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« November Conferences | Main | Licona on Ehrman »

October 29, 2009



Like! Like! Like!

great article melinda

As a small Christian witness I pass out ATS cartoon tracts with good candy at Halloween.

Great post.

Good point, Melinda, and I agree.

My own concern with Halloween is with influence it may have in the hearts & minds of children, especially confusion that could be wrought in them, and the weak, when they see Christians participating, and endorsing participation in, a practice over which they themselves may be conflicted. (Rom. 14)

Halloween for me as a child was not a wholly positive experience. For most, perhaps, it was harmless and fun, but I had some sort of sensitivity and felt a strong threat of fear & evil in the "scary" aspect. I sensed an "occult" undercurrent, even though my family participated "normally" like everyone else in the neighborhood & at school. I imagine that there are others, perhaps not many, but some, with this same susceptibility, and that's the reason for my concern. I do believe that current practices, if long removed and now a hodgepodge, still originate with ancient superstitious practices and ill pranks, and I'm not sure it's wise to ignore that aspect completely.

(FWIW, I have come around to allowing my kids to trick-or-treat with their friends in a neighborhood where they know a lot of people. They have a great time, of course. Yet we have also discussed the holiday together, and they are aware of the history of All Saints', which our church celebrates as well as Reformation Day.)

Great post!!

It disturbs me that so many can get bent out of shape about Halloween but on matters that are worth getting upset about like the doctrine of justification and evangelicals slipping into Rome's arms again thinking its just a "little" matter . But that's what happens when you have a mass of people unaware what the reformation was all about and who's depth of doctrine comes from Hybel's,Warren and the influence of Colson with ECT foolishness. Sad , truly sad.

Excellent post. I grew up Lutheran too, and I don't recall any pastor who had a stance on Halloween. My current church (non-denominational) does Trunk or Treat. It seems to draw lots of people in the neighborhood who don't go to church.

Yes, people are not learning from the churches and then are not instead teaching themselves. I think most of them would be very willing to go back to the times before the Reformation. They want to be spoonfed milk instead of getting up and grabbing the meat for themselves.

We don't participate in Halloween. After I became a Christian, all I had to do was walk into a store and see the displays and know that Halloween does not glorify God it glorifies Satan. Our kids do dressup and they do go to a Harvest party that is put on by churches for the community. But we don't celebrate Halloween. The Bible says in everything we do we are to glorify God and we feel we can participate this way and bring glory to our Lord instead of the enemy.

Thank you for this!

Thank you Bonnie and Dona

Halloween is a more honest holiday than Christmas which, IMO, is the most dishonest holiday of them all.

Halloween - it's all up front. Candy and dressing up. Done in one night, then over. We all know exactly what it's about. It's not about celebrating Satan, or evil. It's about getting the best candy, or coming up with the most creative costume. It's Theatre In the Streets.

Christmas - it's not really about Christ at all. It's got pagan origins, too. It's about greed, marketing, and boosting the economy. Phony baloney. Plus, it's the most stressful time of year for many. If you really want Christ in Christmas, jettison everything else, then I might start to take it seriously.

Great article. Halloween is a lot different today than it was 40 years ago in my day though (actually it is the second biggest spending holiday after Christmas!)

"I cite the example of my own childhood at church not as a justification to celebrate Halloween - it's not an argument. I offer it as an illustration that participating in Halloween doesn't negate sound Christian living and coincided comfortably with serious Christian living."

The danger in drawing a conclusion based on one example should be quite obvious. I would simply ask: if you lived in a cul-de-sac of hindus (or more realistically lived in India), would you condemn or condone Christians lighting up their house for Diwali? If condemn, then why not Halloween; if condone, then what if any practice is a Christian prohibited from indulging in?

Hi kpolo:
I responded to your last comment on the last Halloween thread. I don't know if you read it - you didn't respond. Again, with your same example: comparing Halloween with the lighting of lamps for Diwali is not a valid comparison for the reasons I stated on the other thread.

Perry said:
>>"If you really want Christ in Christmas, jettison everything else, then I might start to take it seriously."

Good word: jettison. (However, it's "cool" factor doesn't really enhance your point.)

You tell "me" to jettison everything YOU will take Christmas seriously.

This is the logic of an elementary-aged child: misplaced/misdirected stone-throwing to justify one’s own actions/behaviors/beliefs.

Are you somehow experiencing Christmas vicariously through the practices of your comment's readers?

You don't take Christmas seriously because others emphasize things about the holiday that you object too?
Seems like you're missing the boat here, Per. However one wants to commercialize/pervert Christmas...does not, for a single second, interfere nor affect how I (and my family) practice its celebration.
There are hundreds of things, ideas, practices a person can acknowledge honestly when others fail to do so. You’re grasping at straws. Blaming the culture for your not taking Christmas seriously? That's really all on you, Perry.

Sure it's highly commercialized, and there are greedy corporations and greedy kids. Some of the elements we see have "pagan" origins...yeah, yeah, that's pretty tired. Christ's birth is what we (me and mine) acknowledge and lift up this time of year. Hmm...How do I do that with all the commericialization and “phony baloney”? Am I superhuman?

Or....maybe I just have the ability to make an independent decision without defaulting to the misconceptions or shortcomings of the culture(s).

Why does the rampant commercialization have to impact my willingness or ability to lift up Christ? Answer: It doesn't.

Don't play the victim here, dear Perry.

It's a bit childish that you are attempting to justify your behavior towards Christmas by leveling criticism towards how others handle it. Your parameters are way off keel.

As for me, Perry...I rarely make the mistake of expecting too much from society and culture by way of hopeful behavior. However, my expectations for myself are wholly different...and I am, likewise, accountable for them.

Maybe your comment is simply for fun, in which case I apologize for every single one of my remarks to you...

Are your geniunely willing to say "Bah, Humbug! You guys aren't doing it I'm not doing anything either."

How seriously Perry will take Christmas...?

...That's not on anyone but Perry.

Now, now, David, I was being mildly facetious, yes.

Of course I believe we are ultimately responsible for our celebration/non-celebration/alternate celebration of holidays.

Culturally, though, I believe it's all top-heavy and since I am a family man with kids, I am caught up in it though I really kind of despise it. And yes, I am weak for going with the flow at Christmas. I don't care how many Jesus-in-the-Manger cards I send out, I'm still a sell-out.

My point (lost in my meandering) was a reaction to Christians who pooh-pooh Halloween for being "satanic" while upholding the pagan-inspired trappings of Christmas. My point was that Halloween is a more honest holiday because it doesn't try to hide its intentions, while I believe Christmas does.

I had just read a typical, American-Evangelical editorial in my local paper by a Calvary Chapel pastor who trotted out the same-old "Halloween celebrates witches" drivel. It got under my skin.

Christmas is tiring. Halloween is exhilarating. Long live the Universal Monsters! Karloff, Lugosi, and Chaney shall not die ! :-)

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