Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.—Rom. 8.33

The True Christian and Presbyterian View of "Holydays"

I. The Worship of God

Worship of God must be True & Spiritual Worship. All other worship is either not worship, or worship of a false god.

    John 4:21-24: Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
    Zechariah 7:5-7: Speak unto all the people of the land, and to the priests, saying, When ye fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh month, even those seventy years, did ye at all fast unto me, even to me? And when ye did eat, and when ye did drink, did not ye eat for yourselves, and drink for yourselves? Should ye not hear the words which the LORD hath cried by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited and in prosperity, and the cities thereof round about her, when men inhabited the south and the plain?
II. Spiritual Worship

That worship which is spiritual is that which standeth not in outward actions and works of the hands, but of the heart, when we, out of fear and love for our God, do with great humility and reverence address ourselves unto Him in praise, thanksgiving, and supplication, so communicating with Him and of Him, that we may partake of the grace which is therein conferred to us, and glorify Him in love and a holy zeal, with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength.

    Acts 17:24-25: God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things....
    Micah 6:8: He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
    Deuteronomy 10:12-13: And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?
    Mark 12:30: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.
III. True Worship distinguished from false worship, idolatry, and superstition

True worship of God is that service rendered to Him in the willing acts of obedience to His own word as an expression of our submission unto and high esteem for His will in preference to that of ourselves. As the Word of God is fixed and unchanging, so also, there may be nothing added to nor retracted from His commandments in regards to His worship. All preferring of the judgments and feelings of men over the word of God is truly an antichristian exalting of man's authority above that of God and such service is therefore most certainly idolatrous in setting man above God, superstitious in esteeming holy what God does not, and therefore no true worship of God, but rather devils. It is God's command, His own Word, which sanctifies true worship, that we, thus resting upon His Word by faith, may truly please Him through our obedience. Thereby only may we come before him in faith, when as we confidently trust that our worship is accepted, because His word tells us that it is according to His will.

    Acts 5:29: Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
    Luke 16:15: That which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.
    Deuteronomy 12:29-32: When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods. What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.
    I Corinthians 10:20: But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.
    Hebrews 11:6: But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
    Romans 14:23: And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.
    Romans 10:2-3: For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
IV. The Vanity of Worship as ordained by man

Commands & Traditions of men are forbidden in worship. Further, their use tends to diminish the use of the proper and true worship of God.

    Matthew 15:1-9: ... But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? ... ye make the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
    Mark 7:6-9: ... in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.
    I Peter 1:18: Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers.
V. Holy Zeal for God's worship, requires an holy zeal against all other worship

God's people are commanded to destroy all elements of, and end all uses of, false worship and idolatry.

    Deuteronomy 12:1-4: These are the statutes and judgments, which ye shall observe to do in the land, which the LORD God of thy fathers giveth thee to possess it, all the days that ye live upon the earth. Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree: And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of that place. Ye shall not do so unto the LORD your God.
    II Corinthians 6:16-18: And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
VI. God's Hatred of False Worship and the Just punishment thereof

Worship not commanded by God, just as all other idolatry and superstition, is justly punished by death.

    Leviticus 10:1-3: And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not. And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD. Then Moses said unto Aaron, This is it that the LORD spake, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come nigh me, and before all the people I will be glorified. And Aaron held his peace.
    Deuteronomy 13: ... And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee. (v.5)
    Deuteronomy 17:1-5: ... if it be true, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought in Israel: Then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman, which have committed that wicked thing, unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones, till they die.
VII. Obedience - The only worship or honour acceptable unto God

God is pleased only with obedience to Him, not inventions and sacrifices we voluntarily offer according to our own mind's devising without or contrary to God's instruction.

    Colossians 2:18-23: Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God. Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.
    I Samuel 15:22-23: And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.
VIII. Holydays, as Ordained by men

Humanly invented holydays are false worship as typified by the example of the evil King Jeroboam's appointment of a new feast which had not been commanded by God, but invented of his own heart, as well as the idolatrous feast commanded by Aaron without God's authority.

    I Kings 12:32-13:5: And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense....
    Exodus 32:5-7: And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, To morrow is a feast to the LORD. And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play. And the LORD said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves.
VIIII. Holydays, as Ordained by Antichrist

Humanly invented holydays are elements of the worship appointed by Antichrist: he who has thought to "change times and laws" without respect to God's Law. This is the "Pontifix Maximus" - first the Roman Emperor, then the Roman Pope, who has invented many holydays to add to God's word, as though he were God and sat in the very throne of God to command His people how they ought to worship.

