I’ve never fully understood or I suppose appreciated the fascination with Halloween. Even as a kid I never really got excited about this ‘holiday’. Oh, I get the fun in dressing up as some make-believe character and I certainly understand the allure of free candy. I can even appreciate the fun of the Halloween decorations.
There’s something about getting scared. There’s a thrill that comes with getting scared, especially when deep down you know there’s no real danger. We like scary things when we know they can’t really hurt us.
Having said that I can understand the Halloween hoopla can be fun. But it seems this ‘holiday’ grows in magnitude every year, rivaling Christmas and passing most of the other ‘holidays’ through the year.
What is it with this day and why do I care?
It’s not a Holiday
Halloween (as we celebrate and recognize it) is not a holiday. The word holiday is derived from the two words ‘holy day’. Halloween is anything but a holy day. Granted, many of our ‘holidays’ we celebrate are not holy days; examples, Labor Day, Presidents Day, Mothers Day and Fathers Day, even Independence Day. Factually, only Christmas, Easter and Good Friday are really holy days. But there are others that have a much closer connection to our relationship with God, such as Thanksgiving and Memorial Day than Halloween. In reality, just about every other day we celebrate as a holiday have more to with God than Halloween. Now before you say, “Halloween is ‘All Hallows Eve, with its origins in the church, let me ask if any of you celebrate it in that context (or even think of that in connection with Halloween).
But that’s not really what bothers me. This growing fascination with witches, skeletons, the dead, vampires and many other scary things associated with evil can become unhealthy – it may already be unhealthy.
I realize that all but an extremely small percentage of people, outliers, celebrate Halloween as nothing more than a fun day to dress up and play with things that “scare” us (and of course the free candy). There is a very small percentage of outliers that really do celebrate the things associated with evil and even the evil one himself in some cases. But that’s not what concerns me. There is the fringe, the outliers, in all we do in society. Focusing on them is tantamount to worrying about the “magic” in stories like Snow White and Cinderella and even Santa Claus.
The theme of this day, Halloween, is dedicated to the demonic. Witches and celebrating the dead are strongly spoken against by God. Vampires are demonic and represent the height self-serving violence. Read the actual history of vampires and Count Dracula and you will be appalled. Ghosts are souls that remain here are their death. This stands in direct contradiction to God’s design. “And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment.” Hebrews 9:27 For the Christian, “To be away from the body and at home with the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 5:8 “And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Matthew 25:46
Obviously people, with few exceptions, dressing up at Halloween and decorating their house with “spooky” things are not thinking about the demonic and evil associated with these things. The problem however, is that we never take the time to teach and explain about this evil. God is very clear about His people not practicing magic. He speaks strongly against the celebration of the dead and fascination of the dead. God is very clear what happens to those who die; “And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Matthew 25:46
God is very clear about these things but we as Christians are not. You would be amazed how many people in the church really believe in actual ghosts! The truth regarding these things need to be clearly taught. The truth of what God has to say about these things need to be taught and understood – to children and adults alike. Obviously it needs to be taught in an age appropriate manner. It needs to be known that these are all associated with evil, sin and the rejection of God.
We don’t need to throw away the make-believe, but we need to do much more to make it completely clear what the make-believe is and what the real is. There are those who really practice witchcraft. There are those who really love the beliefs of vampirism; the lust for power at all costs. There are those who really do celebrate and even worship the dead and look to them for guidance and wisdom. There are those who believe the souls of people are stuck here after death for a various reasons. This is a denial of who Jesus is.
There is also a God who has real power, not magic. There are spirit beings, both good and evil. There is a destiny for all souls after death; heaven for the righteous and eternal punishment for the unbeliever.
The continued growth of Halloween may indicate an unhealthy infatuation with things God commands us to stay away from. At a minimum it may indicate a blurring of the lines. Satan uses these things to pollute our minds and at a minimum dilute our understanding of the truth. We should make use of the opportunity to teach what makes such things evil and what God says about them. We can keep the make-believe if we want to, but lets make it clear to distinguish what is make-believe and what is real.
If you’d like to know more or have questions you can contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org