that it's about what we give vs. what we get, and remind them of why we give gifts to other people at Christmas.



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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Rickster on December 15th 2010, 5:20 pm

    He says that we should avoid all idols even if we don't worship them. Which I think idols are a mater of each persons heart and everybody has one. But I brought the point that with his logic that would mean we shouldn't have Mary and Joseph in our Nativity scenes becasue they Cathloics pary and worship them.

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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  ProfessorAlan on December 16th 2010, 11:37 am

    we were not an Anti-Santa family, we were a Non-Santa family.

    My problem was lying to my daughter, as well as the practical complications of tricking her into believing that THIS invisible being who she can't see but keeps track of her and wants to bless her turns out to be a lie, while teaching her simultaneously that there is ANOTHER invisible being who she can't see but who keeps track of her and wants to bless her whi is actually real. Seemed impractical at best, really troublesome at worse for her forging a relationship with us and with God.

    We do display a few Santas as Christmas decorations in the house, but they are more of the "Father Christmas" or "Saint Nicholas" variety, than the fat jolly guy in the red suit.

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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 16th 2010, 12:20 pm

    Here's why our church doesn't have anything to do with Santa/Christmas.

    First the santa picture is a pretty crazy mockery of God himself if you look really closely.

    Santa says "ho ho ho" in a lighthearted manner, but whenever it is used in the old testament it means "take heed" as in "Ho, ho, look out, etc."

    Santa wears red, so does God.

    Santa has white hair and a beard, so does God.

    Santa flies through the sky in a "chariot" (God has been known to do this also)

    God rewards those that are good, and punishes those that are bad. With Coal none the less... (creepy)

    Santa knows if you're naughty or nice.

    So to me Santa is a big mockery of God. Just teach your kids about God and let's forget santa Wink
    Plus Santa has all kinds of roots in pagan traditions, why would we want to celebrate/partake in pagan traditions?


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Nathan James Norman on December 16th 2010, 1:24 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:Here's why our church doesn't have anything to do with Santa/Christmas.

    First the santa picture is a pretty crazy mockery of God himself if you look really closely.

    Santa says "ho ho ho" in a lighthearted manner, but whenever it is used in the old testament it means "take heed" as in "Ho, ho, look out, etc."

    Santa wears red, so does God.

    Santa has white hair and a beard, so does God.

    Santa flies through the sky in a "chariot" (God has been known to do this also)

    God rewards those that are good, and punishes those that are bad. With Coal none the less... (creepy)

    Santa knows if you're naughty or nice.

    So to me Santa is a big mockery of God. Just teach your kids about God and let's forget santa Wink
    Plus Santa has all kinds of roots in pagan traditions, why would we want to celebrate/partake in pagan traditions?

    Just a counter-point to ponder:

    1. Santa is a benevolent character.

    2. Santa is generous.

    3. Santa is a father-figure.

    The culture understands this character of Santa to be a benevolent, generous, loving father-figure. When Christians voice their opposition to this figure they don’t hear or understand that for some Santa could become an idol. What they hear is Christians saying that they oppose benevolent, generous and loving father-figures, which doesn’t compute because Christians are supposed to support those sort of things.

    So at best our culture looks at Christians and are totally confused. At worst we look crazy.

    So instead of looking at Santa like this:



    Perhaps we should see him like this:


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  WhiteBoy on December 16th 2010, 3:38 pm


    Santa wears red, so does God.

    Santa has white hair and a beard, so does God.

    Santa flies through the sky in a "chariot" (God has been known to do this also)

    I think I'm getting your point on this, but just had to point out that God doesn't wear red, doesn't have hair or a beard, and doesn't fly in a chariot. Smile He's a spirit, which means he has no physical body...other than when he was incarnate as Jesus.

    Alan and Nathan both make excellent points. Alan makes me reconsider my position even. So far, we have approached the existence of Santa as a "neither confirm nor deny." I won't lie to my kids, but so far have been able to avoid the direct questions of "is Santa real?". We have fun with it, but one day will probably end up telling them that Santa is really just Momma and Daddy.


    Last edited by WhiteBoy on December 16th 2010, 3:44 pm; edited 1 time in total


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 16th 2010, 3:41 pm

    I could give you the scriptures if you want... but it'll take some time.

    There's also examples of pagans cutting down fir trees, and "decking" them (I mean it literally says that) and it just shows how God actually hates this kind of thing.


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  WhiteBoy on December 16th 2010, 3:55 pm

    I could give you the scriptures if you want... but it'll take some time.

    While I do see your point on the others, these are the ones I don't see. I would be interested in the scriptures with these descriptions of God. Thanks.


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 16th 2010, 3:55 pm

    Okay... give me a second.


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 16th 2010, 4:11 pm

    I used this site as a quick reference for some of the things I'm claiming.

    I found the white beard in there.

    Code:
    Revelation 1:13-15
    13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.
    14 His head and his hairs [BEARD] were white like wool, as white as snow;. . . .


