What’s Wrong with Christmas Tree Decorating?


I read somewhere in the Bible a verse that goes something like this: They even “put silver on trees. Do not follow the custom of the heathen.” However I cannot find it again. Could you please tell me where I can find this?


The passage to which you refer is found in Jeremiah, chapter 10. It reads: “Thus says the Lord: ‘Do not learn the way of the Gentiles; Do not be dismayed at the signs of heaven:… For the customs of the peoples are futile; For one cuts a tree from the forest, The work of the hands of the workman, with the ax. They decorate it with silver and gold; They fasten it with nails and hammers So that it will not topple.” (vs. 2-4).

This passage has been noted as a surprisingly accurate description of the modern “Christmas tree,” though in the context in Jeremiah it was a tree cut and decorated as an idol for worship. But the parallel is not unjustified. The modern-day “Christmas tree” many times comes close to being an object of worship, being much closer to the center of the December 25 celebration than is Christ.

As a decoration, the “Christmas tree” might be innocent were it not for the Saturnalia and pagan worship from which the custom has come. The decorating of the evergreen tree in conjunction with the Saturnalia in December was a custom practiced long before it had any association with Christianity. The adopting of the practice along with celebrating the birth of Christ was a case of placing a “Christian” nametag on a thoroughly pagan custom.

What is wrong with cutting a tree and decorating it? There is nothing in the Bible to uphold it, and its association with the worship of idols certainly condemns it.