Today marks a wonderful day in church history. October 31, 1517 is the day Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses on the church door in Wittenberg, Germany. To make much of Luther today I want to discuss Halloween? Why? Because Luther was known for mocking the devil, and that is precisely what Halloween is all about.
I am fully aware that within the Church there are differing views on Halloween.
Some believe that dressing up like goblins and ghouls and asking for candy at every door in the neighborhood is completely sinful. As a consequence for believing in the sinfulness of Halloween, some churches have therefore created events such as “trunk or treat” or had a “fall festival” to allow the kids in the congregation to have fun in a “safe” manner.
I am not one of these people.
Isn’t it a double standard to believe Halloween and it’s activities are sinful only to participate in an event at church where one does the same Halloween activities one does in the neighborhood? It is. Not only do I think this is wrong, I think it’s historically ignorant. All Hallows Eve was a celebration the Church invented to mock the devil and his minions by dressing up like them. This day would be followed up with All Saints Day on the following day to celebrate what Jesus did in creating His Church.
But, I do think that’s not the real issue at hand here, there’s a deeper idolatry. When you get down to it, I believe the heart that wants to participate in a “trunk or treat” or “fall festival” is a heart that wants to avoid non-Christians, the great commission, and being a light in the darkness among our lost neighbors. Rather than going out into the community to be a light in the darkness, or continuing to develop friendships and relationships for gospel purposes with our neighbors, we choose to do the “safe” thing and go to church.
This leads me to a question: should the church allow people to avoid the world by opening it’s doors more? No. We ought to meet for worship, we ought to meet for Bible study, we ought to meet for prayer, we ought to meet in small groups, etc. – these things are good, godly, and great ways to fan our faith into flame. But when the church opens its doors and seeks to create a “Christian-ized” version of normal world holidays it seeks to remove itself from the world and allow its members to delve deeply into isolated Christian bubbles. This is not healthy.
What, therefore, should you do on Halloween?
Do something with your neighbors. Invite your lost friends to do trick or treating with your family around your neighborhood so you can continue to get involved in the lives of the lost people around you. Bottom line? Don’t isolate yourself in a Christian bubble.