The Twelve Days of Christmas

Introduction and the First Day of Christmas

Why do we celebrate Christmas on December 25th? I am sorry to disillusion you if you believed that that was indeed the day on which He was born but His exact birthday has been lost to history but most historians believe that He was most probably born closer to our summer months in July. A date was chosen many years ago for which we could celebrate His birth as we don’t know the exact day. December 25th was chosen as the Christ-mass, as the day to celebrate His birthday.

“The Twelfth Day after Christmas, January 6th, was selected as the day to honor the visit of the Wise Men to Jesus. This day was called Epiphany. In 567AD, the twelve days between Christmas and Epiphany were filled with festivals, ending with a party on the Twelfth Night.” (pg. 1 Haidle)

While they celebrated the twelve days following Christmas, we will use the days leading up to His birth and celebrate. Parents you could use these devotionals to prepare your children for the true meaning and purpose of Christmas. On the First day of Christmas we are told a Partridge in a Pear Tree was given. What is this strange bird perched in a tree, and what does it have to do with Christ? “The partridge was known as a valiant bird, willing to fight to the death for its young. This bird’s readiness to die for its young made it an ancient symbol of Christ. The pear tree represents the cross.” (from a hand-out on this topic, author unknown).

As we move toward the day of our Savior’s birth read over the below passages and reflect on how Christ came to willingly give Himself for you, offering His life on the Cross.

John 10:14-15 (ESV)

“14 I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep.”

John 3:16 (ESV)

16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

The Twelve Days of Christmas: The Story Behind A Favorite Christmas Song by Helen Haidle and a handout on the same, author unknown.