Tell the children the true story of Christmas. Many wonder what is authentic and invented on the first Christmas Eve of history. Starting with the same date.

Is Christmas celebrated around the world on the 25th? Was Jesus really born that day more than 2000 years ago? Myth and history are confused in the construction of the authentic message of Christmas.


Tradition and legend about the birth of the child Jesus

Before the appearance of Christianity, on the same date, the work of the field began, a curious cult to the Sun was rendered, identified with a young god who was born and died each year to the rhythm of natural cycles. The scheme was repeated again and again in the primitive religions: Osiris, Horus, Apollo, Mitra, Dionysus, Bacchus, Adonis, Tammuz, Agni, Krishna, Manu or Buddha saw the light at that time, born of a virgin mother, in a grotto or in a stable, among animals.

History and Myth About The Birth of The Baby Jesus

And very old Roman calendars consecrate Dionysus for the month that began on December 24. In Alexandria, on January 8, the feast of the god Aion was celebrated in Antiquity. There are, then, very old roots of Christmas that, as in the case of other festivals linked to the vital and natural cycles of the earth, were taken advantage of or “baptized”. for Christianity.


For the first Christians, the truly great feast was that of the Easter night, centered on the Resurrection, which were spent in vigil. At first they were not very interested in the exact date when their founder was born, until, from the third century, they began to discuss the subject.

Some ardently defended that Christ was born on December 25, while others delayed Christmas in the first days of January, and well into March, April or May, in the spring. The discussions reached such a level that Pope Fabian ended up banning them.

In Spain, the date of December 25 was accepted during the council of Zaragoza, in the year 380. But the truth is that the controversy over this marked ephemeris continued, and even in the sixteenth century the scholars were still discussing.

To the controversy about the day and the month another difficulty was added. If we began to count the years of our era from the birth of Christ, logically, it must have occurred, no more, no less, in year zero. However, the evangelist Luke speaks of a census of the Roman emperor that forced Joseph and Mary to register, and this one to give birth to the outskirts of Bethlehem, in a manger because they found no place in the inn ??

That census, that of Publio Sulpicio Cireno, took place in the year 6 or 7 before Christ. And, for greater dance dates, both Luke and Matthew place the announcement and visit of Mary to her cousin Elizabeth in the times of Herod, King of Judea, so it seems that Jesus had to be born half a dozen years before the beginning of our era, since Herod died in the year 4 a. C. Not forgetting that the medieval monk who kept the account of the Christian era was wrong in at least four years.

Where was the baby Jesus born?

The specialists also argue about the place. Was he really born in Bethlehem? Or in Nazareth, or in Capernaum, the most important town, located on the shores of Lake Genezaret, which the evangelists call the “city of Jesus”?


It seems that Bethlehem has a symbolic meaning in the prophecies of Samuel, Isaiah and Micah, who speak of it as the birthplace of the Messiah. Nazareth was, in turn, a strong Zealot enclave, an anti-Roman religious political movement, from which the evangelists might have wanted to disassociate Jesus.

Also the cave where tradition places the birth of Christ is the object of doubt. The cave, 12.30 meters long and 3.15 meters wide, on whose floor a marble slab with a silver star indicates the site of the birth, is currently the site of incessant pilgrimages. Located in the medieval basilica of the Nativity, in the Palestinian city of Bethlehem, it is the only place recognized by the different Christian churches as the birth of Jesus Christ.

History and Myth About The Birth of The Baby Jesus

The message of Christmas for children

For the believers, Christmas has a profound meaning. The message transmitted by the Gospels does not marry Christmas at all, as we celebrate it: that message was one of weakness, poverty, loneliness, mystery, lack of security and comfort, internal and spiritual joy, peace, good will and justice.

What does all that have to do with the assembly of the department stores, the bubbles and the tear gas ads? Tin stars, bluish snow and crystal balls are forcibly identified with a prefixed joy, when in reality authentic happiness has no term. It is a state of mind that must be created throughout the year from within, conquering it day by day.

The authentic message of Christmas says that happiness is not outside, in a shop window, in an evening dress or bubbles of champagne, but within oneself. In any case, it is clear that Christmas is for many people a call. There are perennial elements in it that surpass cultures, anecdotes and even historical data. Its strength lies, perhaps, in the need we have to return to the authenticity of the child to be ourselves again.

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