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SPIRITUAL WARFARE

Graveyard2HALLOWEEN – WHAT DOES GOD SAY?

When my children were young and I was a new Christian, I struggled as a parent with the idea of allowing my children to participate.  I thought about it long and hard and decided that this was one “holiday” my children would just have to skip. There are other holidays rooted in paganism, of course, but no other can claim to honor everything that goes against God’s truth. My friends and family know that the night of Halloween is a major “pet peeve” of mine and I am strongly against celebrating it. Here’s why…

A LITTLE HISTORY

Although it has become a cultural tradition in America, Halloween is a holiday with roots in the Celtic pagan religion. For the ancient Celts, Wiccans, and modern day Druids, Samhain (pronounced “Sow-en”), or the Celtic New Year, marked the end of the harvest and the end of summer. It was a “harvest festival.”

In the 1800’s, wherever there were colonies of mixed European immigrants, they brought their pagan traditions with them. Some even became intertwined with Native American harvest celebrations so it is no wonder that our churches have fallen into the trap of substituting harvest festivals for Halloween.  Never mind that they are essentially one and the same!

After the defeat of the Celts by the Romans in 43 A.D., the Roman Catholic Church, as she usually does, incorporated pagan practices and created a hybrid pagan/Catholic observance.  November 1, known as All Hallows Day, All Saints Day, or the Day of the Dead, began on the night of October 31st.  For all who celebrate, the spirits of the dead and occult practices play a pivotal role in the celebrations.

According to some pagan authors and historians:

“In the mid 1800s, nearly two million Irish immigrants fleeing potato famine helped shape Halloween into an even more widely celebrated event. Scottish immigrants celebrated with fireworks, telling ghost stories, playing games and making mischief. There were games such as bobbing for apples, dooking, the dropping of forks on apples without using hands, and Puicini, an Irish fortune-telling game using saucers. Young women were frequently told if they sat in dark rooms and gazed into a mirror, the face of their future husbands would appear, however, if a skull appeared, the poor girl would be destined to die before marriage.”[1]

“Samhain was a dangerous time, like its successor Halloween, it was a period in which the conventional boundaries of space and time were temporarily suspended, and where the spirits of the Otheworld mingled freely with the living.”  The World of the Druids p. 36.

“During this interval the normal order of the universe is suspended, the barriers between the natural and the supernatural are temporarily removed, the sidh lies open and all divine beings and the spirits of the dead move freely among men and interfere sometimes violently, in their affairs” (Celtic Mythology, p. 127).[2]

THE MEANING OF JACK-O’-LANTERNS, BLACK CATS

According to an article by the Jeremiah Project:

“The Jack-o-lantern is the festival light for Halloween and is the ancient symbol of a damned soul. Originally the Irish would carve out turnips or beets as lanterns as representations of the souls of the dead or goblins freed from the dead.

When the Irish immigrated to America they could not find many turnips to carve into Jack O’Lanterns but they did find an abundance of pumpkins. Pumpkins seemed to be a suitable substitute for the turnips and pumpkins have been an essential part of Halloween celebrations ever since.

Pumpkins were cut with faces representing demons and were originally intended to frighten away evil spirits. It was said that if a demon or such were to encounter something as fiendish looking as themselves that they’d run away in terror, thus sparing the houses dwellers from the ravages of dark entities. They would have been carried around the village boundaries or left outside the home to burn through the night.”

Black cats had the reputation of being reincarnated souls with the power of divination.  In the middle ages, black cats were considered to be witches who had taken their form.

OUR CHRISTIAN RESPONSIBILITY

So now we come to the point of this article. What should our view as Christians be of this day if it is so steeped in the darkness and the very antipathy of Christ’s light?  I believe careful and prayer consideration of our participation is necessary.  It isn’t, as many have said, a matter of motive – “Oh, I don’t look at Halloween that way.”  I contend that it doesn’t matter how YOU look at it.  It does matter how God sees it.  Our culture and society is in a constant state of change, yes, but God’s Word never changes:

“Abstain from all appearance of evil.” (1Thess. 5:22)

Put yourself in the middle of the first century church and ask yourself if you would participate in a celebration of goddess worship?  What about a holiday which honors a foreign god?  Would the disciples dress up as the pagans did, take a portion of the rituals and call them Christian?  How does this honor the Lord? God tells us:

“Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them;…”  (Ephesians 5:11 NASB)

“Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD, and because of these detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you. You must be blameless before the LORD your God. The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the LORD your God has not permitted you to do so.” (Deuteronomy 18:10-14)

“Tom Sanguinet, former high priest in the Celtic tradition of Wicca (witchcraft) said “The modern holiday we call Halloween has its origins in the full moon closest to November 1, the witches’ New Year. It was a time when the “spirits” (demons) were supposed to be at their peak power and revisiting the earth planet.” He went on to say, “Halloween is purely and absolutely evil, and there is nothing we ever have or will do that would make it acceptable to the Lord Jesus.” [The Dark Side Of Halloween]”

The problem is, we are not to participate in any kind of holiday which is steeped in evil, glorifies Satan and indoctrinates our children into the occult!  To me, even harvest festivals represent pagan celebration, so why do we do Christians even want to participate?

