What is Halloween? It’s growing in popularity every year in Australia and around the world, it’s everywhere. For weeks, the shops are filled with ghoulish displays and people becoming excited about dressing up as a skeleton or a spooky dead person. But why are they doing this and where does the idea come from?
Well, there was an old Celtic occult festival at the end of summer in the northern hemisphere called Samhain (saa wn) or the festival of the dead. The Celts were concerned that the spirits or ghosts of the dead might rise from their graves, play tricks on them, or take some of the living with them. So, on this night they wore costumes to disguise themselves as ghosts or one of the dead and burned bonfires to ward off the evil spirits.
Then more than a thousand years ago, the medieval Christian church incorporated this pagan festival with their holy day for the faithful who had died. Now the word hallow is the name for a holy person, or a saint. And All Hallows Day or All Saints Day is celebrated on the 1 November.
Now we know that Halloween is on the 31 October, the night before All Hallows Day. So, the word Halloween is the joining of two words, Hallows and Eve. Halloween, the ancient pagan festival of the dead, merged with the medieval Christian celebration for the departed saints.
Now what is remarkable is the blending of the seasonal, Christian and pagan celebrations into the flashy fright festival we see today. It is expected that this year Australians will spend around $159million and Americans a whopping $9billion on Halloween displays, costumes, pumpkins, candy and chocolate this year.
So, whatever the draw, Halloween seems to be here to stay as the costumes replace the ancient pagan Celtic disguises. But is Halloween just a harmless and fun celebration? Well, it’s a celebration that glorifies death, evil, darkness, fear, and demons and has been called the spookiest night of the year.
So, what does the Bible say about this type of activity, and should Bible-believing Christians celebrate Halloween? Let’s start by asking ourselves this: Is Halloween based on godly themes? Do the ghoulish Halloween costumes bring to mind feelings of peace and happiness, or fear, oppression and death? Well, the Bible doesn’t actually mention Halloween, but it does warn us against having anything to do with the occult, Satan and his demons.
Here’s what the Bible tells us in Deuteronomy 18:10-12. “10 Let no one be found among you who… practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord.”
Satan uses many tricks to deceive us. Halloween is candy coated poison and here are some of the reasons why we should stay away from this celebration.
i. Halloween has a pagan origin.
ii. Halloween and the occult glorify Satan and his evil angels.
iii. Halloween can give Satan a foothold in your life.
iv. Halloween is not uplifting, and does not bring peace, freedom and salvation.
v. Halloween promotes the idea that the dead have an immortal soul.