Is it just my imagination or has Halloween changed? I guess I’m old school, but I remember a night of costumes and fun with everyone out in the community visiting homes you never did any other night of the year, and bringing home a pillowcase full of candy! There was the occasional scary home and prank, but most of the night was fun, friendly and wholesome.
Today, however, there seems to be a different feel to Halloween. The costumes and candy are still there, but the fun of the night seems to have been infiltrated by the gruesome and a scary culture of death. Along with that has come a lot more concern over safety. Some families have resorted to only visiting stores that give out candy or Halloween parties at schools, while others travel to the “safe” neighborhoods to “trick or treat.”. The unsettling bent toward evil has left many a Christian parent to wrestle with whether to have their child participate.
Having 6 children of my own, my wife and I had to come to terms with what our family tradition would be. Back when my children were a lot younger my wife, Deedee, did a little research on the roots of Halloween and October 31st. What she found disturbed and alarmed us. We learned that October 31st is the day most Druids and Wiccans celebrate Samhain, or the Festival of the Dead, claiming that this night is when the “Thin Veil” between the physical world and the spirit world is lifted. From what I can gather by reading about the history of the day, apparently one of the popes decided to move All Saints Day to November 1st in an attempt to “Christianize” the occasion making October 31st All Saints Eve (All Hallows Eve or Halloween for short).
Many faithful followers of Jesus who embrace this kind of thinking seek to shine the light of Jesus while participating in Halloween. A basis for this can be seen in 1 John 3:8, “… the reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the work of the devil.” As for Deedee and I, we choose to forego having our children participate in Halloween but look to show the love of Christ to all who come to our door with candy and gospel tracts at the ready. We’ve based our choice on what the Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 9:22, “I have become all things to all people, that by all means, I might save some.”
Other Jesus followers have strong convictions not to have any involvement in Halloween, citing passages like 2 Corinthians 6:15-18 as their basis. The amazing thing about the Christian faith is that there is room for each to follow the dictates of their conscience in accordance with their understanding of the Scriptures. The Apostle Paul points to this is Romans 14:1 where he warns Jesus Followers, “… not to quarrel over opinions.” He goes on to point out in verse 12, “so each of us must give an account of himself to God.”
However God leads you as a Jesus follower in regard to celebrating Halloween, there are a few things in the Scriptures to keep in mind-
1. The devil is real and the spiritual forces of darkness shouldn’t be taken lightly or toyed with (1 Peter 5:8, Ephesians 6:10-20) A large part of Jesus’ ministry while in earth was freeing people from demonic oppression.
2. The Bible warns us that God’s people should have nothing to do with “the deeds of darkness” which would include any sort of witchcraft, sorcery or satanic worship. (Ephesians 5:8-10; Galatians 5:19-21; Deuteronomy 18:10-14; Acts 19:18-19)
That’s why this year at ICC we decided to Celebrate the Light of Christ instead of the darkness of Halloween. At the Fall Fun Fest, kids age 5-13 and their families will experience the goodness of God in a loving, safe, and hope-filled environment. We’ve got all kinds of family-friendly fun in store with a hay-ride, games, crafts, inflatables, and lots of food. This event is free. Proceeds from the sale of food will be used to bless needy children around the world through our Operation Christmas Child Outreach coming up in November.
For more info on our Fall Fun Fest or how to get involved, click HERE. Come, celebrate the Light of Christ with us!