Halloween is coming up and the stores are starting to sell their pumpkins, witch dresses and all that goes with this ‘festival’. Before the Lord saved me in a dramatic way, I was involved in witchcraft, so to me, Halloween has a different meaning than for many others. I don’t see it as harmless, just fun for children to enjoy. In fact, both the historical background as well as today’s practice of Halloween by witches has a very demonic source.
With Halloween coming up, I’ve received several invitations to share my testimony. Many people, including Christians, are not aware of the dark side of Halloween. I can understand that, because all the shops and commercials tell us, is it is just ’fun’! Why should we spoil that fun by disapproving of it?
Why we should be careful
Let me share some paragraphs with you from Derek Prince’s book Protection from Deception why I feel we should be careful.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:21, Paul told believers to “test all things; hold fast what is good.” Failure to test supernatural experiences is a failure to follow the mandates of Scripture. Jesus provided distinct warnings against deception by false manifestations that will be ushered in at the end of the age. Four of these warnings are recorded within twenty-one verses in the book of Matthew.
First, in Matthew 24:4, Jesus warned, “Take heed that no one deceives you.” In verse 5, He foretold, “For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ [Messiah],’ and will deceive many.” In verse 11, He warned, “Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.” Finally, in verse 24, He concluded, “For false christs [messiahs] and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.”
These warnings are not to be taken lightly. Anyone who disregards them does so at the peril of his own soul. Deception—not sickness, poverty, or persecution—is the greatest single danger in the end of the age. (Derek Prince, Protection from deception)
Now that is a sobering thought! We need to discern spiritual matters. If we don’t, we do so at the peril of our souls, for eternity.
Three things on Halloween
I won’t go into too much detail about Halloween because the internet can tell you everything you need to know. There are just three things I want to say about it.
- Samhain is a very old tradition and was originally a Celtic festival. When Christianity came to the West, the church tried to stamp out this celebration. However, this didn't work so the church tried a new approach and turned it into a Christian Festival: All Saint’s Eve or Hallows Eve (and if you say that very quickly, so understand why it’s now called ‘Halloween’). All Hallows Eve was a special mass to remember the saints. The day after Halloween (2 November) was a special day to commemorate all deceased people and to pray for their eternal souls.
- Halloween is still one of the main festivals for witches, although they call it Samhain. It’s the time of year where they say the distinction between the world of the living and the spiritual world is very thin, so it is easier make contact with the spirits of the deceased. The word of God tells us not to do so ( Deut. 18:10,11), but for witches, this night is full of spiritual activity. These witches openly disobey God’s Word and are actually inviting demonic powers to manifest themselves.
- With this night being the ‘open door’ for demonic activity, the Celts would dress in white and blackened their faces to trick the evil spirits they believed roamed the earth. By the 11th century, the Church had incorporated this into the tradition called 'souling', where children dressed as angels, saints or demons, would go door-to-door asking for 'soul cakes'. In exchange for these sweet cakes marked with a cross, they would pray for the souls of friends or relatives.
Personally, I don’t have anything against witches. In fact, most of them are of goodwill and the way they care for the environment could serve as an example for many of us. Yet, they are deceived by the spiritual world and this moves me. On the other hand, I am concerned for the many children that are taught to think lightly about demons by ‘fooling around’ with them during Halloween.
In history, the church tried to turn a pagan festival into a Christian festival (like they did with the Christmas tree and Easter eggs). To me, that’s like saying to a converted Hindu, he can use the altar where he worshipped his idols now to worship the true Lord. However, the Bible says to cut down holy trees, to tear down ungodly altars and completely remove them. As Christians, we should not compromise with paganism, but replace it with God’s original plan.
There’s only one Spirit we should connect to: the Holy Spirit. We shouldn’t try to connect with dead people, but with the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ. He is alive! Let’s hold on to this message in such a way that it will make Halloween look pale in comparison.
Supernatural signs and wonders
Let me close with another paragraph from Derek’s book, Protection from Deception:
The book of Revelation promises a specific series of supernatural signs and wonders that will signify the end of the age, but we must practice discernment as we anticipate judgment day, guarding ourselves against the devil’s tactics and holding fast to the true church, the bride of Christ. As we await the day when our heavenly Bridegroom, Jesus Christ, will return to deliver us fully from this present evil age, we must be set apart from the world.
When the Scriptures say 'world', they generally refer to the world system – the political and social order that rejects God, is ruled by Satan, and governs the minds and manners of people who have not been saved. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, God secured ultimate victory over the devil. Satan may rule this world, but his reign is fast approaching its end. Our deliverance – and God’s glory – shall endure for all ages.
With this in mind, we are to share God’s light and love with the world – not to be confused with falling in love with the world or seeking to receive its love. Focusing on our heavenly home, we must clothe ourselves with humility. We must put off all self-seeking efforts and motives. These only fuel our pride, a dangerous attitude that blinds us to Satan’s deception and makes us vulnerable. And we must cling to the cross, the same instrument that deliversSatan’s death sentence and secures our salvation through Christ’s victory.
(Blog by Joyce de Jongh, DPM-UK)