    Here's where God is wearing red...

    Code:
    Isaiah 63:1-2
    1 Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength? I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save.
    2 Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat?



    Revelation 19:11
    11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
    12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
    13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

    And then off the top of my head... examples of God flying would be Ezekiel's wheel. You know the story in Ezekiel 10...

    Here's an example of god saying Ho, Ho


    Code:

    Zechariah 2:6
    Ho, ho, come forth, and flee from the land of the north, saith the LORD. . .

    Here's some examples of Christmas trees.


    Code:

    JEREMIAH 10:

    Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.


    Jer 10:3 For the customs of the people [are] vain: for [one] cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.

    Jer 10:4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.

    Want any more stuff?


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  WhiteBoy on December 16th 2010, 4:31 pm

    Not for me; that gives me some things to check out. Thanks again.


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 16th 2010, 4:33 pm

    Hey no problem man cheers


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Rickster on December 17th 2010, 8:50 pm

    OK sort of off topic but I should have called this Santa: Naughty or Nice

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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Paeter on December 18th 2010, 6:07 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:Here's why our church doesn't have anything to do with Santa/Christmas.

    First the santa picture is a pretty crazy mockery of God himself if you look really closely.

    Santa says "ho ho ho" in a lighthearted manner, but whenever it is used in the old testament it means "take heed" as in "Ho, ho, look out, etc."

    Santa wears red, so does God.

    Santa has white hair and a beard, so does God.

    Santa flies through the sky in a "chariot" (God has been known to do this also)

    God rewards those that are good, and punishes those that are bad. With Coal none the less... (creepy)

    Santa knows if you're naughty or nice.

    So to me Santa is a big mockery of God. Just teach your kids about God and let's forget santa Wink
    Plus Santa has all kinds of roots in pagan traditions, why would we want to celebrate/partake in pagan traditions?

    I'm having trouble building a consistent framework from which to judge popular culture here. Can you help me see how any of these parallels are intentional or could be used as evidence that Santa Clause is a mockery of God? My mind has to bend backward a bit to get there.

    For example:

    Super Mario wears red, has facial hair, can call fire down on his enemies and is in the business of rescuing. Is Super Mario a mockery of God?


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 20th 2010, 10:05 am

    I asked my friend and this is what he said.

    1 John 2:21 says
    New International Version (©1984)
    I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because no lie comes from the truth.

    Bearing that in mind, Santa is a big lie.... maybe not to us as adults but to younger children they are led to believe that santa is real.

    So

    1) We teach are kids to believe in santa
    2) Santa has all these parallels with God (that are a bit more shocking than mario IMHO Wink )
    3)We then turn around (If they haven't figured this out) and tell them that santa is not real.

    So in light of this most people "lie" to their children for most of their childhood and then turn around and tell them the truth. Does that make you credible? Why would I believe God is real then if you lied to me? He's very similar to santa...

    Whereas Mario... he's just a video game character. No one believes he is real, no one is led to believe he is real.

    That's what my friend said the difference is.


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  ProfessorAlan on December 20th 2010, 10:57 am

    Hackmodford wrote:
    Bearing that in mind, Santa is a big lie.... maybe not to us as adults but to younger children they are led to believe that santa is real.

    So

    1) We teach are kids to believe in santa
    2) Santa has all these parallels with God (that are a bit more shocking than mario IMHO Wink )
    3)We then turn around (If they haven't figured this out) and tell them that santa is not real.

    So in light of this most people "lie" to their children for most of their childhood and then turn around and tell them the truth. Does that make you credible? Why would I believe God is real then if you lied to me? He's very similar to santa...

    That was pretty much our theory on being a non-Santa family. As I said, we do some St. Nicholas stuff.

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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Hackmodford on December 20th 2010, 11:00 am

    Right and I got nothing against St. Nicholas as a person or historical figure.

    But Christmas in general I believe is wrong. Because of all the pagan traditions associated with it.

    christmas trees, ornaments, mistletoe, etc.

    God tells us "learn not the way of the heathen"


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    Re: Santa good or evil

    Post  Paeter on December 20th 2010, 7:41 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:Right and I got nothing against St. Nicholas as a person or historical figure.

    But Christmas in general I believe is wrong. Because of all the pagan traditions associated with it.

    christmas trees, ornaments, mistletoe, etc.

    God tells us "learn not the way of the heathen"

    I don't see how guilt by association can be consistent with a Christian worldview. After all, many Christians (even REAL Christians) have done terrible, well-known things in connection to their beliefs. Yet this does not make practicing Christianity wrong.

    It sounds as though your concern is not really with Santa and Christmas in an absolute sense, but with a specific use of Santa and Christmas. After all, both can easily be enjoyed without lying to children or believing in pagan philosophies.

    I don't see evidence that incorporation of either in someone's life or tradition automatically does harm. But depending on HOW each is incorporated, both have potential to do harm. Like almost anything else in life. Super Mario included.


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