The Meaning Of The Christmas Tree

The meaning of the Christmas tree has become a symbol of the spirit of Christmas in many countries and many, if not all, our homes. What led Christians to adopt this custom?

The Meaning Of The Christmas Tree

The Meaning Of The Christmas Tree

The meaning of the Christmas tree is first mention in history of fir trees used in Christmas celebrations was in 12th century Germany. A fir tree was used in mystery plays as the so-called “paradise” tree. These dramas were held outside during the Advent and Christmas seasons and the fir tree symbolized the tree of life in the Garden of Eden. The evergreen fir tree is a sign of hope throughout the winter season  hope in the promise that the rest of nature too will awaken to new life in the coming spring. The message of this symbolism was simple: through Jesus Christ we too have hope for everlasting life. Indeed, Jesus Christ has become our tree of life  the paradise tree. As such the evergreen Christmas tree reminds us that even though our earthly season must come to an end, yet we will live through the grace of our Lord Jesus.

The meaning of the Christmas tree starteduse of the indoor Christmas tree early in the 17th century, in Strasbourg,  spreading from there throughout Germany and then into northern Europe. In 1841, Albert the German born husband of Queen Victoria, first introduced the Christmas tree custom to Great Britain. He had the first decorated Christmas tree set up in Windsor Castle in 1841. The first Christmas trees in the New World were introduced by Hessian soldiers in 1776. Later German immigrants brought the tradition into wider use in the US. The custom of decorating a community tree began in the early 1900’s and is a popular custom in the US today.

What is the meaning of the Christmas tree? What is the symbolism of the Christmas tree today? Well first of all, the fir tree is an evergreen it does not die or fade away or lose its needles in the winter. In this sense it has soon come to represent the immortality of the resurrected Christ.

The meaning of the lights in the Christmas tree also have a deeper meaning. Originally the lights used were candles, of course. The candles too were meant to symbolize Christ, specifically his self-giving love and gift of life to us. As many of us know, the candle provides light and warmth as it consumes its own substance, the wax. So, too, did Jesus give of his own substance his life so that we might find divine light. And when we have found divine light for ourselves, we too are enabled through the power of the Holy Spirit to give of ourselves to others. After all, Christmas is the feast of love, where we share gifts with each other as Christ shared the gift of life with us.

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