    Daniel 7:25: And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
    II Thessalonians 2:3-10: Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God....
    Revelation 13:11-12: And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
X. Holydays, as Ordained by God, and Corrupted by Man

God hates even holydays which He has commanded when they have been corrupted by idolatry, covetousness (which Paul says is the same thing - Colossians 3:5 and Ephesians 5:5,) drunkenness, gluttony, unchastity, and other sins. All these things, especially covetousness, abound during our modern "holydays."

    Isaiah 1:11-16: To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them. And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil.
    Amos 5:21-27: I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies. Though ye offer me burnt offerings and your meat offerings, I will not accept them: neither will I regard the peace offerings of your fat beasts. Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols. But let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream. Have ye offered unto me sacrifices and offerings in the wilderness forty years, O house of Israel? But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves. Therefore will I cause you to go into captivity beyond Damascus, saith the LORD, whose name is The God of hosts.
    Malachi 2:3: Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.
XI. Holydays ordained by God for the Jews

The holydays and feasts appointed by God in the Old Testament have all been abrogated along with the ceremonialism of the Levitical Priesthood and its symbolic sacrifices and rites in the Temple, which were only shadows of things to come in Christ Jesus. Such holydays we are now forbidden to keep "holy" because Christ, having come as the fullness of all those things shadowed forth, has made that whole system of worship "desolate."

    Daniel 9:27: And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.
    Matthew 23:38: Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
    Galatians 4:9-11: But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.
XII. Persecution from those who practice vain religion

Christians are not to allow Pagans and Jews to judge them for not keeping Pagan and Jewish holydays.

    Colossians 2:16-17: Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.
XIII. Trees in worship

The "Green Tree" has long been a center of false worship for pagans, even from the days of Moses until today.

    Deuteronomy 12:2: Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree.
    I Kings 14:23: For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under every green tree.
    Ezekiel 6:13: Then shall ye know that I am the LORD, when their slain men shall be among their idols round about their altars, upon every high hill, in all the tops of the mountains, and under every green tree, and under every thick oak, the place where they did offer sweet savour to all their idols.
    See also II Kings 16:4, 17:10, II Chronicles 28:4, Isaiah 57:5, Jeremiah 2:20, 3:6, 3:13, Ezekiel 20:47
XIV. xMASS Trees

The Pagan practice of setting up and decorating evergreen trees within the home is condemned in the Bible and God's people are forbidden to learn such heathenish practices or anything else from the false religion of the heathen.

    Jeremiah 10:2-5: 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. 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. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. 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.
XV. Worshipping Images of the Mother & Son

Worship of the Babylonian infant sun god Tammuz, whose birthday the Babylonians established on December 25th, is mentioned and abominated in the Bible, as is the worship of the "Queen of Heaven" who is the mother of Tammuz. The practice of making graven images of a Mother and Son ("Mary" and "Jesus") to sit under a tree or on the front lawn for the world's adoration is identical to the pagan practice of worshiping the images of the Mother and Son (Queen of Heaven and Tammuz) honoured by pagans during the Winter Solstice. ("Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image....)

    Ezekiel 8:13-14: He said also unto me, Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations that they do. Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the LORD's house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz.
    Jeremiah 7:17-23: ... The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger....
    Jeremiah 44:25-28: Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, saying; Ye and your wives have both spoken with your mouths, and fulfilled with your hand, saying, We will surely perform our vows that we have vowed, to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her: ye will surely accomplish your vows, and surely perform your vows. Therefore hear ye the word of the LORD, all Judah that dwell in the land of Egypt; Behold, I have sworn by my great name, saith the LORD, that my name shall no more be named in the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, The Lord GOD liveth. Behold, I will watch over them for evil, and not for good: and all the men of Judah that are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by the famine, until there be an end of them....
    Exodus 20:4-6: Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth....
    Deuteronomy 4:15-20: Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of similitude on the day that the LORD spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire: Lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female....
XVI. The Pagan Mythology of xMASS

The Myth of Santa Clause is just as Pagan as lying is un-Christian. Santa Clause is a devil worshipped by the devil worship of families and churches throughout the world who falsely claim the name Christian while teaching their children that this god can see all things, knows all things which we do, and rewards all the world with gifts according to his loving-kindness. He is the god which the world would believe in: one who is far away, gluttonous, and never punishes anyone. He shows up once a year while everyone else is sleeping and doesn't disturb anyone. This is not the God of the Bible. This is the god of this world.

