Halloween is not too haunted for true saints. This is no night for God’s “holy ones” to run and hide, but rise up and revel in the power of our sovereign Christ. This is not the devil’s day, but ours. No concessions, no treaties, no retreat. No call to fear, but an invitation to feast.
Originally “All Hallows’ Eve” may have been an annual commemoration of the seemingly super-holy, the Roman “saints” (Latin hallows, “holy ones”). But under God’s kind providence, a monk named Martin came to our rescue when he went trick-or-treating on October 31, 1517, at the church door in Wittenberg. Eventually Luther labored with a horde of others to liberate God’s people from a host of medieval misconceptions – including the assumption that only some, not all, of Christ’s people are “saints” (Romans 1:7;1 Corinthians 1:2; and 2 Corinthians 1:1).
Claiming All Hallows’ Eve truly belongs to believers does not mean we celebrate death or darkness. Far from it. We celebrate our Savior’s victory over death and over everything demonic. We mark Christ’s triumph, through death, over sin and Satan. “Through death he . . . destroy[ed] the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil” (Hebrews 2:14).
As Christians, with open Bibles, we have a theology tall enough and thick enough for every ounce of Halloween, and every other day of the year. This is not a night to moan and fret, but to rejoice with confident smiles and treats in hand. And with open ears because the harvest festival is a ripe opportunity to rehearse precious truths — or teach them for the first time — about the undaunted dominion of Christ and what it means for us as his people.
So, Christian neighbors, join me in leading our homes and churches out of fear and into joy. The harvest is great, and Halloween is a striking foil — for teaching our kids, and reminding ourselves — of who we are in Christ. Read more…