Mothers Day and its Pagan Origins

Joseph F. Dumond

Isa 6:9-12 And He said, Go, and tell this people, You hear indeed, but do not understand; and seeing you see, but do not know. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their hearts, and turn back, and be healed. Then I said, Lord, how long? And He answered, Until the cities are wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land laid waste, a desolation, and until Jehovah has moved men far away, and the desolation in the midst of the land is great.
Published: Apr 7, 2010

Mother’s Day – Is it pagan in origin?

It seems that the more we look into the holidays that the world is devoted to and that have been brought into the professing body of Messiah the more we see their origin is founded in paganism.

Mother’s Day is no different. Rather than write all the details myself I would like to direct you to a website that gives the details.

But, you say, the Bible says we are to honor our mother. Yes it does. It also tells us to remember the death of Messiah. How we do it is important.

Torah warns us that we are not to worship Yahweh with the abominable practices of the people in the land that they were going in to poses. The Commandment to honor mother and father does not come with a directive to do it on a day that pagan’s honor a pagan mother goddess. In fact the treatise of the Ten Words – the Decalogue – The Ten Commandments warns us about pagan worship prior to giving this Commandment about honoring mother and father. AND it also includes the Sabbath. It’s not up to us to determine how we keep HIS Commandments, or what day we are to observe them. Just as Sabbath is the Seventh Day and we don’t have the lawful authority to change it to Sunday ( we don’t have the authority to set aside a pagan appointed holy day in order to obey the Commandment to honor our mothers.

We are commanded to honor our parents every day!

I know this is hard to receive. Tomorrow is Mother’s Day on the calendar. Each year we gather to honor our mothers. We take them out to eat. We even celebrate the day in our congregations. Do we care what Yahweh thinks about this?

My mother is no longer among the living. She passed away about 8 years ago. I have to say that I didn’t honor her as I was commanded by Yahweh. Oh, I did now and again, but I relied on the “once a year” pagan holiday and that was good enough, or so I thought. Little did I know then that I was breaking the Commandments in two areas; I was not honoring my mother as Torah commanded, and I was observing a pagan day in violation of Torah Commandment.

But now, now that I know the Truth, what am I to do? What is any one to do when they profess to follow the God of the Bible and find that their practices are in opposition to HIS Word? In Luke 6:46 Jesus asked, “Why do you call ME Lord, Lord and do not do what I say?” In Matthew 7 we read the Words of Yeshua with a dire warning to enter by the “narrow gate.” HE tells us that the gate to destruction is broad and wide. HIS narrow gate is HIS Torah. The broad and wide gate is one that is constructed by men who are inspired by the liar from the beginning. Now I know you will say that Yeshua (Jesus) is the only gate we can enter in to get to the Father. Absolutely! But who is HE and how do we find the Gate? It is through HIS Instructions. Torah is the Instruction of the Father. Further on in Matthew 7:15-21 we can identify false prophets and false teachers by their fruit. Paul tells us in Romans 7 that we are to be married to Yeshua so that we might bear fruit to God – HIS Father, and now ours through the marriage covenant. How do we identify good fruit? It is clearly identified by Torah. Torah is recognized by most in the professing church as how we know we are sinners in need of a Savior. That means it is the Standard by which we judge the fruit of our lives. We were a bad tree, but in Messiah Yeshua we are to be a good tree. A good tree is not a lawless bride and child of the Father.

In Matthew 7:21 Yeshua expands on HIS Luke 6 question; “Why do you call ME Lord, Lord and do not do what I say?” Matthew 7:21-23 comes the emphatic warning from Yeshua. HE says, “Not everyone who says to ME, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of MY Father who is in heaven. Many will say to ME on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your Name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'”

In Matthew 22:24 Yeshua says, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine, and acts upon them may be compared to a wise man who built his house upon the rock. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and burst against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded upon the rock.. And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act upon them, will be like a foolish man, who built his house upon sand. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and burst against that house; and it fell, and great was its fall.”

