Halloween…Innocent or Evil?

–bySharon Merhalski

[I went to a large fabric store the other day and saw Halloween decorations everywhere! Why was this unusual? Because it is the end of July! Normally I would not send you a devotion this long but today I am doing so. I send this with a prayer that you will consider it and ask God to give you His wisdom. And then I ask that you consider sending this to other Christians.]

I wish I could tell you how deeply I know the truth of what we are going to present to you today. I wish I could convey to each of you the depth of evil that surrounds Halloween…and the number of saved and unsaved people who have gotten sucked into Occult practices because they participated in the ‘innocent frivolity’ of this holiday…only to realize later that it was not innocent, rather, it was evil.

In 1967 while I was in college (through a horoscope booklet I purchased at a grocery check out line) I got sucked into the Occult. I had been saved as a bus kid and knew almost nothing about Christianity except that I was going to Heaven. So, when the book told me God made the planets and this was the truth about how He caused each of them to affect mankind…I believed it.

Satan made sure I had many contacts in college with people steeped in parapsychology, witchcraft, wiccan, transcendental meditation, channeling etc., and God made sure that I did not get more than a couple of toes over every threshold people tried to drag me into. But I learned so much, and often I think I learned far too much, about Satan and his high and holy day of All Hallows Eve…Halloween.

Deuteronomy 18:10 “There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
18:11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.
18:12 For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.”

I am not going to attempt to write what has already been well-documented and well-written. Rather, with his permission I am going to let Pastor David Brown of Oak Creek, Wisconsin teach you why Halloween is Harmful. In addition his book on Halloween Specifics can be read at
Halloween Is harmful…I will state boldly that Halloween is harmful! Here are the reasons why.

• Many are exposed to Witchcraft and occult practices at Halloween activities
Like many others, I got my first exposure to occult practices at Halloween parties. My first experience came at a church Halloween party at our youth sponsor’s house. A group of kids went to the basement began talking about contacting the spirits and asking them to show themselves by table levitation. I had not been exposed to anything like that before. Some of them claimed that it really worked. I became uneasy left the party. My second experience came when I attended the Halloween party of a classmate. When it came to “game” time, we went to the basement. Carol asked us all to be seated in a circle and then placed a candle in the middle. She told us to hold hands and then turned off the lights. I asked why we were doing that and she said we were going to have a seance and to call up the devil. Not me! The last person I wanted to communicate with was the Devil. I got out of there.

I can tell you that many children get their first exposure to occult activities at Halloween. I have received communications from all over the United States testifying to that fact. In one school district a “real” Witch was brought in and told the children of the wonderful world of witchcraft including teaching them how to cast a spell. Another group of teens went on a school sponsored Halloween field trip and visited a channeler, which is nothing but a spirit medium who practices necromancy. They had a seance with the intent of contacting (channeling) the spirit of a dead movie star.

Last year I got a call from an alarmed parent. They had discovered their daughter’s diary and what they read blew them out of the water. She and several of her teenage friends were planning on being baptized into witchcraft on Halloween of 1997. Obviously this was not her first contact with witchcraft, but she and her friends had been reading occult material from the school library and decided Halloween would be a good time to form their own coven. Let’s move on to the next reason Halloween is harmful. Halloween is harmful because…

• It provides “an acceptable” opportunity for witches and other occultists to promote pagan beliefs
From about October 1st until October 31st, witches, vampires, Satanists and other occult minions can be seen and heard on TV and radio talk shows. There will be special features on witchcraft. Newspapers and magazines with be packed with occult related articles. Americans have been receptive to this over the years. But, what happens? That brings me to my next point.

