The Mountain of Fire and Miracles MFM, Ministries has reacted to comments on its prohibition of Christmas celebration by members saying that it would not condemn the celebration by others even as it reiterated that the festivity was rooted in idolatry.
The church in a statement on Thursday also affirmed that Jesus could not on the basis of the weather condition have been born on December 25.
General Overseer of MFM, Dr. Daniel Olukoya had during a church programme on Wednesday urged MFM members and Christians to stop celebrating Christmas which he said was rooted in idolatry.
The statement had sparked outrage on social media.
Clarifying the church’s position, Olukoya’s spokesman, Collins Edomaruse in a statement titled, “The Controversy on Christmas, December 25th as Jesus’ Birthday: Our Position and Clarification,” said:
“With reference to the varied reactions that have been trailing the message of our General Overseer (World-wide), Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries (MFM), Dr. Daniel Olukoya, on the celebration of December 25th as Christmas in celebration of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, during the church’s weekly Manna Water service on Dec. 25, 2019, we make the following clarifications…
“Though the foundation of Christmas is idolatry and God hates idolatry with perfect hatred, we will not throw away the baby and the birth water.
We do not condemn those who celebrate.
“Jesus is born in us at MFM everyday. His death is our birth certificate.
“We will bring out the positive out of the negatives by using all holidays for prayers, conferences seminars and activities.
“We will hold seminars, conventions, camp meetings or special teaching services to pray, examine the scriptures and draw positives from the wrong, negative and idolatry practises of the two events: Easter and Christmas.
“We will hold special meetings to re-teach, re-emphasise and reappraise the significance of Jesus’ birth, death, cross and resurrection.
“ON DECEMBER AND THE SHEPHERDS
“Strange but true! Remember those shepherds who were “keeping watch over their flocks by night”? (Luke 2:8). December weather around Bethlehem is often miserably cold, wet and rainy. No shepherd in his right mind would have kept his flocks outside at night at that time of year!
“The passage argues against the December 25th birth of Jesus Christ since the weather would not have permitted shepherds to be out in the fields with their flocks then.
“Also, Luke 2:1-4 tells us that Jesus was born in Bethlehem because his parents came to that town to register in a Roman census. The Romans were well known as highly efficient administrators. It would have made no sense to have conducted a census in the dead of winter, when temperatures often dropped below freezing and traveling was difficult due to poor road conditions. Taking a census under such conditions would have been pointless.
“The Bible nowhere tells us to observe a holiday celebrating Jesus Christ’s birth —but it clearly does tell us to do ‘communion’ in remembrance of him.”