It took several centuries for the Christmas tree traditions as we now know them to be in “mass” usage (pun intended).
There are two different stories about it. Rabbi Nachman in a book on Hannukah and the holiday season, he credits it with Boniface the missionary who called for abolishing a tree-related custom of actual “idolatry” , and called for a new use of the evergreen and a new name for the tree itself.
A custom of actually lighting and decorating the trees originated with Lutherans-the first protestant denomination that ever existed.
And who said everything ‘pagan’ was anti-Christian? That’s not a law. Pagans did certain things that are not forbidden by the ten commandments.
People call things ‘pagan’ but in reality some of these ‘pagan’ traditions were pretty universal. To forbid all of them, you’d have to make marking seasons a sin.
Historian Ronald Hutton notes that some customs mistakenly called BC-era originated in the middle ages.
Pagans drank milk. So that’s forbidden?
Consider this: The possibility that some Jews, some pagans and some Judeo-Christians were decidely NOT murdering each other, but borrowing, trading, selling, having cultural exchanges with each other.
We’re so used to seeing and hearing the polarized, conflict ridden narratives that we figure no peaceful interactions took place between them.
Consider also: How stonehearted it would have been of the church to forbid any and all customs, even the ones that were non-violent. Consider how it would have contradicted nature as God’s creation if they did.
There’s only ten commandments. Let’s not add ten million.