According to Lutheran scholars, the Christmas tree began as the Paradise Tree, a prop in a very popular religious play that has roots back to the 10th century. In this holiday snack, you can make little likenesses of today’s Christmas tree as you share the history that will give your children a chance to understand where the tradition came from.
Holiday Snack Ideas: Jelly Bean Christmas Trees
– Plastic decorating pastry bag (available at party supply stores and some supermarkets)
– Green, yellow, white, and red jelly beans
– Brown pipe cleaners
– Brown clay or play dough
– Tray or dish to hold trees
(You can tell this story while the kids are busy making their trees)
A lot of people on the Internet claim to know the story of where the Christmas tree came from and how it got to be such a big part of Christmas. But a lot of it is pure bunk! The real scholars who dug through many old documents are Lutheran.
Here is what a great Lutheran theologist, Dr. Richard P. Bucker, has to say about it:
From the eleventh century, religious plays called “mystery plays” became quite popular throughout Europe. One was the “Paradise Play.” The play [told] the story of Adam and Eve…and their banishment from Paradise.
The play would end with the promise of the coming Savior and His Incarnation (cf. Gen. 3:15)… The only prop on stage was the “Paradise tree,” a fir tree adorned with apples…
People…began putting their own Paradise tree up in their homes on Dec. 24. …This was the feast day of Adam and Eve. The Paradise tree, as it had in the Paradise plays, symbolized both a tree of sin and a tree of life.
The Christmas tree is a symbol of the tree of life. It represents the promise that Jesus will come again and give us life in heaven forevermore!
1. Alternate filling the plastic bag with different colored jelly beans.
2. Twist the back shut at the bottom and twist a brown pipe cleaner around the base.
3. Use a piece of brown clay or play dough to make a platform to hold the tree. This platform size will depend of the size of the tree. Four by four inches is about right.
4. Place the tree on the platform.
You might also be interested in these other awesome Holiday snack ideas, crafts and activities!
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(Original Image Source: Pinterest)