“For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial?” [2nd  Corinthians 6:14, 15]

Conclusion:

One day out of the year, Satanists, Wiccans, Druids, and pagans of all sorts, come together in unholy revelry to honor Satan and invoke the spirits of the dead (which are actually demons.)  Innocent children, dressed in all types of malevolent costumes, join them by way of participation.  As a mother of three boys, I made the decision for them – NOT MY CHILD.  As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.  Instead, I kept them in and spent time with them in a family fun night.  Not to honor this night, nor to participate in any festival, but to let them know they were loved and appreciated and that I, as their parent, cared enough to keep them from harm – physical and spiritual. Our favorite games that night centered around the Bible (you can buy several good ones at a Bible Book Store.)  My children realized that they didn’t miss the night at all and they  even took holy pride in giving up their “candy night” to snub the devil and honor Jesus.  It became a defiant stand against evil that my children received blessings from.  You can’t protect them from every reference to Halloween.  School activities will be inevitible for them to avoid.  However, they will understand more about living for Christ if parents set an example of obedience to the Word of God.

Scores of children are being influenced by this celebration of evil in negative ways.  The world rejoices in the revelry of this night, but what kind of example are Christians setting when we join in the celebration of the dead. We are  teaching our children that witchcraft, demonism, Satanism and the occult are fun and harmless instead of teaching them to honor God and Him alone on every day (and night) of the year.

As our world grows more secular every day and God and the Bible are being evicted from every social institution and even the hearts and minds of men, what should our reaction be?

A quote from The Cutting Edge says it better than I ever could:

“In summary, Fundamental Christian pastors have been preaching for years against the dangers of celebrating Halloween, believing that such celebration would make it easier for young people to accept the premises of more hard-core Satanism later on. Many people, including other Christians, accused such pastors of “over-reacting”, insisting that all the Satanic costumes and other parts of the traditional Halloween celebration, was just simple, “innocent” fun. How many times have you heard them say, “Halloween is for the kids”?

Well, now the verdict is in, and sadly, it vindicates the pastors. The old adage is true, that “What one generation tolerates, the next generation embraces”. The situation we have just described, above, is a perfect example of this adage. The parents of my generation tolerated “innocent” celebrations of Halloween. Now, their children and grandchildren are embracing hard-core Satanic values and attitudes.

While we are lamenting the sudden increase in Satanic based TV shows, movies, and videos, plus games like Dungeons and Dragons, remember that it would not have been possible had the parents after World War II held a rigid, no compromising attitude against the celebration of Halloween.”

A FRESH START

Make a new commitment today, Christian warrior, to follow Jesus and not the customs of the world which have roots in the occult and Satanism.  Stand for what is right and if you have children, protect and teach them to stand against the pathway to spiritual compromise. Have nothing to do with the occult or anything that dishonors God and glorifies Satan.

We are at a crossroads today in Christianity and we have decisions to make – it’s one of the other.  Halloween signifies death – repent and choose life.

God bless you.

Many of the above references were taken from the Jeremiah Project web site.  I have quoted them and others extensively because on this issue we are of like mind. 

 I do not necessarily agree with other articles from these sites, but for a more comprehensive study, I would suggest going directly to these excellent sources for this particular article.

 References:

http://www.cuttingedge.org/News/n1033.html

[2] http://www.jeremiahproject.com/culture/halloween.html

[1] http://www.deliriumsrealm.com/delirium/articleview.asp?Post=410 (research only)

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THE HISTORY OF HALLOWEEN IN VIDEO

These three videos range from mild to heavy in content.

 Warning!

This video contains graphic images which may be disturbing to some

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THE BONDAGE OF HAITI

2010 January 13

tags: , , , , , ,
by christianconscience

By Victoria Day

Another devastating earthquake, this time in Haiti.  Obama, as well as other countries, has pledged humanitarian aid, but there is more to be done in this country than provide material assistance.  Let’s take a look at the country in terms of its religious demographics.“One common saying is that Haitians are 70 percent Catholic, 30 percent Protestant, and 100 percent voodoo,” said Lynne Warberg, a photographer who has documented Haitian voodoo for over a decade.

