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Halloween Versus God’s Heavenly Will


A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
 
4 November 2012
 
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References:

Psalm 24:1-10
Matthew 6:10
Hebrews 9:11-14
Revelation 21:1-8

We just passed through the Halloween season.
 
Do you know how the holiday began?
 
November 1st is the traditional All Saints Day, and people used to celebrate the evening before (October 31st) as All Hallows Eve, which was a way of honoring the church saints.
 
This name was later corrupted into the name “Halloween.”
 
Did you enjoy all the Halloween decorations and celebrations?
 
Did you enjoy all the candy?
 
Did they give you a warm, Godly feeling?
 
No!
 
Why do you suppose that’s the case?
 
Well, let’s take a look at some Bible passages and see how they compare to the celebration of Halloween.
 
Do you remember how Jesus taught us to pray in what has become known as the Lord’s Prayer, as in Matthew 6:10?

10. 'Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
NASB

How many of the people who celebrated Halloween were actually praying for God’s heavenly will to be done on earth as it is in heaven?
 
As we’re thinking about this question and an answer, let’s take a look at a part of the new heaven and new earth that John was shown in his vision of the end times, as we are told in Revelation 21:1-8.

1. And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.
 
2. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.

The bride is symbolically referring to the truly Godly people who make up the church, and Jesus Christ is as the husband.

3. And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be among them,
 
4. and He shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall no longer be any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away." 

Let’s stop here for a minute and consider how much of Halloween actually fits into this heavenly description.
 
Think of the symbolism associated with Halloween.
 
We see decorations that look like dripping blood.
 
We see cemeteries, grave stones, skeletons, and the living dead.
 
Aren’t they all depicting death or dying or pain and suffering, which we just saw are totally opposite of God’s heavenly will?
 
In addition, don’t they also scapegoat cats, particularly black cats, and seek to bring them harm?
 
If there is no death or suffering in heaven, aren’t such people actually celebrating the ways of the devil?
 
We may see a few young girls dressed up as angels, but there seems to be far more people dressed up as witches and devils.
 
Jesus Christ and God’s heavenly will have no part in the holiday, the decorations, or in the celebrations.
 
So why do so many people do it, and why is Halloween so popular?
 
We think it’s because the attraction of evil is greater than the attraction of Godly things to most people, and this isn’t just for Halloween, for it seems to permeate throughout every day of the year.

5. And He who sits on the throne said, "Behold, I am making all things new." And He said, "Write, for these words are faithful and true."
 
6. And He said to me, "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost.
 
7. "He who overcomes shall inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son.

Are we really listening to these verses?
 
These are the only ones for whom the kingdom of heaven is prepared.
 
And since none of the animals devise ungodly things on their own, God’s kingdom is awaiting them, too.
 
So note carefully what happens to everyone else:

8. "But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."
NASB

I don’t know about all of you, but I sure don’t want to be a part of this second death.
 
Note the way the writer to the Hebrews expresses this comparison between the ways of God and the ways of the world in Hebrews 9:11-14.

11. But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation;
 
12. and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
 
13. For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled, sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh,
 
14. how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
NASB

Why?
 
Because the perfect creation became corrupted, and thus was no longer acceptable for truly Godly things or Jesus.
 
Now let’s take a look at Psalm 24.

1. The earth is the Lord's, and all it contains,
The world, and those who dwell in it.

Everything belongs to God, including all the animals, for they dwell in the world just as we do, and we all were created by God as living souls.
 
And even though the devil may rule upon the earth at this time, and cause all kinds of corruption, pain and suffering, the earth still belongs to God, and the devil’s rule will end one day.
 
Every day we pray that the devil’s rule would end right now.

2. For He has founded it upon the seas,
And established it upon the rivers.
 
3. Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD?
And who may stand in His holy place?
 
4. He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood,
And has not sworn deceitfully.
 
5. He shall receive a blessing from the LORD
And righteousness from the God of his salvation.
 
6. This is the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Thy face — even Jacob.
Selah.

We need to remember that Jacob was once a deceiver, but after he wrestled with God, and began to serve the Lord, even if not perfectly, God changed his name to Israel.
 
Think of all the falsehood and deceitfulness that is involved in the election and the way the political system works in our nation and others, which is far from the Godly ways described above.
 
And what about deceitfulness that goes on in the marketing of farmed animal products:

There can be no such thing as humane or happy meat, for those animals were not happy about their suffering and death.
 
There is no such thing as contented, or happy, or laughing cows; for no dairy cow, or for that matter any other living being, would want to be treated the horrible way the vast majority of these cows are used and abused.

So it seems that the people who are involved in these and other deceptions will not be allowed to stand in the Lord’s holy place.
 
Let’s go on…

7. Lift up your heads, O gates,
And be lifted up, O ancient doors,
That the King of glory may come in!
 
8. Who is the King of glory?
The LORD strong and mighty,
The LORD mighty in battle.

Let’s not forget that the Lord is also the prince of peace and a peacemaker, so the words chosen here by David may not have the same meaning, such as the use of the word “battle,” which most likely refers to spiritual battles against the devil.

9. Lift up your heads, O gates,
And lift them up, O ancient doors,
That the King of glory may come in!
 
10. Who is this King of glory?
The LORD of hosts,
He is the King of glory.
NASB

David recognized who the King of glory is, just as we should; and we should strive to be like Him, and not imitate the ways of the world with all its suffering and death, as David did at times.
 
We should be doing everything in our power to live by our Father’s heavenly will.
 
Amen.

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