• Children and even adults are conditioned to be receptive to occult doctrines and practices and are desensitized by the violence and death associated with it’s celebration
I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. Psalms 101:3

There is no better illustration of this fact than Ann Landers’ column that I came across while reading a newspaper in a restaurant one afternoon. The title of her column was Parents Must Tackle Violence. The parent wrote:
I heard something today that made my hair stand on end. I hope you will deal with it in your column because it is a symptom of a problem that warrants deep concern. Last October, the teacher of a fourth grade class asked her students to write a short essay on what they would like to do most to celebrate Halloween. Eighty percent of her 9 year-olds expressed the wish to “kill somebody”. Where do children get such ideas? I believe it is fair to say that they get them from movies on TV. What are we going to do about this love of violence among the young? Frankly, it scares me to death. I am – Concerned in California.

Now, I can almost hear some of my readers protesting, the kids were just kidding. You don’t actually believe that anyone would follow through on things like that do you? In fact there are some who do! Evangelist Dave Benoit tells of a mother finding a strange diary, called “The Book Of Shadows” in her son’s room. She, with fear and trembling, leafed through pages filled with satanic drawings. Then her eyes fell on these horrifying words, “Last year I stole a car at Halloween and ran over a kid and killed him. This year, at Halloween, I plan to do the same thing!” The words in his satanic diary proved to be true. He murdered a person the previous Halloween as a sacrifice to Satan.

All parents ought to be concerned. Halloween does desensitize our children by exposing them to violence, death, mutilation and gore. Not only do they expose them to it, they glorify it! I well remember the only haunted house that I have ever been in. I took a camera with me loaded with high speed film. I was shocked by what I saw. In one of the first rooms, there was a partially dismembered woman on an operating table. As I made my way along the darkened hallway a frightening mutilated man jumped out racing a electric saw and threatening to dismember me. And then, perhaps the most gruesome of all was a large lighted butcher’s meat case loaded with very real looking bloody body parts. Listen readers, I do not think that is funny at all. I spent several years on a fire department rescue squad and dismembered and mutilated people have never amused me. And why should it be acceptable at Halloween? Did you laugh and joke on July 22, 1991 when you heard the news t! hat police discovered 17 mutilated and dismembered bodies in apartment #213 which was occupied by Jeffery Dahmer? What are we telling our children if we accept that kind of scene on Halloween and yet gasp with true horror when murder-mutilations come to light on the news?

Halloween is desensitizing our children by its glorification of violence, death, mutilation and gore. Standard television and video viewing fare this Halloween will be slasher/horror movies like Dracula, Scream, “Nightmare on Elm Street”, “Halloween”, and “Friday the 13th” film series and others. Jeffery Dahmer’s favorite was the Exorsist II.

He “watched this movie on almost a weekly basis, for approximately six months, and sometimes 2 and 3 times a week. He identified with the main character in the movie because he appeared to be driven by evil. Tracy Edwards (one who escaped from Dahmer) testified that Dahmer forced him to watch this video. He said that Dahmer identified with the possessed former preacher and he wanted to be demonized. Edwards went on to say that Dahmer began to chant, rocking back and forth. While he did this, it seemed like he was not even there.”

Are you wondering why I am bringing Dahmer into this picture? I’ll tell you why. Many of the horror/slasher pictures are inspired by incidents like the Dahmer case and Dahmer was inspired by a demonic horror picture. I should say, that this is not just my “wild speculation.” Consider actor (and I use the term loosely) Robert Englund. He portrayed razor fingered, mass murderer Freddy Krueger in the “Nightmare on Elm Street” series. Where do you suppose he got his inspiration to play his part? He drew his inspiration from the late Ted Bundy, who raped, brutalized, mutilated and murdered more than 28 women. Englund told Slaughterhouse magazine, “I just read an article on Ted Bundy, so a lot of my imagery is based on him.”

I have had parents and media people tell me that TV does not have any influence on people. Do you believe that? In fact that’s bunk! Companies do not pay millions of dollars to air their commercials during Super Bowl Sunday or the Olympics because they do not influence anyone!

Syndicated columnist George Will does not believe that! He says that studies prove that “a 14-month-old infant can adopt behavior it has seen on television.” He goes on to say that young children are unable to distinguish fact from fantasy, and that they regard television as information about how the world works.