In April 2003 an executive decree by then president Jean-Bertrand Aristide recognized and sanctioned voodoo as an official religion, even though Roman Catholicism holds the title of state religion:

According to Wikipedia:

“The state religion is Roman Catholicism which 80-85% of the population professes. 10-15% of Haitians practice Protestantism. A significant yet unknown percentage of the population also practice Vodou traditions but these claims are denied by a significant amount of the strict Roman Catholic populace. Haitians that do practice both faiths however tend to see no conflict in these African-rooted beliefs co-existing with Christian faiths.”
Haiti was under the rule of French colonialism and forbidden by law (Code Noir) from practicing their religion – a spiritist/ancestor worship that had evolved from African origins.  Although the Roman Catholic Church did its best to suppress the practice of Voodou in Haiti, the religion thrived under the persecution.  During the Haitian revolution that began in 1791 and ended in liberation from French colonialists in 1804, a 60 year old schism developed among the Catholic clergy.  Unable to control the religious and political factions within the population, the Vatican began to withdraw its white colonialist priests.  Haitian priests, more tolerant of their ancestral religion, were ordained.  Because of the mystery practices of Roman Catholicism, it was easy to integrate the spiritism of Vooodou into it.  In fact, in Voodou, spirit deities are referred to as ‘miste’. It is estimated that most of the population continues the practice of voodou within the outward appearance of Roman Catholicism.

“…a process of syncretisation took place on Haiti (or Saint-Domingue as the territory was then called) where some voodoo loa (spirits) became identified with Catholic saints and some Catholic saints became loa in their own right.”  (Filip Borkowy, “Barrister or Bankrupt blog”)

Although there are many ‘sects’ of Voodou, it is common to begin the first part of its liturgical ceremony with a series of Catholic prayers and songs; the last part ends with the with the lighting of a candle and an “Our Father” and “Hail Mary.”  What is sandwiched in between deals with spirit possession and the worship of their pandeist deity, Bondye.  Because Bondye is considered unreachable, the ceremony is focused on contacting lesser spirits known as ‘loa’ or, as aforementioned, miste.

Although Roman Catholicism is listed as the state religion, the practice of Voodou is predominant within the country and it has incorporated itself into it for practical reasons.

From Haitiwebs.com

“Mostly for appearances sake, the enslaved Africans adopted Catholicism. Outwardly, for social appearances, they would practice Catholicism. This helped keep them out of trouble with the law as well as with the plantation owners. It also helped them gain social recognition among the Europeans. They would attend Sunday mass and take communion. No other choice was given them.

Yet whenever possible they would use the catholic rituals to carry out their own beliefs. Therefore, when dancing and singing was abolished, because of fear from Voodou practices, the enslaved Voodou believers would dance and sing to the Catholic saints, having them represent Voodou laws.”

As far back as 1722, there are cases of Catholic communion and the use of Holy Water mixed in with Voodou beliefs and rituals (Metraux, 45). There are also instances of enslaved people falling ill and calling for a priest to help them, thinking that receiving a sacrament will cure their illness. From these cases we can see that the intermixing of Voodou and Catholicism is a process which has been taking place for centuries.

Conclusion

When looking at Voodou practiced in Haiti today, it is evident that it is a unique religion. Originating with West African religions it has changed greatly. The use of many catholic symbols are evident as an integral part of Voodou rituals. Many Haitians practice both religions today. For these people there is no contradiction in such a practice. Each religion has its time and place and fulfills a different need. Since many people for centuries have had to practice both religions, Catholicism in order to be socially and politically acceptable, and Voodou in order to relate to their ancestry, it has become a social norm in today’s Haiti. As Leslie G. Desmangles notes in her book The Faces of the Gods, “Because Voodou was not allowed in the colony, they learned to conceal their practice of these traditions behind the veil of Catholicism.”

As you can see, the people of Haiti are steeped in spiritism and are lost souls.

“We’ve always been the majority religion in Haiti – it’s never been illegal to be a voodooisant,” said Mambu Racine Sumbu, an American voodoo priestess who has been practising in Haiti for 15 years.”

As we contemplate the effects of the earthquake and what our responsibility is toward the afflicted, let’s not forget the affliction of the souls of these people.  Pray for them that not only will they recover physically, but that God would do a great miracle in their hearts and deliver them from the bondage of Satan.  May God be glorified.

 

References: 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haitian_Vodou

http://www.haitiwebs.com/emagazine/content/view/376/155/1/1/lang,en/

http://barrister.typepad.com/barristerorbankrupt/2006/10/polish_haitian_.html

http://www.hauntedamericatours.com/

news.bbc.co.uk/2/low/americas/2985627.stm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Haiti

The following videos may contain disturbing images.  Caution advised

Plaine Du Nord Voodou ceremony

Haitian Voodou

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