Jeremiah Chapter 10
and the Christmas Tree?
Jer 10:1 Hear ye the word which the LORD speaketh unto you, O house of Israel:
Jer 10:2 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 ax.
Jer 10:4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.
That could only describe a Christmas tree and its ornaments, some will say. What could be more obvious? Jeremiah is clearly condemning the Christmas tree! Well, not so fast. Let's read on.
Jer 10:5 They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.
They speak not???
They cannot go (move) by themselves???
Be not afraid of them???
They cannot do evil???
Neither can they do good???
Just how, if I may ask, can those be logically applied to a Christmas tree? I suggest they cannot, with any sense. But let's continue.
Jer 10:6 Forasmuch as there is none like unto thee, O LORD; thou art great, and thy name is great in might.
Jer 10:7 Who would not fear thee, O King of nations? for to thee doth it appertain: forasmuch as among all the wise men of the nations, and in all their kingdoms, there is none like unto thee.
Jer 10:8 But they are altogether brutish and foolish: the stock is a doctrine of vanities.
Jer 10:9 Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman, and of the hands of the founder: blue and purple is their clothing: they are all the work of cunning men.
Gold and silver plates???
Blue and purple clothing???
How does that apply to the Christmas tree? It doesn't.
Jer 10:10 But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation.
Jer 10:11 Thus shall ye say unto them, The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth, and from under these heavens.
Jer 10:12 He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by his discretion.
Jer 10:13 When he uttereth his voice, there is a multitude of waters in the heavens, and he causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures.
Verses 10, 12 and 13 contrast the true creator God with false gods in verse 11.
Jer 10:14 Every man is brutish in his knowledge: every founder is confounded by the graven image: for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them.
Jer 10:15 They are vanity, and the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.
Ah, graven and molten images that confound their makers! There is no breath (life) in them! Jeremiah is talking about manmade heathen statues - idols:
The idol starts as a tree cut down, and it is then carved.
Though it has a mouth, the idol cannot speak!
The idol is nailed down, fixed in place. It cannot move on its own, it must be carried!
Be not afraid of the idol!
The idol cannot do evil!
Neither can the idol do good! The idol is powerless!
The carved wooden idol is covered with silver or gold plate!
The idol is dressed in blue and purple clothing!
The idol is lifeless!
The idol is vanity (futile), and the work of error!
In context, Jeremiah is clearly not describing Christmas trees, he is talking about idolatrous graven and molten images of the heathen, the worthless futile powerless statues of their pagan gods, that are not to be feared.
See also: The Apocryphal Book of Baruch on Idolatry.
So, according to scripture, do trees have an association with idolatry and paganism?
1 Ki 14:22 And Judah did evil in the sight of the LORD, and they provoked him to jealousy with their sins which they had committed, above all that their fathers had done.
1 Ki 14:23 For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under every green tree.
2 Ki 17:9 And the children of Israel did secretly those things that were not right against the LORD their God, and they built them high places in all their cities, from the tower of the watchmen to the fenced city.
2 Ki 17:10 And they set them up images and groves in every high hill, and under every green tree:
2 Ki 17:11 And there they burnt incense in all the high places, as did the heathen whom the LORD carried away before them; and wrought wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger:
2 Ki 17:12 For they served idols, whereof the LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not do this thing.
Jer 2:20 For of old time I have broken thy yoke, and burst thy bands; and thou saidst, I will not transgress; when upon every high hill and under every green tree thou wanderest, playing the harlot.
Jer 3:6 The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot.
Ezek 20:47 And say to the forest of the south, Hear the word of the LORD; Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee, and every dry tree: the flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.
Ezek 20:48 And all flesh shall see that I the LORD have kindled it: it shall not be quenched.
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