Other ways to have fun
HELLO and welcome to Thought for the Week. Today is Halloween. The name simply means “All Hallows Eve”. In other words, the day before All Saints Day, a day some Christians particularly set aside for thinking about those Christians who have already died and gone to heaven.
So where did all the stuff come from about associating Halloween with ghosts, witches, and even the devil?
Apparently, the association goes back about two thousand years to the pagan Celtic festival of Samhain.
The Celts believed that dead people and evil spirits particularly visited the living during Samhain, and they used to light lanterns and bonfires in an effort to scare away the spirits.
I’m not trying to be a killjoy when I say that we should not be involved with such things.
There are plenty of other ways of having fun than by taking part in such rituals.
And God makes clear in the bible that trying to contact dead people and evil spirits is wrong.
An example is Deuteronomy, chapter 18, verses 10-12:
“There shall not be found among you…. a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD.”
But perhaps you’re thinking, “Trick or treating is nothing like that. It’s just harmless fun.” Is it? Surely its very idea is evil.
It is saying, in effect, “Give us what we want or else!”
Do the things that are done at Halloween pass the “test” of Philippians chapter 4, verse 8? Here’s what it says:
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy — meditate on these things.”
May God help us all to do that, today and every day.
David Lamb is a South Devon-based lay Baptist preacher.