June 2017           "A Journal of Biblical Understanding"           Volume 14           

(Daniel 4:25)
" ... and seven times shall pass over thee, till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will."


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HALLOWE'EN ...
What's It Really All About?

 I noticed a skeleton hanging in a tree during my morning walk the other day. At first, I thought maybe I should go up, ring the bell, and inform the occupants that some poor guy had died, and been left hanging in their tree. Not really—it took only a microsecond to recognize the ghastly spectacle as just another "harmless" attempt at spooky Hallowe'en humor; the neighborhood decorations everyone expects.

Harmless? Humor? Hallowe'en, with an apostrophe?

Have you ever wondered WHY you do the things you do—WHY people celebrate death, demons, Satan, witches, ghouls, monsters, ghosts, goblins, poltergeists, skulls and skeletons, spells, the occult, spooks, creeps, black cats, jack o' lanterns and Samhain, "Lord of the dead"?

"Oh, it's just harmless fun!" they say.

First, though, about that apostrophe. Most people spell it "Halloween," dropping the apostrophe. The apostrophe belongs there, because the word comes from two words, "Hallowed evening," or "The Evening of All Hallows," or "all saints." You see, the ancient Roman Catholic Church "canonized" hundreds of "saints." Actually, the term means nothing more than any person who is a Christian; in the Bible, all Christians are called "saints," but the term was perverted by ancient clerics to mean a really specially RIGHTEOUS Christian; an elevated rank of "holiness" that was usually never conferred or recognized until after the death of the so-called saint. Each saint was given a day; or the day was named after the saint. Many Catholics do not celebrate their own birthday, but the day of the birth of the "saint" after which they may have been named. When the calendar finally filled up (for example, Pope John Paul II has "canonized" 280 people as "saints" during his reign alone), and there were no more days which could be named after "saints," the Catholic church decided to pick a day which was already widely known, and celebrated, as a special harvest festival to the pagan god of fruits and nuts, Pomona, which fell on November 1st. This was common practice—to select a date on the pagan calendar which was already a well-known pagan celebration, and then "adapt" to it some alleged "Christian" custom, which pagans could readily accept.

That day became "All Saints Day," or the day of "All Hallows."

But back then, just as in the Hebrew calendar of today, the days began at the previous sunset. So the "evening," or the beginning of "All Saints Day" became the "Evening of all hallows," or, for short, "Hallowe'en." The apostrophe has been dropped in recent times.

Why do many Baptists, Methodists, or Episcopalians celebrate purely Catholic customs, which antedate Christianity itself by thousands of years? To most, it simply does not make any difference. Millions see no harm in cavorting about dressed like a demon, or a mummy, or a skeleton; see no harm in celebrating so-called "Christian" holidays with all the accoutrements of paganism. One might as well ask why people keep Christmas, with its symbols of tree worship, eggs and orbs, the holly wreath and mistletoe. Actually the Word of God condemns both.

Hallowe'en has its origins in purely pagan mythology. No wonder it is the most important day to Satanists and those dabbling in the occult. First, it is based entirely on the notion that Satan, or "Samhain," as the pagan Druids called him, who was "Lord of the dead," and who had consigned the "departed souls" of the loved ones of the celebrants to inhabit, say, the body of a mouse or a rat during the past year, could be induced into giving the soul of the loved one a "lighter sentence" in the ensuing year, say, in the body of a cat!

Since the Druids taught that the night of the eve of Pomona, or Hallowe'en, was the one night of the year when spooks, goblins, demons, ghosts, ogres, poltergeists, witches and the like were most likely out and about, they sought to spook them away by lighting "bonfires" (the "bon" in "bonfire" just as in "hot cross bun" comes from bous originally; Horus, or Nimrod—the sun god), or by carving a leering face in a pumpkin, placing a lighted candle inside, and placing it in a window. Offerings of food were left outside, hoping to placate wandering demons.

So, today, "Christian" people allow their children to dress up like any of the hideous caricatures of demons (or perhaps a Nixon or Reagan mask), and act out the parts of the demons by chirping "trick or treat" to residents in their homes. The vernacular is "Pony up, or I wreck the joint!" Thus, children are taught extortion and blackmail at a very early age; the childish "protection" racket is alive and well.

In past years, parents have been warned to carefully inspect the "treats." Demonic, calloused individuals have placed needles and razor blades inside of apples; have put LSD or "angel's dust," powerful hallucinogens which are capable of destroying brain cells, in candy; have even laced candy with arsenic or strychnine.

Last year, a nurse working in a Nashville hospital said kids were going to ever more bizarre extremes in order to "feel the thrill" of Hallowe'en. Throwing rolls of toilet paper into a neighbor's trees, defacing homes with spray paint, or setting fires was not enough. Now, the kids are deciding to get serious. Commenting on how hospitals see more admissions over Hallowe'en because of "devil-worship kind of activities," she said "You see cases of self-mutilation, particularly newcomers to the occult who have participated in some kind of initiation."

Perhaps many have forgotten the kidnap-murder of several students who ventured into northern Mexico some years ago—Satanists had used them as victims in their satanic rituals. Horror stories of animal evisceration and even human sacrifice have hit the news in recent times.

So why do professing "Christian" people indulge in such a ghoulish, obviously pagan practice? Actually, most excuse it as "just harmless fun," and justify festooning their homes with symbols of devils and demons on the basis of culture—isn't everyone doing it?

In his book, Hallowe'en Through Twenty Centuries, Ralph Linton said, "The American celebration rests upon Scottish and Irish folk customs which can be traced in direct line from pre-Christian times. Although Halloween (sic) has become a night of rollicking fun, superstitious spells, and eerie games which people take only half seriously, its beginnings were quite otherwise. The earliest Halloween (sic) celebrations were held by the Druids in honor of Samhain, [Satan] lord of the dead, whose festival fell on November 1st" (Ibid. p. 4).

God commands His people, "There shall not be found among you any one that makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that uses divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
"Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer [one who supposedly foretells the future by consulting with the dead].
"For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord..." (Deut. 18:10-12).

"Learn NOT the way of the heathen," God commands. He says, "Come out from among them, and be ye separate," and "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him" (I John 2:15).

No true Christian with common sense, and a desire to OBEY God, would ever be involved in a hideous "celebration" of Satan, demons, witches, and death. Of course, if there is no God, it doesn't make any difference. But God does exist, and God clearly labels indulging in such demonic, evil, Satanic practices as a heinous sin.

No wonder Hallowe'en is the most important day of the year to the various Satanist organizations in the U.S. and around the world. Witches gather in their "covens"; animal eviscerations occur, and, horribly, it is known that some kidnapped children have been used as human sacrifices by devil worshipers.

Hallowe'en is condemned by God, and should be avoided by anyone who truly believes in the sacred Word of God, and who worships Jesus Christ as the Savior.

-End-



The Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association
P.O. Box 747
Flint, TX 75762
Phone: (903) 561-7070

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