Pod Prep Can We Have an Uplifting, Safe, Christian Halloween?
CAN WE HAVE A POSITIVE CHRISTIAN HALLOWEEN?
Many churches realizing the potential danger to children of Halloween have a substitute. They have a Christian Halloween. This is a supposedly, positive safe celebration. They assert that children should have wholesome fun on this eve, which can be done in an uplifting manner at the church. Furthermore, some believe the people need a positive fall celebration. Why not use Halloween.
Costumes don’t have to be ghoulish. They could portray star wars characters or cowboys and Indians. It would be just another costume party. This may sound wonderful, but is it what God would desire? Is it spiritually misguided or not?
THE REAL ROOTS OF HALLOWEEN
The Neopagans of today love Halloween. They recognize the pagan earth worship involved. Many realize that it was a pagan day set aside to worship the god of the dead, Samhain (pronounced so ween). It predates Christianity and was a source of human sacrifices and even cannibalism. They burned human bones, thus the term ‘bonfire’. It is loved as a spiritual day for witch craft and the occult. They appeased the lord of the dead and evil spirits on this pagan day. The ancients believed that on October 31 the boundary between the living and the dead dissolved. The dead spirits became dangerous. Costumes were worn in an attempt to mimic and placate the evil spirits. Later the Romans came into the picture, and mixed Halloween with their holiday, Feralia.
The Roman Catholic Church gave up trying to stop the drunken revelries and white-washed the pagan Roman holiday. Pope Boniface IV in 609 A.D. declared Feralia to be Christian. Instead of honoring all of the dead as pagans did and the god of the dead they would honor all dead saints. The pagans now in Catholic Europe, still celebrated Samhain’s day (the grim reaper) so Pope Gregory III 731-741 fixed the date to coincide with the pagan date. Thus, October 31 became All Hallows Eve or Halloween.
Puritans in America blocked its celebration because of its paganism. Later, around 1900 its popularity and momentum increased in America; possibly because of the commercial value and increase in Catholic immigrants. Halloween is now second largest retail event in America behind Christmas.
WHAT ARE GOD’S INSTRUCTION REGARDING SUCH MATTERS
God is jealous and hates paganism. Note in Deut 12:30-31 that He said NOT to learn the ways of the pagan nations around them and try to worship the true God with these false, grisly customs. Further note Exodus 22:18 that witches are to be given the death penalty. We understand that was only in the theocracy of Jehovah where God was ruler. God’s righteous indignation is powerfully displayed however. Halloween is a festival of FEAR. This is not Christian but it does fit our slasher movie culture from holly weird. See II Tim 1:7. When was God ever in need of reclaiming pagan demonic influences as a means to worship him? Never!
The Bible speaks vehemently against such practices not reclaiming them. See Jeremiah 10:2, 11. Further notice Jer. 7:18-19. If a church wants a costume party for the youth why not in June or, any date not associated with dark, pagan rituals. The evil king Manasseh led Judah to God’s wrath by engaging in such matters. See II Chron. 33:1-6. Paul tells Christians to fight and resist the wiles and ways of the devil. See Eph. 6:11-12. How much should a Christian compromise with the devil? Not at all! We should have a holy indignation and anger for the devil and all that he represents. The devil loves Halloween it represents what he propagates fear and the occult.
Paul says not to fellowship with devils. See I Cor 10:20. Why would we want to? Rather we should submit ourselves to God. The unregenerate and reprobates are attracted to the macabre. We Christians should never be attracted by such spiritual garbage. Paul says not to partake at the altar of pagans. See I Cor. 10:21-22. The Ephesians who were converted burned their books of occultist magic. See Acts 19:19.
DO CHRISTIANS NEED A FALL FESTIVAL?
Some pastors stated one reason for having a positive Halloween was the felt need for a fall festival to God. The need they sensed is real. We need that in our yearly structure. It is good habit. God has chosen the correct fall festival. It is known as Feast of Booths. Christ, under threat of death kept this feast also known as the Feast of Tabernacles. He kept this feast though the jealous leadership of the nation was trying to murder him. He went up secretly. See John 7:1. They were all Jewish including Christ and all His Disciples. John 7:1 is referring to the leadership and their running of the Temple of God. Jesus was very popular with most of the Jewish people. Christ spoke twice at this feast and then got lost in the crowd. Note John 7:14, 37-38. The Pharisees reprimanded the Temple police for NOT arresting him. Note their answer in John 7:45-46. It was a very spiritual fall festival. Paul, writing in the New Testament, pressed hard to keep the Feast of Tabernacles just like Jesus. See Acts 18:21.
P pts. 1-Deut. 12:30-31
3-II Tim 1:7
4-Jere. 10; 2, 11
7-I Cor. 10:20
9-John 7:1, 10
10-John 7:14, 37-38