This week, our culture celebrates Halloween. That means so many different things to so many different people. To some, it means frightening themselves and others to the very core of their being. Having lived in Kansas City for 5 1/2 years, I remember all the HUGE buildings that would transform themselves into impressive places of fright. For others, it means dressing their children up in cute costumes, taking pictures, getting candy, and going to a party or fall festival. For others, it means avoiding this yearly event all together, as a protest and decision to abstain from pagan and satanic practices.
Many people fall into many different places on this topic. To this extent, the purpose of this blog is not to criticize or condemn. The purpose of this blog is to inform and allow people to make informed, Godly decisions. Personally, I do fall on a side of this topic. I fall on the side of redeeming culture for the sake of the Gospel. Meaning-taking something that is important in the culture, redeeming it, and using it to advance the Kingdom. As I read the scriptures, I see both Jesus and Paul doing this all the time. I love how John Piper sums this topic up in the video below.
Here are a few resources I have found or been presented with that will get you to think. I don't agree with them all, as they are from some differing points of view. But the point is not to argue on this issue. It is to make educated decisions-and it's ok if we differ on certain convictions on these issues-if at the end we believe that Jesus is supreme.
Here is a blog entitled "10 Reasons Why I Kissed Halloween Goodbye". The writer uses much scripture to back up her point, and really does a good job of defending her view.
Here is an article entitled "When Jesus Haunts Your Halloween". The writer essentially suggests here that Jesus is bigger than anything Satan can muster up.
Here is an article entitled "Sent Into The Harvest: Halloween On Mission". The writer goes all out, saying that we should use the opportunity in the culture to make the Gospel known.
These are just an example of some of the differing thoughts running out there about Halloween.
For my family-which consists of a husband, wife and dog right now-we are going to use this evening for the Glory of God. We are going to love our neighbors. We are going to give out GOOD candy, and not the cheap stuff. We are going to set up a big screen and pay the Charlie Brown Great Pumpkin outside. We are going to interact with our community. We are going to use what's going to happen anyway, and insert Gospel intentionality in it. We are not worshipping Satan, but doing quite the opposite when we do. We are going to love our neighbors, in the face of what some say is an "evil" night, for the glory of God. (and we are going to dress our dog up like a lady bug).
For the Glory of God.
Matthew is 34 years old and currently lives in St Louis, Missouri with his wife Leslie. He serves as the Associate Pastor at The Groves Church, in Webster Groves, Missouri.