Was Jesus Born on Christmas Day?

Was Jesus Born on Christmas Day?

Despite the continuing secularization of our society, people remain fascinated and curious about the historical basis for the life of Jesus Christ. This curiosity becomes apparent especially around the traditional holidays of Christmas and Easter , when Jesus is supposed to be “the reason for the season. For instance, a quick inquiry on Google or Bing about the date of Jesus’ birth returns literally millions of pages of material. The vast majority of mainstream Christians celebrate Christmas on December 25 or January 6 Eastern Orthodox , depending on their denominational allegiance. While a minority of these Christians insist that December 25 is the correct date of the Nativity, most people realize that proof for this early winter date is quite scanty, which we will see presently. Even so, very few of them think that the date is significant as long as one is celebrating the advent of the Son of God into the world for the salvation of mankind—and one experiences good cheer with family and friends and receives the expected number of presents under the tree. I know, my cynicism is showing. In the run-up to Christmas, it is not uncommon for newspapers, magazines, and online news sites to publish articles revealing the errors and inconsistencies in the supposedly Christian holiday.

Date of birth of Jesus

You know how people often say that Jesus was born in 4 B. The calculations that lead to these dates are all based on a proposal that was made just over a hundred years ago. But now scholars are challenging this proposal, because it looks like it’s wrong. And it’s been distorting our understanding of when Jesus was born for over a hundred years.

Jesus’ date of birth. Luke 1, In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the.

It later came into international use. Made centuries after Christ, this calculation is in no way essential to the Faith. The estimate that Christ was born in 7—6 B. Matthew records that, attempting to kill Jesus, Herod slaughtered the male infants two years old and under in Bethlehem see Matthew The view that Herod died in 4 B. This would put the birth of Jesus in the 3—2 B. Confirmation is found in the Gospel of Luke. Shortly afterward, Jesus began his own ministry, and Luke reports that he was about thirty years old at the time see Luke Deducting thirty years from A.

Thus Dionysius Exiguus was probably only a year off.

‘Jesus was born in June’, astronomers claim

Specifically, he is commonly believed to have been born eight days before the New Year on December 25, 1 B. But this is very unlikely. For one thing, there is no year 0. The day following December 31, 1 B. And it isn’t as though this system of accounting can be trusted anyway.

Although December 25th is the date on which most Christians celebrate Jesus’ birth, no one knows either the day or the year in which Jesus was born. The.

As we look at the story of when Jesus was born we often think of the shepherds in the fields watching over their flocks. Were the flocks in the fields around the time of our modern-day Christmas, December 25? Browse related articles: Who were the three Magi? Where was Jesus born? What did Jesus look like? And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.

According to Bible commentator Adam Clarke, it was customary for the Jews to send their sheep to pasture from the spring until early October. As the cold winter months began, the flocks would return from the fields for shelter and warmth. Luke 1 tells of Zacharias, who was from the priestly order of Abijah, and his barren wife, Elizabeth, becoming pregnant with John the Baptist after his days of service in the temple.

What Year Was Jesus Born?

The Christmas story has become synonymous with the date, December Luke begins in Nazareth and Matthew focuses solely on events in Bethlehem. The writers of the gospels rarely tell you when things happened and the time of year. She wrapped Him in cloths and placed Him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. But shepherds were not in the fields during December. In December, Judea is cold and rainy, so it is likely the shepherds would have sought shelter for their flocks at night.

Firstly, the actual birth day of Jesus was not December The date we celebrate was adopted by the Christian church as the birthday of Christ.

Luke 1, In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah ; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. Both of them were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly. But they had no children, because Elizabeth was barren; and they were both well on in years. Once when Zechariah’s division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God , he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to go into the temple of the Lord and burn incense.

And when the time for the burning of incense came, all the assembled worshippers were praying outside. Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer 32 has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John.

Why Is Christmas in December?

When was Jesus born? This predella panel from an altarpiece by Mariotto Albertinelli — depicts the newborn baby Jesus flanked by Joseph and Mary. In which year was Jesus born—B. The evidence suggests he was born in 4 B.

Jesus is the Christ, the savior of the world. He is so vastly important that the world’s dating hinges upon his birth—in B.C. (before Christ) or in.

We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our site, show personalized content and targeted ads, analyze site traffic, and understand where our audiences come from. To learn more or opt-out, read our Cookie Policy. Since the early 20th century, many Mormons have thought they knew the exact date of the first Christmas. Elder James E. Elder Talmage didn’t just randomly make up this date. He took it from Section 20 of the Doctrine and Covenants — a collection of revelations mostly through the Mormon founding prophet, Joseph Smith Jr.

Since his book, Mormons — from church leaders to children — have accepted April 6 as the real date of Jesus’ birth. Jeffrey R. Chadwick, an associate professor of church history and doctrine at BYU, published an article in the latest issue of BYU Studies on “Dating the Birth of Jesus Christ” that challenges the popular but not universal Mormon dating of Jesus’ birth to April 6.

The Birth Date of Jesus Christ

The date of birth of Jesus is not stated in the gospels or in any historical reference, but most theologians assume a year of birth between 6 BC and 4 BC. The day or season has been estimated by various methods, including the description of shepherds watching over their sheep. The nativity accounts in the New Testament gospels of Matthew and Luke do not mention a date or time of year for the birth of Jesus.

He also implies that Jesus could have been as much as two years old at the time of the visit of the Magi , because Herod ordered the murder of all boys up to the age of two years, “in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi”. Matthew [10] In addition, if the phrase “about 30” is interpreted to mean 32 years old, this could fit a date of birth just within the reign of Herod, who died in 4 BC. Luke mentions the reign of Herod shortly before the birth of Jesus, [4] and places the birth during the Census of Quirinius , which the Jewish historian Josephus described as taking place circa AD 6 in his book Antiquities of the Jews written c.

