“I want to believe that all Christians are aware that Halloween celebration is demonic, and we don’t take part in it,” one Twitter user wrote on Saturday, Oct. 22. “It’s more than [costumes] and candy. It’s celebration of the dead.”
That tweet isn’t alone: Many people of Christian faith have religious objections to Halloween.
Then again, other Christians give Halloween their full-throated approval. “Celebrate Halloween. Ignore Satanic panic from the pompous pious,” tweeted Dr. Kevin Young, a pastor with Christ’s Table in Jupiter, Fla. “From the get-go, Christians adopted secular celebrations, infused them with new symbols and meanings, and embedded them into their religious routines.”
Let’s hear from other voices, shall we?
Why do Christians not celebrate Halloween?
As the Anglican priest and theologian J. Davila-Ashcraft wrote for Christianity.com in 2021, some Christian people believe that Halloween is a Satanic holiday.
In an op-ed for Charisma News in 2015, Jamie Morgan, a pastor of Life Church in Williamstown, N.J., wrote, “Setting aside a day to celebrate evil, darkness, witchcraft, fear, death, and the demonic brings disdain to God. Period. A Christian celebrating Halloween would be like a Satan-worshipper putting up a nativity scene at Christmas while singing, ‘Happy Birthday, Jesus!’ The two just don’t go together.”
But Davila-Ashcraft pointed out that Halloween has roots in the Christian holiday All Hallows’ Eve. “It is my opinion that there is still nothing wrong with dressing up as some silly monster from a movie and going door-to-door getting a bag filled with candy,” he wrote.
What does Halloween mean in the Bible?
The Bible “is actually completely silent on the holiday since it did not exist during the time the authors of the books of the Bible lived,” Davila-Ashcraft wrote.
“Anyone attempting to connect the holiday to some practice or observance mentioned in the Old and New Testaments does so only by ignoring or doing an injustice to the facts of history,” the priest added.
If I’m Christian, should I skip Halloween?
In a column for the Columbia Daily Herald, Stephen Rowland, who has a master’s degree in biblical studies, recommended that Christians make up their own minds about whether or not they should celebrate Halloween — and not judge others for their choices.
Rowland cited the apostle Paul, who “had a commonsense rule for matters like this,” including some Christians’ issues with eating meat (since meat had been offered to pagan idols). “His rule was simple — if it violated your own conscience, then don’t do it,” Rowland wrote.
“If you really believe that having a jack-o-lantern or a costume is somehow inviting evil into your household because of pagan associations in the distant past, then, by all means, don’t buy them,” Rowland concluded.
“But don’t level both barrels of your religious-convictions shotgun at your fellow believer because he/she doesn’t care about pagan associations of hundreds of years ago. To them, it’s simply having fun.”