So, why would anybody be so determined to keep you from enjoying Christmas?

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Annually, they rage against Mary, Joseph and the Baby Jesus -- livid that they might be honored in school pageants, portrayed on the courthouse lawn or praised in public concerts. But why?

"Why do some atheists embarrass themselves year after year trying to eradicate Christmas from American culture?" asks Doug Giles for Clash Daily. "Is it because they are crusaders for equality, secularism’s saviors and humanism’s heroes? I’m sure that’s what they tell themselves when they’re pouting on their couches all alone on Christmas Eve after every single one of their friends has dumped them?"

"Why is Christmas such a big deal?" asks author Jerry Newcombe for the Christian Post. "Let's put it this way: why do groups like the ACLU, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Americans United for Separation of Church and State invest time, money and energy to fight any vestige of religious meaning to the holiday?"

"Why do some people hate Christmas today? Why is it that some people are aggressively opposed to the message of God becoming man?" writes Bruce Goettsche  on the Union Church website.

Well, this isn't exactly the first time in history that it's happened.

"In Matthew 2 we see the first example of this hostility," writes Goettsche. "The Magi arrived in Jerusalem and asked King Herod, 'Where is He who is born the King of the Jews?' Herod had already executed his favorite wife, her two sons, and one of his other sons. Herod was not a nice man!" Threatened that a new king had been born, he "gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under." He was enraged at the idea of God sending a deliverer, a Messiah -- particularly one that threatened his status.

And now, today, "people don’t like this message that they need a 'Savior,'” observes Goettsche. "They feel they are doing just fine on their own.  They don’t want to be told that their life is unacceptable before God.  They are offended by the truth. "

But it's that truth which must be proclaimed, says movie-maker and film star Kirk Cameron. His film "Saving Christmas" has touched a nerve in the American psyche this Yuletide. Scheduled for a short, two-week run in theaters nationwide, the film has been held over in major cities -- and expanded to even more cinemaplexes across America.

In it, Cameron, a frequent focus of irked atheists, says that Christmas is a wonderful time of the year in which we all pause to celebrate the birth of the King of kings, the savior who changed human history more than anyone else.

That message enrages atheists -- who have targeted Cameron for attack and mockery.

"The reason some rage," writes Newcombe, "is that they hate God and love their sin, and bringing up Jesus in December is not the way they wanted to finish off the year. Indeed, Christ really rains on their parade — and they love their parade."

"Christmas, if you really get down to the brass tacks of it," writes Giles, "isn’t about reindeer, elves and iPhones, but about mankind’s sin problem and what God did to remedy it by sending His Son.

"When you see the atheist attack manger scenes," notes author Janice Crouse, "you might think, 'this is an innocuous kind of thing. What do they have against a manger scene for crying out loud?'

"It gives you some idea of how powerful Jesus Christ is. If He were not powerful, what would they care?" writes  Newcombe.  "So why the opposition to Jesus, at Christmastime or otherwise? Jesus summed it up in one sentence: 'Light has come into the world, but men prefer darkness because their deeds are evil.'"