Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Where in "Hell" is Halloween???

Now that I've gotten your attention, let me rush to say that this was not just some preacher tastelessly taking an opportunity to curse. I am actually having some significant struggles with the idea of Halloween and the debates that surround it. Over the last several years I have been approached and/or challenged by those that question any Christian's acknowledgement of Halloween as an official "holiday." Well I can say that their argument is, at the very least, worth consideration. It has been said that Halloween has Paganistic origins and should not be even remotely entertained by those who call themselves followers of Christ. The implication is that only devil worshippers and satanist observe Halloween.

Well, I am not suggesting that I am a promoter of Halloween and it festivities. I have done considerable research as to the origin of the day itself. However, I believe anyone else who has been on such pursuit may have come to the same confused conclusion that I did. I wanted to glean my OWN resolve as to how I should feel about the day. I mean, I consider myself a faithful follower of Christ. I would like to think that I love the Lord with my whole heart. However, I wanted to know if I was on my way to Hell, so to speak, for allowing my children to go "trick or treating" in years past. The bottom-line is that I couldn't come to such a conclusion. Which causes me to ask the question, "Where in Hell is Halloween?" I mean really??? It began as the Celtic's Samhain (pronounced sow-in), transiting into the Roman's Feralia, then to Catholicism's "All Hallow's Eve." The fact of the matter is that there are so many implications as to how the day started. Yes, that origin does point to some secular dispensation. However, what "holiday" do we celebrate in America that doesn't? Even Christmas and Easter have some Paganistic influences as relates to it's historical progression.

I think my point is this... (Before I lose you totally)

I think that ALL holidays, when treated abrasively, have questionable points and practice. But, when we were children, it WASN'T really that DEEP. When we cut up one of Grandma's old wigs, put holes in some old clothes, adorned ourselves in make-up and went to get candy.... It wasn't about cults and Satan at all. We were just a couple of kids having a good time and getting some free candy. Is it possible to have still been wrong? Of course... But, why are Christians debating about such trivial matters when people are still dying and going to hell for lack of hearing and understanding the gospel message? We are certainly not reaching them by damning and dooming them to hell for wearing costumes and passing out candy. They need to hear about a man named Jesus. "Where the spirit of the Lord is there is liberty." Why then do we make the idea of Christianity so restrictive? Christians would rather judge one another for something as simple as "why would you pass out candy on Halloween?"

I've seen, first hand, the "wiles of the devil." I have witnessed him ravage through the lives of individuals, families, churches, and communities. I know I have A LOT of spiritual maturing to do myself, but I don't think Halloween is our biggest threat. I think the legalism that under-girds argument and debate about it in Christendom is a greater ill.

We are offering our youth and community an "alternative" to the traditional Halloween activities. We are calling it "Hallelujah Night." We will have moonwalks, food, games, candy and the works... I pray that this community outreach effort will be instrumental in bridging the gap between our congregation and those who surround us. I also pray that we (The Ship) will not be ridiculed by the "holly rollers" that have nothing better to do than criticize other Christians for what they are ATTEMPTING to do. Friendship... I applaud your "mind for ministry" and look forward to winning a generation for Christ as we work together.


At 3:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We applaud you Pastor Pullam for being such a Spiritual and Studious man of God. Your post was very well thought out and extremely insightful. You're absolutely right; we have much bigger issues than dwelling over whether or not to give out a few pieces of candy. We are to be fishers of men not "condemners" or "finger pointers" and I believe that a "Hallelujah Night" it a great way to cast out our nets, minister to the community and spread the good news of Jesus Christ. God Bless you Pastor. We've got your back and we're proud of what you're trying to do in the life of "The Ship". You are truly a blessing and we thank God for you. Keep up the good work and remember, "The best is yet to come".

P.S. I thank you for letting God use you in such a mighty and magnificent way on Sunday. I, unlike so many others, can admit that I sometimes have a bad understand and so an addendum to my prayers is that God will Cause me to have a better Understand.
~Much Love
A shipmate

At 6:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is NOT that serious. Allow the children to have fun. Those who are having a good time don't even know the history of halloween or do they care. We see evil done everyday of the week and we have greater issues to deal with. I don't believe Satan worshippers confine themselves to one day of the year. Somebody had a birthday celebration today but the celebration wasn't done for the darkness of this particular holiday. Christians who are in the spirit of the day's festivities isn't celebrating in the same manner of a non believer. Heck, those having fun are doing just that, JUST HAVING FUN. People are going to hell for things a lot worse than wearing costumns and givning out candy.


At 6:54 PM, Blogger Pastor Kraig L. Pullam said...

Interestingly--I think it is worth noting that the very name Halloween has at its root 'hallow', which by all accounts stems from that which is holy and set apart. Whatever the case--though it did originate with the Catholic church, and fasting, etc.--I think I have drawn the same conclusions as have you. I think it is commendable to provide an 'alternative', as to the original thought of Halloween evolves from a season of Harvest and, surprisingly--OUTREACH! Oh how I wish that our church could have done such an event--though it is hard to do without our own land and facility. Maybe in the future. I pray that the even was a success and that this will be something that will continue to work in the future of 'The Ship'.


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