What Halloween Really Is and How It Can Change Our Culture For Good
It is with great displeasure that I get to read and weed through Facebook status updates that butcher what Halloween is and it’s real intent and origin. For most of my life I was not aware of what Halloween was, what it meant, where it originated or if Christians should and could practice or observe this holiday. Until recent years I remained in ignorance, not knowing or really wanting to know what this holiday was.
There is a common mindset, typically among new members of the church, that anything that is radical in comparison to the majority of Christians is more than likely Biblical Christianity. Now a movement towards “original” Christianity, if defined as how God and Christ desire for the church to be, is a great blessing that I am glad to see take place and even be a part of. However, this movement needs a proper understanding of history, argumentation and a reformed (not Reformed rather reformed) mindset. A mind focused on changing our culture, society and world through the gospel is a real Christian worldview. Christians should have hope in Christ; a real hope with a powerful gospel that can change the earth.
Look, I am all for separating from wicked celebrations, but there’s a question that must be answered, “Is Halloween really a wicked celebration?”. Wait, before you jump on your soap box, read this article. I promise it’s worth your time, if indeed truth is worth your time.
“”Halloween” is simply a contraction for All Hallows’ Eve. The word “hallow” means “saint,” in that “hallow” is just an alternative form of the word “holy” (“hallowed be Thy name”). All Saints’ Day is November 1. It is the celebration of the victory of the saints in union with Christ. The observance of various celebrations of All Saints arose in the late 300s, and these were united and fixed on November 1 in the late 700s. The origin of All Saints Day and of All Saints Eve in Mediterranean Christianity had nothing to do with Celtic Druidism or the Church’s fight against Druidism (assuming there ever even was any such thing as Druidism, which is actually a myth concocted in the 19th century by neo-pagans.)” (Jordan)
Now this information literally shatters the only leg that some have to stand on. The foundation of most arguments against Halloween is that it’s origins are pagan, still many people decide to celebrate this, putting glow stones, pumpkins and other decorations, they also give candies to kids. Yet, the word itself denotes a Christian theological implication, that of victory in heaven and on earth. An entire culture that celebrates the victory of Christ in the gospel is the result of discipleship by Christians who hold to a post-millennial worldview and had a proper understanding of victory in Christ.
“The Festival of All Saints reminds us that though Jesus has finished His work, we have not finished ours. He has struck the decisive blow, but we have the privilege of working in the mopping up operation. Thus, century by century the Christian faith has rolled back the demonic realm of ignorance, fear, and superstition. Though things look bad in the Western world today, this work continues to make progress in Asia and Africa and Latin America.”
Our society lacks a Christian culture. Christians have set back in their nice leather chairs, wrote about how Jesus will soon return and let our culture become secular by allowing unbelievers to rewrite the history of Christian holidays like Christmas, Easter and Halloween. The next generation of Christians are then taught this distorted view of their origins, thus unknowingly attacking the very thing the church built. It’s a common tactic that liberals use against Christians; deceiving their children to destroy what their fathers built.
“The concept, as dramatized in Christian custom, is quite simple: On October 31, the demonic realm tries one last time to achieve victory, but is banished by the joy of the Kingdom. What is the means by which the demonic realm is vanquished? In a word: mockery. Satan’s great sin (and our great sin) is pride. Thus, to drive Satan from us we ridicule him. This is why the custom arose of portraying Satan in a ridiculous red suit with horns and a tail. Nobody thinks the devil really looks like this; the Bible teaches that he is the fallen Arch-Cherub. Rather, the idea is to ridicule him because he has lost the battle with Jesus and he no longer has power over us. (The tradition of mocking Satan and defeating him through joy and laughter plays a large role in Ray Bradbury’s classic novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes, which is a Halloween novel.) The gargoyles that were placed on the churches of old had the same meaning. They symbolized the Church ridiculing the enemy. They stick out their tongues and make faces at those who would assault the Church. Gargoyles are not demonic; they are believers ridiculing the defeated demonic army. Thus, the defeat of evil and of demonic powers is associated with Halloween. For this reason, Martin Luther posted his 95 challenges to the wicked practices of the Church to the bulletin board on the door of the Wittenberg chapel on Halloween. He picked his day with care, and ever since Halloween has also been Reformation Day.”
Although I don’t agree with all Jordan says in his writings, I do however greatly appreciate his dominion-minded theology which plays itself out in emphasizing the grave error that most Christians make when demonizing the lawful. Jordan says exactly what I’ve always said concerning Satan, “Nobody thinks the devil really looks like this; the Bible teaches that he is the fallen Arch-Cherub.”. I see this happen constantly, whether it be towards an image, music or anything else that doesn’t fit the Hollywood interpretation of what angels and heavenly things really look like. “That looks like the a demon” or “That sounds demonic”…folks, Hollywood movies, paintings and other forms of media do not dictate what Satan and his demons looks like and sound like, Scripture does.
And Jordan, just to cover his tracks in defending other parts of Halloween, makes a cogent observation.
“We can hardly object, however, to children collecting candy from friends and neighbors. This might not mean much to us today, because we are so prosperous that we have candy whenever we want, but in earlier generations people were not so well o_, and obtaining some candy or other treats was something special. There is no reason to pour cold water on an innocent custom like this.”
Even if Halloween were pagan, there would be nothing sinful about collecting candy. No one knows another’s heart and no man can judge that. Is it wrong to dress up and collect candy in March? Of course not, it’s only by association to Halloween that Christians make these claims, depriving others of their Christian liberty and putting a yoke of slavery upon their brothers.
How much is enough Christians? Secular history is being taught to our children in both public schools and college universities, as well as being fed with a shovel through television and media. Look at our culture today and you must confess that the secularists are winning and it’s because Christians have been lazy, lacking in their duty to protect their Christian culture, their beloved children and their neighbors from damaging ideas and practices. Get off your butt, evangelize, write, dialogue, do something besides just work and take care of your family while making time for television and recreation. You’re called to be a light and salt, not to let others do the work for you.