Halloween and the Christian
It’s not a topic one would expect to be written by an Australian. It’s the sort of thing American writers/bloggers have been wrestling with for some time but fortunately we’ve not been exposed to the holiday so much here.
The times, they are a-changin’
It seems, however, that Halloween celebrations are becoming more and more popular. Last year a quartet of teenagers came to our door trick-or-treating and a girl screamed instead of simply knocking. It was a little disconcerting to say the least, especially considering the way they were dressed:
So it’s a given, in my opinion, that Halloween is here to stay and only becoming more popular. What’s a Christian to do? Is it okay to be involved, to dress the children up and go trick or treating?
Firstly, the argument that says that Halloween shouldn’t be celebrated because it has pagan roots doesn’t stick unless one wants to strike both Christmas and Easter from the calendar, both of which have roots in earlier pagan practices. Does that then mean that they are wrong? Not at all. Most days of the week are named after pagan deities but no one suggests getting rid of them. The important thing is what do they mean now, not way back when.
If Christmas and Easter are now not generally accepted as being pagan, what does that mean for Halloween? Do people really think they are communing with departed souls, or engaging the spirit-world in any way? I would say that on the whole they don’t although it may be used as an opportunity for some people to dabble in the occult.
And this could be a very good reason to avoid the holiday. God has been clear in his word that he hates witchcraft and sorcery.
You shall not eat anything with the blood, nor practice divination or soothsaying.
Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar, about which I tell you in advance—as I told you before—that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Galatians 5:19-21 HCSB
Just search for the term “witchcraft” or “sorcery” and you will find the Bible denouncing it from Genesis to Revelation. Paul tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:22 to avoid all forms of evil.
I think the picture is becoming clear, avoid things to do with witchcraft and sorcery but there is one more thing to consider:
What will people say?
We are always told not to worry about what others think and to do our “own thing”. This is fantastic advice: if you are carnal. But the spiritual person cares about what other people think. Not so much what other people think of the Christian but what they think of Christ. We can so easily do things that cause the unbelieving world to think less of our Saviour. This should not be! How does the unbelieving world view Christian involvement in Halloween? As an endorsement?
It is difficult to come up with a hard and fast rule with regards to Halloween. As much as I’d like to say, “Don’t do it!” I can’t. It isn’t as clear as that. Don’t take this little blogger’s word for it though. Do the research, make sure your conscience is clear if you do choose to be involved in the holiday.
Please, please, do not endorse the dark elements of Halloween by dressing up as characters generally seen as anti-God and evil. This just isn’t something for the Christian.
Let me know what you think in the comments.