The Words of Yeshua, in the so-called New Testament, is that we repent and do the will of HIS Father. HE tells us that only those who do the will of the Father are in HIS family. Yeshua was an obedient Son who walked perfectly in Torah obedience. HE spoke no new Words, nor did HE ever contradict the Words spoken from the beginning, at the foundation of the world.

Yeshua was present at the foundation of the world. HE spoke creation into existence. We see this in John Chapter 1 and in Colossians Chapter 1. Revelation tells us that HE was the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. Yeshua is Divine Elohim, just as is Yahweh, and the Holy Spirit. HE is eternal and inseparable from the Father and the Spirit. Torah and the Apostolic Scriptures (so-called New Testament) readily affirm that “The LORD our God is ONE GOD.” HE is unchanging and therefore we can trust HIM. The Words of Yeshua are the Words of the Father because they are ONE.

Peter tells us in 1st Peter 1 that it is the Spirit of Messiah (Christ) that spoke to the prophets. Moses, if you remember, was a prophet. Yeshua therefore was the Lawgiver who said, “You shall not worship ME with those abominable things.”

So, now, what are we to do, if we call HIM Lord? Do we obey HIM as Lord and repent of our pagan ways and follow the pure Torah that is designed to give life? We can, in Yeshua. With men things are impossible because, as Paul tells us in Romans 8, the flesh CANNOT submit to Torah. But we have the Spirit who indwelt the prophets, and spoke through them, living in us. We have Yeshua. With Yeshua all things are possible. That is, all things lawful, because we’ve seen that the lawless will be told by HIM to depart from HIM.

I know it is hard to take this stand. Our wives, our mothers, our sisters, our fathers, other family and friends most likely won’t embrace the Truth. But we must, if we call HIM Lord, obey HIS Word. We can, by grace through faith in HIM, the Living Torah. But while we keep the Torah Commandment to abstain from pagan practices we must also keep the Commandment to honor our mother and father. Putting off the old man, crucifying the flesh must be accompanied by putting on Messiah Yeshua. This is accomplished in Torah observance according to HIS Word. But it cannot be accomplished in the flesh. Only by HIS Spirit working grace in us is this accomplished. It is not by our power, nor our might, but by HIS Spirit, says Yahweh. And besides Yahweh there is no Yeshua!

Shabbat Shalom and blessings to you as you follow HIM according to HIS Torah, by HIS work of grace, accessed through faith (believing HIS Word.)

Mother’s Day History

Origin of Mother’s Day goes back to the era of ancient Greek and Romans. But the roots of Mother’s Day history can also be traced in UK where a Mothering Sunday was celebrated much before the festival saw the light of the day in US. However, the celebration of the festival as it is seen today is a recent phenomenon and not even a hundred years old. Thanks to the hard work of the pioneering women of their times, Julia Ward Howe and Anna Jarvis that the day came into existence. Today the festival of Mothers day is celebrated across 46 countries (though on different dates) and is a hugely popular affair. Millions of people across the globe take the day as an opportunity to honor their mothers, thank them for their efforts in giving them life, raising them and being their constant support and well wisher.

Earliest History of Mothers Day

The earliest history of Mothers Day dates back to the ancient annual spring festival the Greeks dedicated to maternal goddesses. The Greeks used the occasion to honor Rhea, wife of Cronus and the mother of many deities of Greek mythology.

Ancient Romans, too, celebrated a spring festival, called Hilaria dedicated to Cybele, a mother goddess. It may be noted that ceremonies in honor of Cybele began some 250 years before Christ was born. The celebration made on the Ides of March by making offerings in the temple of Cybele lasted for three days and included parades, games and masquerades. The celebrations were notorious enough that followers of Cybele were banished from Rome.

Early Christians celebrated a Mother’s Day of sorts during the festival on the fourth Sunday of Lent in honor of the Virgin Mary, the Mother of Christ. In England the holiday was expanded to include all mothers. It was then called Mothering Sunday.

History of Mother’s Day: Mothering Sunday

The more recent history of Mothers Day dates back to 1600s in England. Here a Mothering Sunday was celebrated annually on the fourth Sunday of Lent (the 40 day period leading up to Easter) to honor mothers. After a prayer service in church to honor Virgin Mary, children brought gifts and flowers to pay tribute to their own mothers.

