Every October 31, parents face a number of questions about Halloween, such as, "Should
we allow our children to attend Halloween parties?" , “Should we answer the door
and give out sweets ? “, or “should we allow our children to dress up and go out
begging ?”. Without a sufficient knowledge of Halloween's history and what the
Bible says, it is difficult for a Christian to adequately answer these and other
questions about participation in Halloween.
The celebration of what we know as Halloween dates back to before the time of Christ.
In the Celtic countries the Druids set aside October 31 to honour Samhain, the lord
of the dead. When the Romans conquered the Celts, they combined the festival to
Samhain with their own festival honouring Pomona, the goddess of fruit and trees.
Despite the prevalence of Christianity this pagan rite continued. The Irish held
parades to honour Muck Olla, one of their gods. A leader wearing a white robe and
an animal head marched at the head of the parade. Those who followed him asked for
food to help celebrate the October 31 festival, punishing farmers who refused to
In the year 834 Pope Boniface IV moved the church feast of All Saints' Day (also
known as All Hallows' Day) from May to November 1 to counter this growing pagan rite.
October 31 naturally was called All Hallows' Evening - eventually abbreviated to
Even with this background in paganism Halloween appears to grow each year. School
parties, the media, commercialism and peer pressure all serve to make Halloween a
fun and enjoyable time in children's eyes. Parents can face extreme difficulty in
deciding what their family should do about the annual celebration.
Considering Halloween's origins, it is not difficult to establish a Scriptural position.
Deuteronomy 18v.9 states: "When thou art come into the land which the Lord your
God gives you, you shall not learn to follow the abominable practices of those
As you seek to make a firm decision regarding participation in Halloween, it is important
to keep in mind that believers are called to:
1. Be different: Romans 12v 2 "do not be conformed to this world:”
2.Be obedient and holy: 1 Peter 1v 15 “You shall be ye holy; for I am holy."
3. Put God First: James 4v 4 “Whoever wishes to be a friend of this world makes
himself an enemy of God”
The Specific answer to the question is something which each individual must decide
for themselves. However I hope by this brief summary you can see the way forward
K V Beaumont FCMI