Question: Thoughts on Halloween



shalomtwotwo asked:

What are your thoughts on Halloween?


 

You know, when I see my fellow Christians rally against Halloween: I sort of giggle a little bit. 

Not because I think I’m a cool relevant hipster kind of Christian, but because if we’re going against Halloween, then we also better picket against Christmas and Easter.  Both have countless pagan traditions.  And while we’re hating on pagan-related stuff, better quit drinking Starbucks too, since their logo is a Greek homicidal temptress.

 

Some things to consider about Halloween:

– There’s a huge difference between the occult/witchcraft/sorcery stuff that sacrifices squealing animals and an American pastime that’s celebrated by kids.  It’s not hard to make the distinction.

– If you’re into Harry Potter, Hunger Games, Lord of the Rings, or The Walking Dead, this does NOT disqualify you as a Christian

– But if for some reason you’re easily scared, or you get those horror-type images stuck in your head, or you’re recovering from a dangerous situation with the occult, then by all means: please practice caution for yourself.  That’s totally a Romans 14 issue.

– While it’s good to at least address the made-up mythology behind Halloween for younger kids, we don’t need to judge parents who take their kids trick-or-treating. 

– I also think it’s totally okay to have an alternate event for younger children at your church.  We might poke fun at “Hallelujah Night” or the even worse “Harvest Day” (sounds like we’re in the illegal organs business), but I’ve always had fun hosting these for my Sunday School.  After all, it’s probably unwise to scare young kids with putrefied zombies or extremely messed up ghost stories, because there’s really a limit of safety for kids who will get freaked out by anything.

– I’m not okay with the church making Halloween some kind of grand social issue.  There is a long list of other concerns that out-prioritizes this, and God is not patting us on the head for taking a stand against ghosts.  If someone is yelling “blasphemy” at Halloween, then I also hope we’re yelling blasphemy that our churches are not giving aid to the poor, rescuing sex slaves, or caring for the 6000+ people groups who don’t know Jesus. 

I really do love the church, but come on.  In the end, God will not say, “Well done, good and faithful Halloween fighter.”

— J

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9 thoughts on “Question: Thoughts on Halloween

  1. For the record Lord of the Rings was written by Tolkien – a dedicated Christian and friend of CJ Lewis. Tolkien was one of the people responsible for Lewis conversion to becoming a believer. Story is about Good vs Evil – as is Chronicles of Narnia. Each to his own I say.

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    1. Yep! I think you meant C.S. Lewis. From what I remember, Tolkien wrote LOTR somewhat as an allegory for World War II, and sort of chided Lewis for making Narnia “too Christian.” Both men had a falling out for a while as well. In any case, there are certainly Christian themes in LOTR.

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  2. Edit: Please allow me to clarify that I do NOT think Christmas and Easter are on the same “level” as Halloween. Certainly Christmas and Easter are (supposed to) center on Christianity. But if we’re being consistent, then there are pagan elements in all these things that we should be equally fighting IF we’re against Halloween.

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  3. Greetings, Just wanted you to know I really enjoy your blog. I mentioned it in my post today as I received the Versatile Blogger’s Award this week. If you are so inclined, click on the green “award” on my site for rules on how to “accept.” Your blog has really been a blessing to me.

    Lilka

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  4. Joon I appreciated this post. And I have to admit that I find it amusing. All of it. As you say, there are pagan elements to Christmas, Easter and Halloween (and many other holidays). OR …should I say there are Roman Catholic elements to each as well? I think the whole thing is silly, but I have come to a conclusion. The reason protestants are OK with Christmas and Easter and not Halloween? Because behind the gifts, the candy, the celebration… Christmas and Easter focus on the king. The one. The holy one who died and rose for us again for us. Halloween? It focuses on the saints, the martyrs, the indulgences. It is certainly Roman Catholic, just as easter and christmas are, and It is not very pagan any more – even if the stink of neo-paganism lingers a tad on Nov. 1. I do not think there is anything wrong per se with going out dressed as Dora the Explorer and getting candy from the neighbours, or going to harvest fest (that is what we did tonight) but there is a certainly a difference between Halloween and Christmas – at least as Protestants there is.

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    1. Hey brother, right on and agreed. I tried to make an amendment at the end in the comments section that Halloween is definitely further from the heart of God than Christmas/Easter. I suppose anything can be easily twisted up for perversion, profit, and false pretenses, just as most anything can be redeemed for celebrating the right things too.

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  5. Amen! You can find paganism everywhere. I find if you’re going to be legalistic then you mines well take it the whole way but then you’ll be one miserable person. I’m not against people’s personal convictions. Legalism is when they cross the line and try to push their convictions on others like it’s gospel. As a recovering pharisee it would be easy to point out just how far it can go. But I find that most legalistic people only take it so far. They’re not willing to go all the way with their legalism. Going all the way is what shook me out of my deep legalism. It is hard though as a blogger to know where the line is between sharing personal convictions and pushing legalism. God knows I’m a work in progress. like all believers.

    It’s nice to see people with convictions though. There are so many that don’t know why they do what they do. It’s good to know the history of things. But knowledge should never be used as a weapon to beat others with. Plus when you get to the nitty gritty it comes down to common sense. I like owl figurines but I’m not worshiping Athena. I have a black cat and I like the colors orange and black. I also like to apple bob and carve pumpkins but I’m not a witch. I don’t believe I’m scaring away goblins.

    On the other hand, I believe we have to be careful because the spiritual world is real. I know I can’t open my mind to anything and everything. I don’t want to glorify death, murder, and sexual perverseness. There is a line. If a believer truly has a heart for Jesus and stays in His word I know He will convict them if they are about to cross that line. For someone who has seen the demonic and has horrible nightmares…that line is closer than most.

    Whereas my husband can watch The Walking Dead, I have to stay in the other room so I don’t vomit. Certain movies I ask him not to even watch in the house. Others I ask him not to watch at all for my sake. My son has no issue with orcs and hobbits but he can’t even watch a Frank Peretti movie (Christian thriller for kids). The spiders gave him nightmares yet we watched “End of the Spear” (where missionaries are speared by a tribe) and he was fine. Everybody’s different…

    Thanks again for an inspiring post! God bless! ~Amber

    PS: I always thought the Starbucks Logo looked like a goddess. Lol now I know!

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    1. Thanks for sharing Amber! No doubt that we need to be careful on certain matters. That’s definitely all a Romans 14 issue.
      And for sure there is a spiritual element to things that can be unknowingly harmful, whether it looks good on the surface or not. One thing that used to freak me out as a kid (long before I was a Christian) was a Ouija Board. Something about it just terrified me. I would still never mess with one because you just never know what you’re tapping into.
      Thank you always for your nuanced thoughtful responses. 🙂

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      1. Anytime bro :). I came close to playing with a Ouija board once but my Mom found out and stopped me from going to that friend’s house. When she told me about them I was freaked out too. My ex-step mom played tarot cards. My Dad and two preacher buddies burnt them and exorcised them. My Dad and his friend had a demon bother them afterwards. The other friend still gets chills talking about it. It deeply concerns me that tarot cards are sold in the kid’s section of the Dollar Tree. Dangerous stuff… God bless!

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