Monday, January 5, 2015

An Interesting “Christmas” Date

As to the season of the year in which Christ was born, there is among the learned as great a diversity of opinion as that relating to the year itself.  It is claimed by many Biblical scholars that December 25th, the day celebrated in Christendom as Christmas, cannot be the correct date.  We believe April 6th to be the birthday of Jesus Christ as indicated in a revelation of the present dispensation already cited in which that day is made without qualification the completion of the one thousand eight hundred and thirtieth year since the coming of the Lord in the Flesh.  This acceptance is admittedly based on faith in modern revelation, and in no wise is set forth as the result of chronological research or analysis.  We believe that Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem of Judea, April 6, 1 B.C.
James Talmage, Jesus the Christ, p.104

Notice how Talmage says this date was given by revelation?  Is it just coincidental that April 6 was the date in 1830 when the Mormon Church was officially organized?

An April birthdate seems highly unlikely, as many scholars have stated.  The primary scholarly ideas for the time of year are examined in my article on Christmas.

Even more problematic is the “revealed” year of 1 B.C.  Since the Bible tells us that Herod sought to kill the baby Jesus, and Herod died in 4 B.C., Jesus would have to have been born prior to that time.  And, since Herod was looking for a child of two years and under, Jesus could have been born as early as 6 B.C.  

Recorded history seems to run afoul of a “revelation” received by the LDS.  Or perhaps the LDS “revelation” never happened after all?

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