How Should Christians Deal With Halloween?

image1

About 33 years ago I was busy making ghost costumes for my 3 young boys when Betty Rich called and asked what I was doing. I was embarrassed to tell her. She was such a Godly lady, I thought she would surely be disappointed in me for allowing my children to participate in the holiday. However, I still marvel at her wisdom in the comment she made that day, “Sheilah, don’t make your children so different from the world that the world doesn’t want what you have.” I have heeded that advice through the years and applied it in numerous situations, always trying to find things we could participate in with those that might not believe as we do, thus having an opportunity to interact with them.

We chose to enjoy Halloween without even talking about the dark beginnings of it. On other holidays I have encouraged you to teach the history of the traditions of the holidays.  And if you would like to do that for Halloween, here is an informative link.  A good book that explains in simple terms how Halloween started and how Christians now celebrate it is Halloween: Is It for Real? by Harold Myra. 

If you want to try to give a positive meaning to some of the traditions, you can point out that the orange color is used to symbolize the vibrant colors of the harvested crops, while the black color stands for the death of summer.  You can choose to use the pumpkin salvation story while you carve your pumpkin.  But you can choose to just enjoy a fun harvest time of family, friends, neighbors, costumes, parties, and pumpkins.

We must stay aware that some of the things that go on at this time may go beyond fun and can cause fear in children. There are bad spirits in the world, but we don’t have to be afraid of them. The Bible says that at the name of Jesus they have to run away (Philip. 2:10 “so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,”)  We can use the name ‘Lord Jesus Christ’.

God has given us good spirits called angels to watch over us (Psalm 91:11-12 “For he orders his angels to protect you wherever you go. They will hold you with their hands to keep you from striking your foot on a stone.”)

Please check out Ministry to Children for great insights and ideas to help use Halloween to emphasize trusting Jesus.

 

Halloween – Enjoy the Fun; Talk about the Fear

 

I was busy making ghost costumes for my 3 young boys when Betty Rich called and asked what I was doing. I was embarrassed to tell her. She was such a Godly lady, I thought she would surely be disappointed in me for allowing my children to participate in the holiday. However, I still marvel at her wisdom in the comment she made that day, “Sheilah, don’t make your children so different from the world that the world doesn’t want what you have.” I have heeded that advice through the years and applied it in numerous situations. With that in mind, we enjoy the innocent fun at Halloween.

But some things that go on at this time go beyond fun and can cause fear in children. Thus, this is a great opportunity to use the fear to teach scriptures about the power of Jesus. You could start by saying that there are bad spirits in the world, but we don’t have to be afraid of them if we believe in Jesus because of 1 John 4:4 “But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won your fight with these false prophets, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.“

Emphasize this is why it is important to stay close to God because He is greater than the bad spirits. In fact, they are afraid of Him and the Bible says that at the name of Jesus they have to run away (Philip. 2:10 “so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,”) He said we can use His name to tell the bad spirits to go away (Mark 3:15 “and he gave them authority to cast out demons.”) Talk to them about the power of using the name ‘Lord Jesus Christ’.

God has given us good spirits called angels to watch over us (Psalm 91:11-12 “For he orders his angels to protect you wherever you go. They will hold you with their hands to keep you from striking your foot on a stone.”) All of Psalm 91 is about God’s protection – good psalm for us parents to memorize.

Choose at least one scripture to memorize with your children that they can quote when they feel fearful. Two that I always use with children are:
Joshua 1:9 “I command you—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Psalm 56:3 “What time I am afraid, I will trust in God.”

Tell them the story of when Jesus used scripture to battle the devil (Luke 4) Emphasize that there is power in the Word (Isaiah 55:11 “so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”)

Tell them that God doesn’t want us to be afraid (2 Tim. 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”)

A good book to teach children to use this holiday to celebrate God’s victory over evil spirits is Halloween: Is It for Real? by Harold Myra

Please check out Ministry to Children for great insights and ideas to help use Halloween to emphasize trusting Jesus.