Should Christians celebrate Halloween?

It’s the spookiest day of the year! Tonight the streets will be filled with little ghosts and goblins all searching for one thing: candy. And with Halloween come a lot of questions for Christians. Is it OK for a Christian to celebrate Halloween? Is Halloween a harmless and fun holiday? An evil, occultic event that should be avoided? What’s a Christian (particularly a Christian with young kids who want their fair share of Halloween candy) to do?

There are several good articles around the community on Halloween and its spiritual significance (or lack thereof). James Watkins has written some useful material on the subject: see his 2005 essay Should Christians Celebrate Halloween? It covers Halloween history and provides a well-thought-out perspective that draws on the writings of the Apostle Paul. Watkins has written articles about several other Halloween-ish topics like ghosts and Harry Potter.

And if you’re looking for a thorough historical perspective, you can’t do better than Christian History Institute’s overview of Halloween, from its pagan roots to its modern incarnation. At the end of the essay is a point/counterpoint pair of articles presenting two different approaches to the question of “should Christian celebrate Halloween?”.

And finally, there’s been some good discussion (and a poll) about Christians and Halloween over at the ThinkChristian blog. So whether you’re dressing up and going trick-or-treating tonight or are staying indoors and avoiding all the creepiness, take a few minutes to think through the questions raised by these articles!

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