Halloween is less than a week away. It’s the time of year when Christians come out on various social media outlets to shame people who fully embrace celebrating Halloween or shame those that turn the porch light off and ignore what’s going on all around them on October 31. Some find a middle ground between the two but it’s very clear Halloween isn’t your typical holiday for Christians. I could bore you with the historical background both Christian and secular, but that’s not my point here. As a parent of two candy loving kids, I have to use some discernment and……gasp, the Bible, to help inform how I might lead my family during this holiday.
As I reflect back on my own childhood, Halloween was an occasional Fall Festival dressed as Mickey Mouse. I don’t recall trick or treating much as a child. Halloween just wasn’t a big deal in our home. I don’t even think Halloween decorations, decorative lights etc., even existed when I was a child. For some of you Pinterest loving, Halloween super enthusiasts you’ve already broke out in hives but stick with me here. Last year I sat in my driveway with my Mario carved pumpkin sitting next to me, while my wife took our 2 kids out trick or treating. I had the opportunity to talk with neighbors and hand out candy to the kids in all different positive and negative costumes.
Halloween is worth our consideration, it’s worth our time to question what it’s all about, to question how we as Christians should interact with it and how we might use it to open up opportunities for the gospel. So without further ado, here are some verses worth your consideration as you pray and prepare for October 31.
Let’s start here….
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
Let’s agree on this first; however you approach Halloween, as a believer it can’t be like the rest of the world. We cannot conform to the world. That’s not a Halloween principle, that’s a life principle. If you want to do God’s will for Halloween, be transformed, not conformed. So let me ask you a question, does the way you celebrate Halloween look differently than the way your neighbors celebrate the holiday?
1 Thessalonians 5:21-22
But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.
Look at that, we stumbled upon something that says we should be doing exactly what we’re doing now, examining Halloween carefully. Two principles here….hold fast, or tightly, to what is good and abstain from all evil. I’ll refrain from quoting every verse that speaks to witchcraft, sorcery, demons, summoning the dead etc. All the Halloween haters have already memorized and quoted those verses to you so you feel bad. Here’s a question though….in your celebration of Halloween, are you abstaining from all forms of evil and holding tightly to good?
1 John 4:18
There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.
Haunted houses, creepy clowns, death…it is all intended to create fear. Fear is not a God honoring attribute, unless it is the fear of the Lord, but that’s a different kind of fear all together. Fear and love are contrasted here in a passage that speaks to how God is love. In your celebration of Halloween, do you cast out fear through your love of those around you?
1 Corinthians 10:31
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
So whether you eat candy, drink hot cider, or whatever costume you wear, do all to the glory of God. Not exactly a direct quote but the principle holds true. I hope you’re getting this, the question of how to celebrate Halloween isn’t a Halloween issue, it’s a how do we live like Christ issue. With that in mind, as you celebrate Halloween, are you bringing glory to God in EVERYTHING you do?
And as he reclined at table in his house, many tax collectors and sinners were reclining with Jesus and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. And the scribes of the Pharisees, when they saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors, said to his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?” And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.
This story caught the self-righteous Pharisees off guard and truth be told could catch some of us off guard today. Jesus was in and amongst sinners; seriously sinners! Guess who comes out of their houses on Halloween…..sinners. Yes that’s right, all those people you never speak to come outside and go door to door interacting with one another. Here’s a question, is there anything about Halloween, like eating with sinners in the story above, that isn’t clearly wrong? If so, in your celebration of Halloween are you helping the sick, not the ones with the fall sniffles/allergies, the ones that need to know Jesus?
The list could go on and on and reflection on the holiday could go on and on. As you consider Halloween, consider your whole life. There is nothing on this list you shouldn’t be considering each and every day of your life. Halloween is no different than any other day; we’re on a sinful planet, surrounded by sinful people, doing sinful things. Maybe we should stop shaming other believers in regards to our Halloween opinions, consider the Scriptures, and do something that brings glory to God!