Most people assume that Jesus was born on December After all, that’s the day millions of people celebrate as the date of His birth.

When Jesus was born seems to have an obvious answer since our dating system is based on the idea that Jesus was born between the eras we call B. However, the date of Jesus’ birth is not explicitly stated in the Gospels. Assuming Jesus was an historical figure, the Star of Bethlehem is one of the main tools used to calculate when he was born.

There are many puzzling details about the birth of Jesus, including the season, the year, the Star of Bethlehem, and the census of Augustus. Dates for the birth of Jesus often hover around the period from B. The Star of Bethlehem could be the bright celestial phenomenon shown in planetariums: 2 planets in conjunction, although the Gospel account of Matthew refers to a single star, not a conjunction.

A good case can be made for a comet. If the right one is picked, it can provide not only the year but even the season for the birth of Jesus. By the 4th century, historians and theologians were celebrating a winter Christmas, but it wasn’t until that the year of Jesus’ birth was fixed. The Gospels provide us with clues that Dionysius Exiguus was wrong. According to Colin J.

This is the comet Humphreys believes was called the Star of Bethlehem. The Star of Bethlehem was first mentioned in Matthew , which was likely written around A.

Was Jesus Born on December 25

Tradition tells us Jesus was born on Dec. But we also know tradition can be wrong. For centuries, tradition taught the earth was flat and that all the stars and planets revolved around it. Similarly, the tradition that Jesus Christ was born in the dead of winter has also been found to be without solid evidence—in consideration of what the Bible and other historical sources reveal. Yet we know tradition is hard to undo—witness how the names of the 12 months of the Roman year are hopelessly confused, but are still kept in this way.

THE DATE OF JESUS’ BIRTH 41 7 death by a son Archelaus (), so he can unequivocally be identified with Herod I “the Great”, the founder of the Herodian.

Talmage was apparently the first LDS writer to propose this particular date. Nearly a century has passed since his book appeared, and in that time it has become practically axiomatic among Latter-day Saints that Jesus was born on April 6 in that year. Two other Apostles, President J. Reuben Clark and Elder Bruce R. In this article, Jeffrey R. Chadwick, Jerusalem Center Professor of Archaeology and Near Eastern Studies, draws upon many sources—scriptural, historical, archeological, and astronomical—to shed light on the probable date of the Savior’s birth.

Using the known date of Herod the Great’s death, information from the Book of Mormon about the length of Jesus’s life, technical details about the Jewish lunar-solar calendar, the timing of the Annunciation to Mary, and other historical data, Chadwick narrows the window of time in which the Savior would have been born to December of 5 BC. The author is careful to deal with statements made by latter-day prophets supporting the April 6, 1 BC, date first proposed by Elder Talmage.

Chadwick is able to show that these statements always occur in talks given about other topics not expressly about the date of Christ’s birth and probably rely on Elder Talmage’s assumptions. But a careful look at Doctrine and Covenants , upon which Talmage’s proposal is based, shows that this verse was not a revelation by the Lord about his birth date.

In fact, the verse is likely prefatory material dictated by Joseph Smith and recorded by his scribe with the express purpose of establishing the date of the Church’s organization rather than the date of the Savior’s birth. Skip to main content. Dating the Birth of Christ. Product Attributes.

Worship: The Date of Jesus’ Birth

Robyn J. Whitaker does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. I might be about to ruin your Christmas. But the reality is those nativity plays in which your adorable children wear tinsel and angel wings bear little resemblance to what actually happened.

3 Dating the Birth of Jesus Christ According to the NIV English translation of Luke –2: In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should.

As crowds of shoppers begin their hunt for the perfect gifts, Christmas carols are blasting out of shopping-mall speakers everywhere. But is that really the date that Christ was born? If not, can we pinpoint with any accuracy when Jesus was born? In the grand scheme of things, does it matter what day he was born? The angel Gabriel visited Mary in Nazareth Luke — He informed her that:.

Luke tells us that Caesar Augustus issued a decree requiring a census be taken of the entire Roman world, and everyone needed to go to their own town to register. So Joseph took Mary from Nazareth to Bethlehem so they could be registered. While in Bethlehem, Jesus was born to Mary and he was placed in a manger because no legitimate room could be found.

Dating Christ’s Birth

Pope Benedict XVI has revealed in the third installment of his trilogy, dedicated to the life of Christ, that Jesus may have been born earlier than previously thought. The calendar we use today, which commences with the birth of Christ and was created by a Dionysius Exiguus, a 6th century monk, may be mistaken. It is expected that the book will be translated into another 20 languages for publication in 72 countries.

Christ’s birth is traditionally celebrated in the West on December 25th, How was the date of Christmas decided, and when was Jesus really.

How December 25th Became Jesus’ Birthday. William S. Although December 25 th is the date on which most Christians celebrate Jesus’ birth, no one knows either the day or the year in which Jesus was born. The December 25 th date was established during the late 4 th century, nearly years after Jesus died, and continues to be rejected by some million Eastern Orthodox Christians who celebrate the event on January 6 th.

Establishing the date of Jesus’ birth was a work in progress for nearly four centuries, during which various dates were proposed. It appears most likely that the December 25 th date resulted from the borrowing of a then-popular pagan mid-winter celebration. Early Christians did not celebrate Jesus’ birth. The birth of Jesus did not acquire the same importance in early Christianity as did Easter Brown 28 , which was celebrated shortly after Jesus’ death.

There is also no mention of birth celebrations in the writings of early Christian writers such as Irenaeus c. Near the end of the second century, Clement of Alexandria Stromata I, 21, Indeed, birth celebrations were rejected as unchristian.


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