“And God spake all these words, saying, I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;”
Exodus 20:1-5 KJV
This had me thinking of how I could incorporate the Bible into this Holiday called St. Patrick’s Day, or some would say “just a day to wear green.” Our kids will be seeing leprechauns, rainbows, and pots of gold all around stores, school, etc. There are around 17 Bible verses that have to do with “gold” in them, but I am not going to mention them right now. The real question is, should this be a day for Christians to celebrate on March 17 every year, for green leprechauns or the day called St. Patrick’s Day ? The Catholic Encyclopedia gives some interesting but disturbing claims about St. Patrick:
Apostle of Ireland, born at Kilpatrick, near Dumbarton, in Scotland, in the year 387; died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland…Pope St. Celestine I, who rendered immortal service to the Church by the overthrow of the Pelagian and Nestorian heresies, and by the imperishable wreath of honour decreed to the Blessed Virgin in the General Council of Ephesus, crowned his pontificate by an act of the most far-reaching consequences for the spread of Christianity and civilization, when he entrusted St. Patrick with the mission of gathering the Irish race into the one fold…
“St. Patrick’s Breast-Plate”, is supposed to have been composed by him in preparation for this victory over Paganism. The following is a literal translation from the old Irish text:
I bind to myself today
The strong virtue of the Invocation of the Trinity:
I believe the Trinity in the Unity…
St. Patrick proceeded through Gowran into Ossory; here he erected a church under the invocation of St. Martin, near the present city of Kilkenny, and enriched it with many precious relics which he had brought from Rome…
Many times in the day he armed himself with the sign of the Cross…
Far more ample, however, were the aspirations of the saint, and he resolved to persevere in fasting and prayer until the fullest measure of his petition was granted. Again and again the angel came to comfort him, announcing new concessions; but all these would not suffice. He would not relinquish his post on the mountain, or relax his penance, until all were granted. At length the message came that his prayers were heard:
- many souls would be free from the pains of purgatory through his intercession…and…
- greatest blessing of all, Patrick himself should be deputed to judge the whole Irish race on the last day.,
Such were the extraordinary favors which St. Patrick, with his wrestling with the Most High, his unceasing prayers, his unconquerable love of heavenly things, and his unremitting penetential deeds, obtained for the people whom he evangelized (Cardinal Moran, Patrick Francis. Transcribed by Mary Doorley. St. Patrick. The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume XI. Published 1911. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Nihil Obstat, February 1, 1911. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York).
Saint Patrick’s Day (Irish: Lá ‘le Pádraig or Lá Fhéile Pádraig), colloquially Paddy’s Day or St. Patty’s Day, is the feast day which annually celebrates Saint Patrick (373-493), the patron saint of Ireland, on March17, the day on which Saint Patrick died…It became a feast day in the universal church due to the influence of the Waterford-born Franciscan scholar Luke Wadding, as a member of the commission for the reform of the Breviary in the early part of the 17th century…
One traditional icon of the day is the shamrock. This stems from a more bona fide Irish tale that tells how Patrick used the three-leafed shamrock to explain the Trinity. He used it in his sermons to represent how the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit could all exist as separate elements of the same entity. His followers adopted the custom of wearing a shamrock on his feast day.
The St. Patrick’s Day custom came to America in 1737, the first year St. Patrick’s Day was publicly celebrated, in Boston, Mass.
A lot of people on this holiday just party , dress in green, go to parades, get drunk, look for that pot of gold or four leaf clover. But as Christians we ought to focus on Jesus Christ alone and celebrate Him alone in the fullness in God. How do you celebrate the fourth of July if you are a Christian living in America? How do you celebrate Thanksgiving if you live in America? How do you celebrate December 25th? How about Valentines day? Paul said when I was with the Jews I became as the Jews when I was with Gentiles I became as gentiles. When you are in America become as Americans so as to spread the Gospel of the Lord. Just don’t do anything in violation to Christ like getting drunk. I think you should respect God just as it says in the bible, “And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:” 1Peter 1:17 KJV It’s not that I don’t believe in saints, I just believe it’s unbiblical to pray directly to anyone except to God through Jesus Christ. So why not on this holiday of St. Patrick’s Day open your heart up to Jesus Christ, because He is the one that died on the cross to pay the penalty for your sins so that you could have the free gift of eternal life. Amen
By: Jeff Ellinger