On the occasion, servants, apprentices and other employees staying away from their homes were encouraged by their employers to visit their mothers and honor them. Traditionally children brought with them gifts and a special fruit cake or fruit-filled pastry called a simnel. Yugoslavs and people in other nations have observed similar days.

Custom of celebrating Mothering Sunday died out almost completely by the 19th century. However, the day came to be celebrated again after World War II, when American servicemen brought the custom and commercial enterprises used it as an occasion for sales.

History of Mother’s Day: Julia Ward Howe

The idea of official celebration of Mothers day in US was first suggested by Julia Ward Howe in 1872. An activist, writer and poet Julia shot to fame with her famous Civil War song, “Battle Hymn of the Republic”. Julia Ward Howe suggested that June 2 be annually celebrated as Mothers Day and should be dedicated to peace. She wrote a passionate appeal to women and urged them to rise against war in her famous Mothers Day Proclamation, written in Boston in 1870. She also initiated a Mothers’ Peace Day observance on the second Sunday in June in Boston and held the meeting for a number of years. Julia tirelessly championed the cause of official celebration of Mothers Day and declaration of official holiday on the day. Her idea spread but was later replaced by the Mothers’ Day holiday now celebrated in May.

History of Mother’s Day: Anna Jarvis

Anna Jarvis is recognized as the Founder of Mothers Day in US. Though Anna Jarvis never married and never had kids, she is also known as the Mother of Mothers Day, an apt title for the lady who worked hard to bestow honor on all mothers.

Anna Jarvis got the inspiration of celebrating Mothers Day from her own mother Mrs Anna Marie Reeves Jarvis in her childhood. An activist and social worker, Mrs Jarvis used to express her desire that someday someone must honor all mothers, living and dead, and pay tribute to the contributions made by them.

A loving daughter, Anna never forgot her mothers word and when her mother died in 1905, she resolved to fulfill her mothers desire of having a mothers day. Growing negligent attitude of adult Americans towards their mothers and a desire to honor her mothers soared her ambitions.

To begin with Anna, send Carnations in the church service in Grafton, West Virginia to honor her mother. Carnations were her mothers favorite flower and Anna felt that they symbolized a mothers pure love. Later Anna along with her supporters wrote letters to people in positions of power lobbying for the official declaration of Mothers Day holiday. The hard work paid off. By 1911, Mother’s Day was celebrated in almost every state in the Union and on May 8, 1914 President Woodrow Wilson signed a Joint Resolution designating the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.

History of Mother’s Day: Present Day Celebrations

Today Mothers Day is celebrated in several countries including US, UK, India, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia, Mexico, Canada, China, Japan and Belgium. People take the day as an opportunity to pay tribute to their mothers and thank them for all their love and support. The day has become hugely popular and in several countries phone lines witness maximum traffic. There is also a tradition of gifting flowers, cards and others gift to mothers on the Mothers Day. The festival has become commercialized to a great extent. Florists, card manufacturers and gift sellers see huge business potential in the day and make good money through a rigorous advertising campaign.

It is unfortunate to note that Ms Anna Jarvis, who devoted her life for the declaration of Mothers Day holiday was deeply hurt to note the huge commercialization of the day.


  1. G. Zauss

    Considering that there is no set date, no specific deity, fertility goddesses do not exist (YHWH himself opens and closes the womb Gen 29:31, Gen 30:22)
    We have the positive commands:
    Exo 20:12 Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God give thee.
    Deu 5:16 Honour thy father and thy mother, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

    We have the expectation and example of a virtuous woman found in Scripture:
    Pro 31:28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband [also], and he praiseth her.
    I don’t think YHWH considers it Worshiping HIM falsely.
    As far as commercialism, Judaica stores use ALL of the YHWH’s Feast Days to pander their wares.
    Even the selling of the HOLY SCRIPTURES themselves have been commercialized!

  2. linford

    I love the idea of mother’s day and the respect towards mothers and the blessing of having your children bless you and show how they appreciate their mother. This has nothing to do with pagan worship thats nonsense especially as there a number of` single mothers who have worked to bring up children and nothing to do with disrespecting God.