Wednesday, October 31, 2007

2 Cheers for Halloween

Halloween gets a bum rap in certain circles.

You know the complaint: "Halloween is Satanic." Or that Halloween glorifies the demonic. Or that children should not be dressing up as demonic characters. Or finally, that children should not go door to door, begging.


Do you know why people dress up in Halloween costumes? Oh, I'm not suggesting that you should ask the kids coming to your door tonight. They do it because it's fun. And because people have often enjoyed dressing up in costumes.

But the reason why people began going about in disguise is because they were making fun of Satan. Making light of the demonic. Telling Satan and his minions, "Hey guys, the jigs up. You lost." And they did it because this is All Hallows, the day before All Saints, when we celebrate all the saints who have gone before us, all the saints -- known and unknown -- who provide inspiration and guidance and a good example to us who still plod through here on earth.

Can Halloween be used for bad purposes? Of course. So can wine, Christmas, Easter, chocolate, whatever. That these things are sometimes used wrongly doesn't mean we should get rid of them.

It likewise makes no difference that pagans, Satanists or other pathetic persons like Halloween. Who cares? As with anything else, these sad creatures are doing as Satan himself as always done, and because Satan do nothing without making use of God's creation, these people likewise mis-use Halloween. Just as they forget the birth of Christ at Christmas and just as they concentrate on bunnies for Easter.

So if folks want to have Noah's ark parties, or want to dress up as Bible characters, or want to have a church service tonight, that's perfectly fine. But they just can't make it a law. Because there's nothing wrong with dressing up and going door to door and getting candy tonight. Halloween's good. And I hope that you -- and those you love -- enjoy it. America's almost innate puritanism is always troubled when people have a good time. You're not going to make the puritans happy. If you did, they'd think that, too, was wrong. So just enjoy Halloween, eat too much candy, and remember that Satan lost. That's why we celebrate. God gives us all things richly to enjoy (I Timothy 6.17). So enjoy them.

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