Tuesday, November 01, 2011

The Halloween Controversy

This Ask The Pastor question is from a mother in the congregation that is concerned about Halloween.
She writes, "Should Christians participate or not?
In the conversations, these points have been spoken.

Christians who participate in halloween, go door to door, costumes of all kinds, etc.

Christians who say its totally wrong for christians to participate and new christians get offended and say their being judged.

Christians who participate in an alternative (fall fun fest) and new christians call that hypocrisy.

Christians calling it the devils day. "

Let me be the first to say I hate Halloween. I hate it for the drama that it creates in good followers of Jesus.

1) I don't believe that the Devil gets a special day to call his own. True, Halloween has it's roots in paganism as do many of the holidays we celebrate. Christmas and Easter for instance can be traced to Solstice and Spring rituals. Yet the church has rejected the pagan underpinnings of those holidays and infused the holidays with new meanings. This hasn't traditionally been done for Halloween- though many evangelical churches offer an alternative to the Halloween- calling it a Fall Festival or what have you. This, in my estimation is not hypocrisy but redemption. We are redeeming the time for the days are evil ( Eph 5.16) At CLC there is fun games and OUTREACH to the community and kids. A salvation message is always included at some level.

2. While I think it is probably pretty questionable to accept candy from strangers (something we teach our children not to do the other 364 days of the year), I don't see it as sin. If we find ourselves glorifying death or Satan or even macabre we are in error. It is certainly not something that we should be encouraging our children to do. The cause of the flood of Noah was the sin of VIOLENCE. (Gen 6.5,6,13) With that said, the Old Testament is pretty violent, so even when my kids dressed up like bible characters there was a violent side! It isn't wrong for children to dress up and pretend the other 364 days and so there is no sin in them dressing up on that day. Christian parents should do everything they can to differentiate their participation from the worlds. On the other hand, when else are the neighbor kids coming over ? It wouldn't hurt to drop an invitation to church in the bag along with the candy. if you are concerned about the school day and it's celebrations, I always gave my kids the option of staying home... and they almost always did stay home.

3. The bible is very clear about judging each other by "what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a new Moon celebration or a sabbath day" Col 2.16ff We have "died with Christ to the basic principles of this world, why, as though you still belonged to it, do you submit to it's rules: 'Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!'"? Believers have all been rescued from the dominion of darkness and brought into the kingdom, so celebrate the redemption by using every day to glorify God! So if your little girl wants to dress up like Snow White you can find the gospel in that story. (The church as the bride poisoned by sin waiting for redemption from the prince (Jesus)). And you can redeem that!

Hope that helps!


Jason M Smith said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason M Smith said...

Well put ;)