Folks will transform themselves into all sorts of things on Halloween. Some people will transform into “cute and fun” things like princesses or super heroes. Others into witches, goblins, and all sorts of gory, scary things. Even at Christian Halloween parties.
Because we think, “How can we reach society if we’re not relevant?” And in our desire for relevancy, to fit in, and have society accept us — we transform. And not only on Halloween. But in many ways both large and small, all throughout the year.
“Religion today is not transforming the people – it is being transformed by the people. It is not raising the moral level of society – it is descending to society’s own level and congratulating itself that it has scored a victory because society is smiling, accepting its surrender,” (A.W. Tozer).
Tozer wrote this before 1963! I wonder what he would say today, in society which says there are no wrongs, anything goes?
This is not a post about the evil origins of Halloween. There are already plenty of articles out there, and you can study it on your own. Although just knowing its origins is enough to keep us from celebrating it.
But because we can’t help but ask, “Is that what we are here for? To fit in and do as the world does?”
And because we can’t sanctify something by tacking “Christian” on to it.
Sure, we can try. And as a result, for so many things, we’ve got a Christian version. Just because we’ve tacked the name Christian on it. Christian pens and pencils, balloons and puzzles. Christian calendars and shirts. And even Christian dating services and cruises. Now I’m not saying there is necessarily anything wrong with these things.
But dictionaries actually define Christian as meaning derived from or relating to Jesus or Jesus’s teachings.
So at best, these things are inspirational, as they can us inspire toward godly thoughts or behavior. But they are not of or derived from Christ or his teachings. Meaning that perhaps we use the term much too lightly, though in reality it is a weighty matter. In calling something Christian, we state “this is of Jesus Christ.”
The early church, I think, more fully understood this. They spoke of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The teachings of Jesus Christ. And the peace, grace, righteousness, and love of Christ. Things that pertained directly to him, or came from him. And they made such references with reverence and care.
Neither is this a “you should not celebrate Halloween” post.
Our personal convictions are strongly against what to us is a pagan holiday, firmly rooted in evil. But in the end, each person must decide according to their own conscience and conviction.
But please be careful in celebrating your Christian Halloween. Or doing your Christian whatever. Because simply calling something Christian doesn’t make it OF CHRIST.
That said, we do open our door on Halloween (if we’re home). We pass out candy to the neighborhood children. Kids that we love. Many of whom have been or are Mario’s students. We use it as a chance to know them, and their parents, more.
We don’t pass out anti-Halloween tracts. Those really seem more adapted to Christians, than non-Christians. But not real useful for people who don’t believe in any right or wrong, good or evil. It’s probably all a little over their heads, and hearts.
And we try to remember what kind of transformation God wants to see.
He’s waiting and watching to see us transformed into Christ’s image. And for us to get out into society and transform it. Which means getting involved, reaching out. And using every opportunity possible to do so. But let’s try to remember that to do that, we must remain a bright light, shining into the darkness. Not melding into it.
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect, (Romans 12:2).
“Religion today is not transforming the people,” Tozer said. It is being transformed by the people.”
I want to be transformed into Christ’s image. Because I long to transform society around me. Don’t you?