Wherein I use historical information and exegesis to justify my decision to begin listening to Christmas music in September.
Preamble: The subject of when to listen to Christmas music is hotly debated, especially among my extended family. There are some who think Black Friday is the earliest that one should deck the halls, and they are often offended when they walk into department stores who have skipped over Turkey Day for the red and green (read money) season. Others refuse to echo those glorious strains until December–that is when Jesus was born, right? However, I’d like to offer up a third way, a better way, if I do say so myself. And that way is to begin listening to Christmas music in September. The following argument will be taken loosely from Luke chapter 1.
First: you must work with the assumption that Jesus was not actually born on December 25th but that Christians usurped that date in order to kick out some pagan practices (ironic eh).
Second: You must understand that the number of our calendar months do not correspond to those referenced in the Bible (see this link for reference).
- With those two things in mind, Luke 1:26-45 gives a clear picture that Mary conceived Jesus sometime around September. Gabriel came to her in the sixth month (Elul-our August/September). Now some of you might be tempted to say, “Why don’t we start listening to Christmas music in August?” But that opposition is answered in the text also. In verse 34 Gabriel tells Mary that “The Holy Spirit will come upon you(ἐπελεύσεται-future tense).”
- Sometime between that and verse 39 when Mary journeys to see Elizabeth (a journey that would likely take a pregnant woman–even in haste–at least a couple weeks) Jesus has already entered her womb, as we see that John kicks for joy when Mary arrives. That gives us plenty of buffer to say that it was most likely September and not August, when Mary conceived Jesus via the Holy Spirit.
- So, if you’ve been looking for a reason to listen to Christmas music earlier in the year, you’re welcome. If you’re a person who has a set date for when you begin listening, I’d love to hear your reasoning in the comments.
**Disclaimer: In matters of theology I would never twist Scripture for my own, so I do not recommend (in fact I discourage) doing this in your regular Bible study. However, until I’m shown otherwise, I think the timing of Christmas music (and I use that phrase loosely) is not a hill upon which one should choose to die–in other words feel free to disagree**