Like every Christian family with young children who are inevitably going to be exposed to the culture of Halloween, my family has been thinking through and working out how we are going to help our 4 year old daughter walk through this season with a sound mind in such a way that protects her from the elements of this holiday that she’s not ready to deal with and helps her understand the reason for our hope in Christ in places that she is able to understand.
I came across this passage that I think holds promise for those seeking wisdom on how to handle Halloween in a godly manner, regardless of your convictions about Halloween:
Matthew 12:33-37 (CSB) Either make the tree good and its fruit will be good, or make the tree bad and its fruit will be bad; for a tree is known by its fruit. 34 Brood of vipers! How can you speak good things when you are evil? For the mouth speaks from the overflow of the heart. 35 A good person produces good things from his storeroom of good, and an evil person produces evil things from his storeroom of evil. 36 I tell you that on the day of judgment people will have to account for every careless word they speak. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.
“A tree is known by its fruit”: some believers celebrate Halloween by holding fall-fests, trick-or-treating, or getting together with family and friends to enjoy games and candy with their children. Other believers see danger concealed in the shadows of these activities and feel strongly that they should not have anything to do with these kinds of activities.
Regardless, both approaches can be well informed by this wisdom: pay attention to the fruit of your life on Halloween and what fruit you seeing being produced by how you engage this holiday.
Whether darkness or legalism and division, there are real consequences for how we engage this holiday and every believer should have the same priority:
Matthew 6:33 (CSB) But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness…
“The overflow of the heart”: pay attention to what comes out of your mouth during this holiday. Is your family growing in the grace and knowledge of Christ, sharing their hope in the Lord, and giving thanks from pure hearts for the blessings they have received from above? Are you growing in love for one another and learning how to build each other up in the faith and knowledge of God’s Son? Or do you see “darkness”, “cursing”, “terror”, “fear”, and “evil” coming out of your mouth or your children’s mouth(s)?
Fathers need to pay attention to the spiritual condition of their family and seek wisdom from God and godly counselors to walk their family through these kinds of situations in a manner that not only preserves their purity in Christ, but glorifies God to the world. Always remember, just because you handled Halloween in one way last year, doesn’t mean you have to approach it the same way next year.
Regardless of how you decide to handle Halloween – whether you abstain completely or participate with discernment – remember to pay attention to the fruit of your life and the overflow of the heart that you see coming from this holiday.