Questions From Readers
How should Christians view the use of birthstones?
In some cultures, birthstones are associated with the month of one’s birth. Whether a Christian will wear a ring with a certain gemstone is a matter for personal decision. (Galatians 6:5) In making that decision, there are significant factors to consider.
Encyclopaedia Britannica notes that a birthstone is a “gemstone associated with the date of one’s birth, the wearing of which is commonly thought to bring good luck or health.” This reference work adds: “Supernatural powers have long been attributed by astrologers to certain gemstones.”
Especially in ancient times did many believe that a birthstone brought the wearer good luck. Does a true Christian believe this? No, for he realizes that Jehovah condemned those who left him and who were trusting in “the god of Good Luck.”—Isaiah 65:11.
During the Middle Ages, fortune-tellers chose a gem for each month of the year. They encouraged people to wear the gem of the month of their birth, supposedly to protect the wearer from harm. But it would be Scripturally wrong for Christians to follow the leading of professional foretellers of events, for the Bible condemns them.—Deuteronomy 18:9-12.
It would also be inappropriate for Christians to attach special significance to the fact that a ring had a birthstone. Jehovah’s Witnesses do not celebrate birthdays. This is because such celebrations focus too much attention on the individual and the only birthdays of Bible record are those of rulers who did not serve God.—Genesis 40:20; Matthew 14:6-10.
Some people think that wearing a ring set with a birthstone has a good influence on the wearer’s personality. However, true Christians do not believe this, for they realize that “the new personality” is put on under the influence of God’s holy spirit and by applying Scriptural principles.—Ephesians 4:22-24.
A very important factor is motive. In deciding whether to wear a ring with a birthstone, a Christian might ask himself, ‘Do I want to wear this ring merely because the gem appeals to me, although it also happens to be a so-called birthstone? Or have I been somewhat influenced by the superstitious ideas that certain people have attached to such gems?’
A Christian should examine his heart in order to determine his motive. “More than all else that is to be guarded, safeguard your heart,” say the Scriptures, “for out of it are the sources of life.” (Proverbs 4:23) In making his decision regarding birthstones, each Christian would do well to consider his motive and the possible effects of his course on himself and others.—Romans 14:13.