Friday, October 30, 2009

Halloween Light

Halloween is upon us. Within the Christian community there is the on going discussion on whether or not Christians should participate in this holiday. Today, I just want to give you a few of my thoughts on the subject.

Growing up Halloween was never a big deal in my family. We would dress up for school, but that was about it. The one rule my parents vocalized was that we couldn't dress up as Satan, a ghost, a witch, etc. It was a holiday that we didn't pay too much attention to, and so it isn't a big deal to me.

One thing that I think we who follow Christ Jesus need to remember is that we are called to live in the light. So much of what is associated with Halloween is dark, from the scary/gory movies that come out this time of year to the decorations people use. For this reason I think we have to be very careful about how we participate in Halloween. Remember what John wrote:
This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. (1 John 1:5-7; ESV).

A second observation is that Halloween has a focus on death. For the Christian death is the enemy. The apostle Paul wrote; "The last enemy to be destroyed is death" (1 Corinthians 15:26; ESV). While the resurrection of Jesus is evidence that death will one day be defeated, it is still a reality that we face. It is the enemy, the partner of sin, and a tool of Satan. Why spend a day honoring it? Instead, we are called to proclaim life and resurrection. We should be looking for ways to turn this holiday on its head, and use it to tell others about the resurrection of Christ Jesus and the life that is available to us because of this reality.

A third observation is that Halloween downplays the evil spiritual forces that are active in the world. The "comic" versions of Satan and demons that are represented on Halloween help deceive people into believing that the evil supernatural doesn't exist. There is great danger in treating these things we don't fully understand so lightly.

While I am not anti-Halloween, I do think it is very important to think about how we are going to participate in the holiday. Don't look at it as an opportunity to walk in the dark, but look at it as another opportunity to be light.

"Anyone can attend church. Only truly devoted followers of Jesus can
change the world." - Aaron Brockett
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