    Exodus 23:1: Thou shalt not raise a false report: put not thine hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness.
    Proverbs 6:16-19: These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.
    Proverbs 12:19: The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment.
    Proverbs 26:28: A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.
    Ephesians 4:25: Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
    I Corinthians 10:20: But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.
    II Corinthians 4:4: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
    II Thessalonians 2:9: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.
XVII. The one day Holy to God & His people

God commands His people to keep the Sabbath Day, the Lord's Day, holy, as a remembrance of the great work of salvation that God has wrought for His people in Jesus Christ, and as a day of rest wherein His people may cease from their labours and all cares of the world, so that they may diligently devote themselves to the true worship and service of the LORD.

    Exodus 20:8-11: Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy....
    Hebrews 4:9-11: There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
    Mark 2:27-28: And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath: Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.
    Matthew 12:8: For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.
    Revelation 1:10-11: I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last:...
Jeremy T. Kerr 19971225
Revised 19981202

There is no day commanded in scripture to be kept holy under the gospel but the Lord's day, which is the Christian Sabbath. Festival days, vulgarly called Holy-days, having no warrant in the word of God, are not to be continued.
From the Appendix to the Directory for the Public Worship of God adopted in 1645 by the Churches of Scotland, England, and Ireland as part of their Covenanted Uniformity
All festivals should be abolished, and Sunday alone retained.... Here is the reason: since the feast days are abused by drinking, gambling, loafing, and all manner of sin, we anger God more on holy days than we do on other days. Things are so topsy-turvy that holy days are not holy, but working days are. Nor is any service rendered to God and his saints by so many saints days.
From Martin Luther's Treatise to the Christian Nobility of the German Nation, 1520
The idolatry and superstition of the Church of Rome in the worship of God, is their idolatrous kneeling at the sacrament, asserting that the bread is turned into the real body of Christ; their idolatrous worshipping of Christ by the crucifix; their idolatrous pictures and images of God, which they bow before; and their idolatrous bowing at the altars and towards the east; their idolatrous praying to angels and saints, especially to the Virgin Mary; their offering up the unbloody sacrifice of the host; their superstitious fastings and abstaining from flesh in Lent; their superstitious holidays; their superstitious priests' surplice; their adding cream, oil, and spittle to the wafer, and signing with the cross in baptism; their baptizing of bells; their praying upon beads; and many more superstitious customs, for which there is not the least command in the Scripture.
From Thomas Vincent's Explanation of the Shorter Catechism, Puritan 1674
... Contrary [to scriptural] doctrine, we understand whatsoever men, by laws, councils, or constitutions have imposed upon the consciences of men, without the expressed commandment of God's word: such as be vows of chastity, forswearing of marriage, binding of men and women to several and disguised apparels, to the superstitious observation of fasting days, difference of meat for conscience sake, prayer for the dead; and keeping of holy days of certain saints commanded by man, such as be all those that the Papists have invented, as the feasts (as they term them) of apostles, martyrs, virgins, of Christmas, Circumcision, Epiphany, Purification, and other fond feasts of our lady. Which things, because in God's scriptures they neither have commandment nor assurance, we judge them utterly to be abolished from this realm; affirming further, that the obstinate maintainers and teachers of such abominations ought not to escape the punishment of the civil magistrate.
From the First Book of Discipline of the Church of Scotland, 1560
Observing festivals of human institution, under pretence of piety, is strong delusion: it is not acceptable to God [Mat.15.9.]: it diminishes respect for the Lord’s day [Mark 7.9.]: it has an immoral tendency [Ezek.43.8.]: it reflects upon the wisdom of God [Col.2.23.]: it is a direct violation of the moral law [Exod.20.9.]; and is one of the principal branches of antichristian superstition [Dan.7.25.]: the knowledge and experience of true religion disappear from any church, in proportion as zeal for the observation of festivals manifests itself.
From The Ecclesiastical Catechism, Alexander McLeod, Pastor of the Reformed Presbyterian Congregation in the City of New-York, 1806.

Other references available on the internet include:

See Also:
  • Gillespie, George. A Dispute Against the English Popish Ceremonies Obtruded on the Church of Scotland. 1637.
  • Hislop, Alexander. The Two Babylons. 1858.
  • Bannerman, James. The Church of Christ. 1869.