There are pros and cons about Christian parents allowing their children to celebrate this holiday. Some folks believe that Christians should not get together for any reason on this evening because it gives heed to Satan. Other parents think it is perfectly OK to allow their children to participate in all the season’s activities.
Travis Allen says:
There are several different ways Christians will engage in Halloween evangelism. Some will adopt a “No Participation” policy. As Christian parents, they don’t want their kids participating in spiritually compromising activities–listening to ghost stories and coloring pictures of witches. They don’t want their kids to dress up in costumes for trick-or-treating or even attending Halloween alternatives. Other Christians will opt for Halloween alternatives called “Harvest Festivals” or “Reformation Festivals”–the kids dress up as farmers, Bible characters, or Reformation heroes. It’s ironic when you consider Halloween’s beginning as an alternative, but it can be an effective means of reaching out to neighborhood families with the gospel. Some churches leave the church building behind and take acts of mercy into their community, “treating” needy families with food baskets, gift cards, and the gospel message. Ultimately, Christian participation in Halloween is a matter of conscience before God. Whatever level of Halloween participation you choose, you must honor God by keeping yourself separate from the world and by showing mercy to those who are perishing. Halloween provides the Christian with the opportunity to accomplish both of those things in the gospel of Jesus Christ. It’s a message that is holy, set apart from the world; it’s a message that is the very mercy of a forgiving God. What better time of the year is there to share such a message than Halloween?
Another author says:
Some churches think they should use ”Hell House” evangelism around the holiday to shock young people and scare them into becoming Christians. They walk people through rooms patterned after carnival-style haunted houses and put sin on display–women undergoing abortions, people sacrificed in a satanic ritual, consequences of premarital sex, dangers of rave parties, demon possession, and other tragedies.
He goes on to say that to shock an unshockable culture, you have to get pretty graphic. Graphic exhibits of sin and its consequences are unnecessary–unbelieving minds are already full of such images. What they need to see is a life truly transformed by the power of God, and what they need to hear is the truth of God in an accurate presentation of the gospel. Cheap gimmickry is unfitting for Christ’s ambassadors.
Here is a testimony by William J. Schnoebelen:
As a former witch high priest now saved by Jesus, I was astonished by how many Christians let their kids celebrate Halloween. Some churches even sponsor “haunted houses” and similar events on what is the Number One satanic “helliday” of the year. Halloween used to be called Samhain, and is still celebrated as an ancient pagan festival of the dead by witches all over the world. If you are a Christian parent, God has given you a precious responsibility in your children. Remember, their ability to resist spiritual wickedness is much less than yours. If you allow your children to participate in Halloween (Trick or Treating, costume parties, etc.) you are allowing them to play on “the devil’s turf,” and Satan will definitely press his home court advantage. You are opening up doorways into their young lives for evil by bringing them into a kind of “fellowship” with these ancient “gods.
The first tendency is to take a defensive action, and have some sort of party to occupy our Christian kids during that night, hoping that they will be satisfied “missing” what their friends are doing. But that’s only going half way. Remember, when Jesus talked to Peter about His church, he promised that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” (Mt 16:18) That indicates we are supposed to be taking “offensive” action, seizing the initiative and attacking Satan’s kingdom. How about teaching our children that Halloween is special all right. It’s that one time of the year that we can put the Gospel right into the hands of all the children (and their parents) in our neighborhood that we never got to witness to. It’s a night we can DO something to please the Lord while helping our neighbors, too! We can let our kids help hand out the candy and tracts. They’ll look forward to it.
My husband and I chose to use the three steps of change found in Ephesians 4:22-24 when we were teaching our children about this holiday.
Vs. 22 Put off-put off trick or treating-dressing up in costumes-giving Satan any glory.
Vs. 23 Renew your mind- renew children’s minds by filling their minds with truth-godly music-testimonies of God’s goodness and grace.
Vs. 24 Put on-replace ungodly activities with godly activities.
Change can’t take place unless all three steps are followed
When we started the church in Rhode Island, we didn’t want to give honor to Satan on this day. Because we understood that it was Satan’s plan to take all the glory away from our wonderful Savior on this night, we replaced the night with activities that brought glory to our Lord. We never allowed the children to dress up in costumes. We gathered the children together and explained how Satan was using this night to take the glory away from the Lord. We used our Bibles, flashcard stories, and puppets to refute Satan’s claim for this day. We used the night to sing praises to the Lord and to give testimonies that honored Him.
