John 14:30 – I will not speak with you much longer, for the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold on me.
I stopped dead on the sidewalk, and did a double-take, staring into the bank window. Inside, a clown with a baggy costume and blue and pink hair was serving a customer. A second glance showed me that almost every employee in that bank branch was in costume. Of course, it was Halloween. There were also a few people in costume at my workplace.
Count me out. Feel free to think what you like, but I'm not joining in. Some might call it a harmless dress-up for children, but the respected Christian author Calvin Miller, in one of his books, has called this a festival for the Kingdom of Darkness. In his introduction to his book "The Screwtape Letters", C.S. Lewis asserts the Devil is real, and one of his aims in writing the book was to re-introduce the issue of evil to modern people. You can find references to the struggle of evil against good all through the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation.
Jesus spoke of Hell and the Devil. I think there's enough evil and pain in this world without adding any more devils – even if they are the costume kind. There are other things you can do. I've read about one church that had a costume party for everyone. The catch was, you had to dress up as your favourite saint or Bible character.
In John's Gospel, Jesus uses the hours of the Last Supper to tell his disciples much. He is only hours away from the cross, and He knows that evil is working on a cosmic scale against God's plan of salvation for all humankind. Jesus says the prince of this world is coming. That prince of evil has no part with Jesus, for He is the only person who walked on this earth, and was unstained by sin.
Christians are people of the light. We are told the flee evil and walk in the light. Life is made up of lots of little decisions. I've made one. No Jack-O-Lanterns for me. I'll use pumpkins for pies, not carving.
Prayer: Oh Lord, in a world filled with evil and darkness, help us remember that you rejected evil at every turn. Help us take our stand against the darkness, wherever we find it. It has been said that grey is the dominant colour of society. Might we see that some things are still best seen in black and white. Amen.