Some parents are different than others when it comes to Halloween. Some won’t let their kids go out for religious reasons. Others because they are afraid some of their neighbors are “not so nice people.” Some parents see it as an excuse to get rid of their kids for an hour or two. And other parents think it’s a great time to spend with their kids. Whatever parent you have/had, each one had a perfect excuse for their actions.

Once again before reading:

You need to pray and read scripture and come to your own conclusions.

– I will provide research, scripture references and things the Lord has shown me through discernment of the Holy Spirit, and even some controversial things.

-But this must ultimately fall on your own convictions with God. If you disagree with me, that’s fine. I would simply ask for you to respond below with why you believe differently. I would also ask you to be respectful and support your convictions with biblical references to why I am wrong. I don’t claim these posts as the “end-all-be-all” of Christian Halloween Perspectives. I might be wrong. So call me out if you see something.

Please say this prayer before reading further:

“Lord, open my eyes and my heart to see and feel your thoughts on Halloween. Reveal the areas I need to improve on, and replace them with your truth and love. Show me how You feel so that I may glorify You in all my ways.”

Dressing for Halloween

If you haven’t, please read Jordan Harrington’s article on this first. If you have, you know my thoughts already. But I want to address other issues. That includes dressing up as a demon, zombie, etc. When we dress up as something demonic, we don’t represent Christ. Ephesians 5 says, “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loves us and gave himself up for us…” Now, I’m not saying go out and get a white robe with a purple sash and get a wig and dress up like Christ for Halloween. That’s not my point. My point is we shouldn’t be dressing up as the figures Jesus came to abolish. He came to destroy acts of evil, anger, murder, etc. So the next time you think about dressing up as a murderer, Jason, demonic figures, etc., remember Jesus is directly against those things.

What about Trick or Treating and Festivals?

At this point you probably think I’m the Halloween Hater. To an extent you are right. Most of what Americans have made Halloween, I absolutely hate. But there are some good aspects to Halloween I think Christians should engage in.

Trick or Treating and Fall Festivals are the perfect times for Christians to be involved in the community. I want to give some quick testimonies of how life changing Halloween can be for people:

“Every year Halloween is our biggest community outreach. Hundreds of families come and the kids get to hang out and play games and eat candy and there is a 10 minute gospel presentation that they can go to at any point. This year it is some strong man power team thing. So it’s not like a anti-halloween bait and switch tactic. And with it being on a Wednesday we’ll be having a party for youth that night. All that to say our people celebrate Halloween and have a blast doing it because we make kingdom impact and who doesn’t love candy!” –Brandon Verderber, Young Adult Pastor at Woodlake Church, Tulsa, Ok.

“What other time of year do you know that over 100s of children will actually walk up to your door and give you the opportunity to love on them, give them candy and a tract? Nothing speaks more strongly to a child than a house with all the lights out that says, “Don’t come to our house.” We will always love on the neighbor kids at this time. Carve crosses in the pumpkins. We learned this from a children’s pastor.” Dale and Teresa Braughler, Leaders at Central Assembly of God in Houston, Pa

Using Ephesians 5 again, Paul says, “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” Halloween should be one of those  “make the most of every opportunity” days.

[Edited 2014] Last year for Trick-or-Treat I got the Youth Group to come out to the house of one of the leaders. They lived right in the middle of a hugely populated and trick-or-treat hot spot. So we set up our outdoor speakers, had a wheel where they could win prizes or extra candy, put our church information in the candy bag, had pizza and had an all around good time. It was a really rainy night and things didn’t go perfectly, but I’ll guarantee you those trick-or-treaters will remember the house that had all the lights, prizes and loud music and also remember that we were from a church right up the road. It was a great experience and one I will do with whatever future ministry I work with.

If local kids are trick or treating around your house, you can give out candy, cook hotdogs and marshmallows, serve smores, give out hot chocolate if it’s a cold night, the possibilities are endless. Give them an excuse to come to your house and see what’s going on and I’ll guarantee they will remember your house for years to come! But don’t just throw a party; make sure Jesus is at the forefront. You don’t have to give out corny tracts or say “Jesus loves you” 5 million times, but you could play worship or fun Christian music outside, you could pass out candy with tracts on them telling them about Jesus, but please don’t be corny about it. And if you do, make sure you have had a conversation with them. Don’t just randomly give someone a “Do you know Jesus?” tract if you have never conversed with them. The most important thing to do is build relationships with the kids/parents in the short amount of time you have. Ask them their name, where they live, who their parents are, etc., and be real with them. I would stress making some kind of food, this way they have to wait for a minute or two and it gives you the time you need to have a conversation with them.

Christians cannot ignore Halloween. It will be there whether you like it or not. But how you use your gifts the Lord has given you to make the most of this day will determine if this holiday can be used for Jesus or not.

Remember, Halloween is not inherently evil, it’s only evil when people make it evil. So why not go against the flow and make it godly? Why not make the most of every opportunity? As Eric Hammond and Dale/Teresa Braughler said, “What other time do people come out of their houses and go around the neighborhood?”

Make an impact, save a life!

 

About Justin

Justin is a lifelong student who loves to speak, travel, film, write, and coach. He has a goal of empowering others to grow closer to Jesus in practical and unique ways. After acquiring two degrees in Practical Theology and then studying in Israel for two years, Justin has a passion to help people read the Bible with a deeper appreciation in its original, ancient context. He would not be where he is today without his incredible wife, Lauren! While he's a pastor at heart, he's also an avid pizza lover, metalcore listener, and shot glass collector.

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