“The supposed anniversary of the birth of Jesus Christ, occurring on Dec. 25: No sufficient data . . exists, for the determination of the month or the day of the event . . There is no historical evidence that our Lord’s birthday was celebrated during the apostolic or early post-apos- tolic times.
“The uncertainty that existed at the beginning of the third century in the minds of Hippolytus and others— Hippolytus earlier favored Jan. 2; Clement of Alexandria (Strom., i. 21), “the 25th of Pachon” [May 20]; while others, according to Clement, fixed upon Apr, 18 or 19 and Mar. 28—proves that no Christmas festival had been established much before the middle of the century. Jan. 6 was earlier fixed upon as the date of the baptism or spiritual birth of Christ, and the feast of Epiphany... was celebrated by the Basilidian Gnostics in the second century... and by Catholic Christians by about the beginning of the fourth century.
“The earliest record of the recognition of Dec. 25 as a church festival is in the Philocalian Calendar [although copied in 354, represented Roman practice in 336].”— Newman, A.H., “Christmas,” New Scaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, Vol. 3, 47.
Christmas, Easter, and Halloween
by Vance Ferrell