Halloween brings out heated debated in the Christian community every year. Some people don’t give the holiday much thought either way. Some go all out to celebrate it. Others avoid it altogether. As members of the body, it is much more important to focus on what we have in common versus where we differ. We also can become stronger when we band together to protect our faith standards we hold in common and explain clearly to others what we find offensive in the day without pushing them away.
The truth is, apart from the basic non-negotiables of our faith: the Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), the virgin birth, the fully human yet fully divine God-man, Jesus Christ, (who physically came to earth, physically died on the cross (atoning for all of humanity’s sins in the process), who physically rose from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit, who bodily ascended to heaven of his own volition, who is seated at the Father’s right hand, and who will physically return to judge the living and the dead), salvation by grace alone, the resurrection of the dead in Christ, and a conscious awareness of every soul after death either in heaven or in hell, our opinions about many issues – particularly as they relate to the culture at large are just that – opinions. Because we agree on the most important matter, the person of Jesus Christ, we can disagree on those things that the bible doesn’t speak to directly as sin. The celebration of Halloween is one of those “things.”
Whether you see the holiday as a dangerous pagan practice, infecting young people a weakness for the occult, or as a light-hearted, fun holiday for the young-at-heart, the most important thing is that you do not become consumed by a day. People who celebrate Halloween get why it is fun. But often do not understand why others would object to the holiday.
Below are a few reasons why some believers dislike Halloween.
Halloween is a favorite time of year for sexual predators – especially those who target children.
Like it or not, our world is a fallen one. While many people who celebrate the holiday do so with the intent to engage in good, clean fun, there are those who use it as a time to target the defenseless among us – namely the elderly and children. A family friend, who is a member of the L. A. County Sheriff’s Department shared this information with me. Think about it. We consistently discourage our children from speaking to strangers, let alone accepting candy or gifts from them. But at Halloween we do just the opposite. Predators are very aware of this and have no problem using it as an opportunity to get close to those who would normally avoid them. Some go as far to give tainted treats or to expose themselves to unsuspecting trick-or-treaters.
Halloween can be a scary experience for young children.
Many people, adults and children alike dress up in scary costumes. For younger children, who have difficulty distinguishing between fantasy and reality, witnessing “live” ghosts, demons, and witches can be very frightening. For this reason, many parents of young children choose to attend harvest festivals where attendees are less likely to appear in deliberately frightening costumes.
Some believers find Halloween’s pagan roots disturbing.
Although Christmas and Easter began as pagan celebrations, which the Church appropriated and “depaganized,” some Christians struggle with participating in the Halloween because God is not expressly glorified by it. Whereas Christmas has become a celebration of the birth of Jesus, and Easter a celebration of his resurrection from the dead, Halloween is still more overtly pagan celebration, which can sting the conscience of a person who is sensitive to the significance of pagan practices. Many new believers, those who are sensitive to the significance of occult practices, and those who have come out of occult or pagan religions feel a deep conflict over participating in this holiday and often avoid it altogether.
Halloween is a significant day for those who engage in occult practices.
In their book entitled, “The Facts On Halloween: What Christians Need To Know” John Ankerberg and John Weldon write:
“Although Halloween has commonly practiced today is an innocent time for most youngsters, it is a very serious observance for many witches, neo-pagans, and other occultists…it should be noted that the historic and contemporary occult associations to Halloween have produced something of a “crossover” effect to the larger society so that in some instances the observance of Halloween is not necessarily an innocent practice. Reading through various histories of Halloween one is struck at the large number of superstitions and divinatory practices involved. Some of the former (and all of the latter) can be related to the occult.”
In light of this association, many believers view Halloween as means of familiarizing innocent children with the occult. For some believers the fact that the association is innocent is even more of a problem because the underlying “spirit” behind the holiday is certainly not. Think this is all silly? Take a look at Oklahoma’s struggle recently. The New York-based Satanic Temple formally submitted its application to a panel that oversees the Capitol grounds, including an artist’s rendering that depicts Satan as Baphomet, a goat-headed figure with horns, wings and a long beard that’s often used as a symbol of the occult. In the rendering, Satan is sitting in a pentagram-adorned throne with smiling children next to him.
The day encourages the breaking of the first commandment. The first commandment says:
“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me”
Ouija boards, palm reading all crystal ball reading all break the first commandment
Some say these are just toys that children play with. The Ouija board is far from harmless, as it is a form of divination (seeking information from supernatural sources). The fact of the matter is, the Ouija board really does work, and the only “spirits” that will be contacted through it are evil ones. It’s true that many people view the Ouija board as harmless. They often claim, “Oh, I don’t believe in it,” or something to this effect. However, a disbelief in something does not necessarily mean that something isn’t real. The Ouija board has an objective reality that exists apart from a person’s perception of it. In other words, it’s real even if you don’t believe in it.
And we know this because God himself tells us so. The Lord repeatedly condemns any and all occultist practices, including divination.
I hope this sheds some light. I’m interested in your thoughts. Do you celebrate Halloween? Why or Why not? If you do not, what are some alternatives you have discovered that you can share?
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