With the holidays coming upon us, I am reminded of the classic Christian debate regarding our traditions of Christmas.
It’s pretty safe to say that many people who celebrate Christmas (in the U.S.) are celebrating a secular holiday vs. celebrating the birth of our Lord and Savior. But with that comes the question about how we, as Christians, celebrate Christmas.
I was talking with a friend recently who made reference to Rudolph the Anti-Gospel Reindeer. That quickly led into a light-hearted discussion about whether Santa is evil or good, i.e. does Santa represent a works-based salvation or does Santa represent the “Law” which Jesus came to fulfill. Since Santa doesn’t actually bring anybody gifts (parents do) does he illustrate that no one is righteous, thus the need for an intercessor (again, our parents). Was Rudolph like the tax collector who was scorned by everybody or does he demonstrate that special “gifts” equal special favor? If you follow the link, be sure and read the comments. They are some great observations on what we take for granted.
Now Christians seem to take the whole Santa issue in different ways. For example, my aunt and uncle (and 5 children) don’t celebrate in any of the “secular” ways – that means no tree, no Santa, not even gifts. While others don’t see it as a threat but rather innocent fun for children.
So my question to you is, do you believe Santa is a good thing or a bad thing? How do you reconcile your Christian beliefs with the idea of Santa? What do you tell your kids about Santa?