As a parent this season, search God’s Word ask Him, “Lord, what do You want me to do? Give me wisdom and show me what I should do as I raise my children to love and honor You.”
Facts about Halloween to consider:
1. The Druids invented the earliest Halloween celebrations. They were an order of Celtic sorcerers. The Bible condemns all sorcery and sorcerers (Rev 21:8; 22:15).
2. November 1, the first day of the Celtic year, was a feast day to Samhain, lord of the dead, by the Druids. But the Christian God is the God of the living (Mark 12:27)!
3. The jack-o-lantern, large fires, and apple bobbing also come from superstitious paganism, as most any encyclopedia will prove; but God condemns the use of religious practices from unbelievers (Deut 12:29-32; Jer 10:1-2).
4. The only cultures and societies that masquerade religiously as evil characters around fires at night are patently pagan, God-rejecting, devil-worshipping nations, which Christians are to entirely reject (Lev 18:24,28; Deut 4:6; 9:5; 12:29-32; 18:9,14).
5. When God wrote the laws for Israel, all witches and any related persons were to be put to death, for He strongly hates anyone seeking to devils and witchcraft rather than to Himself (Ex 22:18; Lev 19:26,31; 20:6,27; Deut 18:9-12; I Chron 10:13-14).
6. God specifically commanded not to learn the dark customs of the nations around Israel, including all forms of witchcraft (Lev 18:1-4; Deut 12:1-4,29-32; 18:9-12).
7. The idolatrous practices of pagans are devil worship, no matter what the worshipper thinks or intends (Lev 17:7; Deut 32:17; II Chron 11:15; Ps 106:35-39; I Cor 10:20).
8. The holy God condemns any observation of the religious traditions and customs of unbelieving pagans, even if you are doing it as a Christian to Him (Deut 12:29-32).
9. The Catholic Church whitewashed the pagan customs with a new name to keep their pagan “converts” happy. But Jesus Christ declared that church to be the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth (Rev 17:1-6; II Thess 2:9-12; I Tim 4:1-3).
10. The worshippers of God are to come out of Roman Catholicism by special warning from heaven (Rev 18:4), and Halloween is obviously a Roman Catholic holiday.
11. Halloween is an evil day originating with unbelievers and infidels, based on blackness, darkness, night, unrighteousness, and infidelity, which Christians should separate from and not even touch, if they want to be God’s children (II Cor 6:14-18).
12. Christians burn anything that has to do with witchcraft, for they are commanded not to touch any unclean thing (Deut 7:25-26; Acts 19:13-20; Gal 5:20; II Cor 6:14-18).
13. Halloween is a worldly religious celebration of pagan origin, and Christians are not be conformed to this world, but rather to be transformed (Romans 12:1-2).
14. When a devil or sorcerer meets God, he knows he is helpless; and one day God will cast all devils, sorcerers, and witches into the Lake of Fire (Ex 7:11-12; 8:18-19; 9:11-12; Mark 1:24; 5:7; Rev 21:8; 22:15).
15. The disciples of Jesus Christ and sons of God are to walk as children of light, not as the children of the darkness of this world (Acts 26:18; I Thess 5:4-8).
16. God’s true followers value His precepts on all subjects and hate any idea, opinion, or practice to the contrary (Ps 119:128; Is 8:20; II Tim 3:16-17; I Tim 6:3-5).
17. Halloween is popular with the world, which is evidence that it is an abomination to God (Luke 16:15). Friendship with the world makes God your enemy (Jas 4:4).
18. If you must have Halloween, God has offered you a simple alternative. Become a great celebrator of Halloween and reject Christianity, because He cannot stand you polluting His name with your hypocrisy (Ezek 20:39; Hos 4:17; Amos 4:4-5).
19. The past lives of Christians had enough excess and sin to cover a lifetime, so there is no need to participate in this worldly, wicked, and pagan celebration (I Pet 4:3-5).
20. Christians do not threaten “trick or treat” to anyone for any reason, so parents should not endorse such profanity (Gal 5:14; Eph 4:31-32; I Thes 5:15; Jas 2:8), and neither do Christians deceive others with masks, even for a joke (Pr 26:18-19; Rom 13:13).
21. Paul condemned a compromising brand of Christianity that loves pleasure more than God and has a form of religion without authority or true discipleship (II Tim 3:1-5).
22. The blessed God of heaven seeks worshippers to worship Him in spirit and in truth, according to the apostolic faith once delivered to the saints (John 4:23-24; Jude 1:3).