Question: I live in an area that is steeped in tradition and religiosity, and people tend to think I’m a bit strange since I believe there is a spiritual element in everything around us, especially Halloween.  It seems that a lot of bad things occur around October 31st and I am wondering if Satan and his demonic forces have a stronger influence during this season?

Before addressing the spiritual aspects of Halloween, let’s consider the impact it has had on our country and our culture.  Halloween has become the second most celebrated and decorated holiday of the year—second only to Christmas.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) reports that Americans will buy more costumes this year than ever before.¹

  • Total spending on Halloween this year will reach $7.4 billion.
  • $2.8 billion will be spent on costumes overall.
  • $1.1 billion on children’s costumes and $1.4 billion on adult costumes.
  • Americans will spend $350 million on costumes for their furry friends.
  • Consumers will spend $2.2 billion on candy this year.
  • $2 billion on decorations for the frightful holiday.

Consumers will celebrate the holiday by:

  • Handing out candy (71.1%)
  • Decorating their homes and yards (46.7%),
  • Dressing in costume (45.8%).
  • Throwing or attending a party (33.4%— up from 30.9% last year).

These statistics from NRF are staggering.  Each year participation in the celebration of Halloween grows.  It has mushroomed far beyond the in-school Halloween dress-up parties and the evening activity of trick-or-treating door-to-door.  Halloween now begins early in October with indoor and outdoor decorations as well as parties and activities, much like the month-long festivities of Advent that lead up to Christmas.

Satan’s Influence on Halloween

The question before us is whether Satan and his demonic forces have a stronger influence during Halloween?  I suggest that Satan does have a stronger influence at this time because people give attention (money and time) to the dark side of our world. Satan’s strategies at Halloween are to tempt people to celebrate evil, death, and darkness. I believe Satan delights in his greater influence during Halloween. 

Should a Christian Celebrate Halloween? 

While Halloween can be celebrated in a fun, safe, and faithful-to-God manner, there is a spiritual dark side to this day and Christians must be cautious.  

 As Christians, we have been delivered from the power of darkness (Colossians 1:13) and we are people of the Light. Having been redeemed from the darkness into the light, and from the power of Satan unto God, we are commanded to walk in the Light:

1 Thessalonians 5:5  Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.

Having been redeemed from the darkness into the light, and from the power of Satan unto God, we are commanded to walk in the Light:

 Ephesians 5:8  For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

To Celebrate or Not to Celebrate Halloween?

As Christians, we have liberty in Christ (Galatians 5:1) to do many things, as long as it doesn’t involve sin or provoke sin.  We live in this world as pilgrims (1 Peter 2:11), but at the same time, we are also ambassadors for the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:20). All activities should be considered in light of how our participation in them might represent the Lord.  In all things, we want our actions to uphold our testimony.  Paul reminds us:

1 Corinthians 10:31  Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

Colossians 3:17  And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

Remember that celebrating or not celebrating Halloween should never be used to create division, or even disharmony, among brothers and sisters in Christ.  We should warn Christians who “cross-the-line” into the darkness of Halloween about the dangers of it, but always do so with kindness and love.  Encourage them to remember that they represent the Lord Jesus Christ in all that they say and do (Ephesians 5:1-2)…even on Halloween!  Remind them how easy it is to be influenced by others who walk in darkness.

1 John 4:1  Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God…

Jude 1:4  For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

Alternate Ways to Celebrate Halloween

 As Christians, we have been delivered from the power of darkness (Colossians 1:13) and we are people of the Light. Having been redeemed from the darkness into the light, and from the power of Satan unto God, we are commanded to walk in the Light:

1 Thessalonians 5:5  Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.

Having been redeemed from the darkness into the light, and from the power of Satan unto God, we are commanded to walk in the Light:

 Ephesians 5:8  For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

Many Christians choose to celebrate Halloween in a traditional but without costumes that depict evil. Other Christians use Halloween as an opportunity to hand out tracts, along with candy, to the trick-or-treaters (check out our Halloween tracts).  Still, other Christians have alternative events such as harvest festivals.  

However you choose to celebrate, be discerning in how you do so. And, be cautious of Satan’s greater influence at this time of year.

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(1) https://nrf.com/media/press-releases/record-number-of-americans-buy-halloween-costumes

Satan might have stronger influence at Halloween, but he has NO power over God’s children!

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