God is not an individual supernatural invisible man in the sky or in a location called heaven but is merely a concept which exists in this world.
It is exactly the same kind of concept as the concept of Santa.
Some people just idolize the concept and worship it in religious institutions because they have been brainwashed to behave that way.
God's existence has the same validity as Santa, the Toothfairy or dragons. None can be physically proved and rely heavily on anecdotal testimonials. That is why God is compared to fairytales and fables. A lot of wish thinking and (possibly) indoctrination.
The concept of God entered the minds of the ancient people to make sense about the inexplicable in the world. It was so deeply rooted, believed and worshiped that it stuck. To shake off such strongly held beliefs obviously takes a very long time. Yet, no one has gone as far as to build churches, pray for or proselytize about Santa.
Kids grow up. Believers remain stagnant. At least there's that difference.
The main difference is that God is real and Santa Claus is not. There is no such thing as a sane and thinking adult who believes in Santa Claus, but at least 70-80% of the worlds population of sane and rational adults beleive in God.
Those who don't beleive say that there is no evidence. But the eyes can only see what the mind is prepared to comprehend. T here is plenty of evidence for Gods existence, people are just choosing not to see it.
God has been revealed to the conscious mind. God has been observed through the existence of nature, design, purpose, objective morality, etc. Belief in God is philosophically sound. In Christianity, God is further verified through the intuitive teachings of the prophets and apostles in the Bible.
Santa is an obvious fictional character based off Saint Nicholas. The comparison is therefore logically incoherent.
Santa is a fictional characterisation that originated from Saint Nicholas yes believe it or not but Santa was actually a saint who served God, not the stereotyped fat man in red clothes who flies around the world on a slate flown by deers dropping presents down chimneys.
So if we are talking about a Religious santa being the same thing as God. Than No!
Santa (St Nicholas) WAS a religious person and he definitely didn't posses the same powers as God. So no God is NOT merely a religous version of santa.
Belief in Santa is about what you do. Belief in God is not about what you do. It's about your love for Him and showing people your relationship with Him. That doesn't sound like Santa to me. As for the "lack of evidence for God?" All I have to debunk is the Big Bang theory and gag proves God and Santa different once and for all (and the existence of God.)
I have seen Santa. I have spoken to him. I have plenty of evidence for his existence, yet I don't believe in him. Rationally I know it's impossible for him to be everywhere on the same night, live at the North Pole with flying reindeer, etc.
There's less evidence for the existence of God. I have never seen him, never heard him speak, never sensed him in any way nor is there any rational argument for his existence. It's impossible for anyone to have created the universe, or to be everywhere at once, etc. I don't believe in him either, obviously.
Santa and God are about even on the believability, so let's look at how they are said to act. God demands obedience and will punish you for eternity if you don't obey. Santa also requires obedience, though less strictly, and will punish you--with a piece of coal in your stocking, one night a year.
Clearly, although they are greatly similar, Santa is a much kinder, more forgiving, morally positive myth than God. That's why we pretend to believe in Santa for my son, but not God.