Is Halloween something that we, as Christians, should participate in?
In order to answer that question, we should take a look at how our culture typically promotes Halloween. If you walk into stores, you will quickly see what is being promoted: witches, zombies, skeletons, gore, darkness and death. The main focus of the way our culture does Halloween feeds on and perpetuates fear. I believe that taking an honest look at what Halloween means in our culture and seeing if that is what the Lord wants for us is very important. The best way to find out what the Lord would want for us and our families is to take a look at what His word says.
8 For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! 9 For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true. 10 Carefully determine what pleases the Lord. 11 Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them. 12 It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret.
If we are born again of the Spirit of God, then we have light from the Lord. His word tells us we should live as children of light.
2 Cor 6:14-15
14 Don’t become partners with those who reject God. How can you make a partnership out of right and wrong? That’s not partnership; that’s war. Is light best friends with dark?
The last part of that verse, “Is light best friends with dark?” The answer, of course, is no!
Clearly, darkness and death that is “glorified” around Halloween celebrations should have no place in a person’s life who is trying to honor God.
Another thought is this: most Halloween traditions and decorations feed on and perpetuate fear. Time and again God commands us in His word to fear not. So why would we invite the spirit of fear into our homes and lives (and children’s lives) to come and stay for a day or longer? How might we be doing this? Take a quick inventory of movies, TV shows, even cartoons this time of year and you will realize that most of them are promoting darkness and fear. So, if we allow these kinds of images and messages to play on our televisions, we are inviting fear into our homes. I encourage you to be vigilant in what you allow to play on your TV’s.
So, what then is a person who wants to please God to do around this season of Halloween? Should we go into a hole and hide for the month of October? Of course not! First of all, we should ask the Lord what pleases Him (Eph. 5:10). I challenge you to think and pray about Halloween in light of the scripture and what God may be speaking to your heart.
At this “harvest” time of year, instead of focusing on fear and death, we can focus on God, our Father, who has given us a bountiful harvest and give Him thanks and glory for providing so richly for us – Phil 4:19 And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. ESV
My husband and I pastor a church. This will be our 3rd year as a church to deal with the issue of Halloween. Like many other churches, on the last Sunday after church in October, we have a Fall Festival. We have inflatables, simple games for children with candy given out at each station, and pony rides, all for free! We do it in our parking lot and it attracts a lot of people who wouldn’t ordinarily come to a church service. We use it as an opportunity to reach out to the community. It takes many people to make it all happen. But, our church members get so excited about and behind this event! Recently, I read about another church, who at their fall festival, handed out Bibles as a free gift to anyone who wanted one. I thought this was a great idea! So this year, we will be handing out free Bibles! At this gifting “station” we will have people there who are very capable of “showing” them how to use their new gift, share the gospel of Jesus Christ with them, and pray with them. On this day and season where darkness and idol worship and satanic worship are so prevalent, let’s be light and life!
Rom 12:21 says, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” NIV
Overcome evil with good and teach these things to our children! If Halloween happens to fall on another day other than our fall festival at church, we as a family will have a special time at our home or another friend’s home that looks nothing like xHalloween. I don’t want my children to feel as if they are “missing out” because we serve God.
I do believe in the theory of replacement. As Christians, we should replace ungodly traditions that our culture may participate in, with something as good as, if not better than theirs. Please keep in mind, to always ask the Lord what pleases Him in everything we may do or say in our lives. He will show you, if you truly have an open heart to hear from Him, and then DO what He tells you to do.
Instead of trick or treating on the day of Halloween, you can do something special at home with just your family, or maybe with other like-minded families. One reason to forego trick or treating, I have found, is that the decorations and atmosphere my children are sure to encounter at other homes, for the most part, feed into fear and horror. But be assured, they will definitely not miss out one bit. Now, I have taken my boys trick or treating in the past. But that was before the Lord began dealing with me personally about that.
The following are some ideas to get you started that you may want to adopt as your own and maybe even make up some new traditions along the way! Some ideas might be to make caramel apples, have a pizza, root beer and movie night with special treats. Watch a fun (not scary) movie. Possibly let the kids decide what they would like for dinner and have them help you in the kitchen. Make some hot apple cider and let them drink out of some nice cups, if they are old enough. Buy your children some candy that they only get on special occasions. Go to a harvest party or fall festival; many churches have these types of celebrations. Let your children dress up in costumes. Around our house, this is something my children regularly do. Just make sure the costumes aren’t along the lines of witches, goblins, demons, etc. My boys are regularly saving the world from evil plots, as we have a plethora of “super hero” costumes! They can be simple costumes that cost little or no money – make a cape out of a bath towel and safety pins. They don’t need much to go on, as their imaginations will take over! What little girl doesn’t want to be a princess? Let your little girls dress up in some of your old costume jewelry, scarves, shoes, etc. and be princesses, or mommies, or both!!
1 Cor 10:31-So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. NIV
In everything we do, we do for the glory of God!! Why would this time of year be any different?
1 Sam 15:22 says, But Samuel replied: “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. NIV
What I would challenge all of us to do for this Halloween is simply pray and ask the Lord what pleases Him and then obey what He tells us to do. God delights in our obedience!