Thought for the Week
This Saturday will see lots of ghosts and ghouls on our streets – okay people, mainly children, dressed up as ghosts and ghouls.
Over the past couple of decades Halloween seems to have assumed a higher profile in Scotland than had previously been the case.
But where did it come from? America might be the short simple answer given by some people, and it is true that the higher profile now enjoyed by Halloween owes much to traditions imported from across the Atlantic.
However this is far from the whole story.
Doubtless many readers are aware that Halloween is a contraction of All Hallows Eve. All Hallow Day, or All Saints Day, has been celebrated on November 1 since 998AD and it celebrates the belief
by Christians that for those who die in Christ, death is not the end.
Over the years a tradition evolved where children began dressing up on All Hallows Eve. In Medieval Times this was known as “A Danse Macabre” and the intention was to mock death.
The Apostle Paul does something similar in the Bible when he writes “where O death is your sting?”
I don’t know whether or how you will mark Halloween. You may welcome all “trick or treaters” to your door or you may retire to the back room hoping that everyone thinks you are out for the evening! However as you see the “ghosts and ghouls” wandering our streets it is worth giving a thought to the view of the Bible.
This could be summarised as “death may be the final enemy but it doesn’t have the last word because Jesus has defeated it.”
If he was writing for teenagers today Paul might allow us to adapt his words to “In your face death -Jesus won!” William Wilson: Minister at Burnside Blairbeth Church