Harriet Kozkoff does not believe that either. This public TV producer told the press:
Entertainment is a powerful socializing agent in contemporary society. Slasher and horror movies…use violence and sexual arousal to maximize profits and are an inevitable prescription for conditioning sexual sadism into our pre-teen, teenage and young adult film fans.

Psychiatrist Dr. Thomas Radecki does not believe that television is neutral either. He said, “Every year film violence and real-life violence continues to get worse. We must protest and stop this growing sadism in our homes, schools, and on our streets.”

Obviously, the problem is wider than just on Halloween. But television programming and video rentals that feature gory, sadistic, demonic, bloody, violent themes are at their peak at Halloween.
Halloween conditions children and even adults to be receptive to occult doctrines and practices and desensitizes them by the display of violence and death.

• Fear can have detrimental affects on people –Fear hath torment 1John 4:18

Fear can have adverse affects. Sometimes the affects can be momentary and at other times they can be long lasting. Here are some examples.

A Christian organization, which works with young people, planned a haunted evening for teens. More than 550 attended. One woman sponsor became so frightened that she wet her pants. What was just as disgusting was that the organization’s newsletter even reported the embarrassing incident to all of its constituents. Let me quote directly:
Over 550 attended the event and there were over 45 salvation decisions. It has been reported to me by very reputable sources that one leader, who will remain nameless, was so scared by a certain individual with a chain saw that she had to endure wet pants the rest of the evening.

What’s going on? Wouldn’t you be frightened if, unexpectedly, a man came at you with a chain saw buzzing! I would. And if I wet my pants from the fright, I certainly would not want someone to publish it for all to read. My point is simply this, when it comes to Halloween, many Christians have set aside their discernment.

It gets worse. An article in the Milwaukee Journal, entitled “Haunted House Fun: It could become a nightmare for kids” stated, “It’s just for fun, you know that. But to a young child, a trip through a “haunted house” created for Halloween could be a nightmare.” Psychologist Marvin Berkowitz of Marquette University said, “Some haunted houses can frighten an adult.” He warned that a child must “go in with the right mental set.” He said, “Make sure they know it’s going to be a fun scare, not a real scare.” The article went on to say that even though you do your best to let the child know this, he still may be traumatized by such an experience.

I don’t believe children should be exposed to such manufactured traumas. Why? Because exposing a vulnerable child can have harmful consequences that run the spectrum from nightmares to emotional damage. In fact, Dr. Grace Ketterman, M.D. says in her book, You and Your Child’s Problems:

A tragic by-product of fear in the lives of children as early as preadolescence is the interest and involvement in supernatural occult phenomena.

I have been counseling in this area long enough to tell you that what Dr. Ketterman says is true! What kids need is not an exposure to horror and violence. What they need to experience is the love of Christ, the love of mom and dad. The apostle John wrote, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.” 1 John 4:18

The final reason that Halloween is harmful is because…
• It provides the opportunity to experiment with the occult to see if it works and an excuse to do evil
Many who are curious about the occult experiment with occult rituals and practices at Halloween. Some of those who were “just playing around” get hooked. Ouija boards, seances, casting spells and small animal sacrifices are among the most common avenues of experimentation.

Others cannot wait for Halloween. They believe it is the most powerful occult day of the year. Jack Roper, occult researcher with C.A.R.I.S. (Christian Apologetics: Research & Information Service) says “…the time of the year where you have the highest rate of satanic ritual crimes is Halloween.” He went on to say, “Around Halloween, one of the things you see is graveyard desecration.” Self-styled Satanists use human bones in their rituals. Graveyard vandalism is a common occurrence at Halloween.

A Milwaukee county parks and recreation employee contacted me several years back. He told me that he found the remains of small animals that had been sacrificed in area parks around Halloween. It was clear that these sacrifices were occult related because the remains were associated with either an altar inside a circle, triangle or pyramid structure.

Just last year a frightened woman called an associate of mine and asked us to come to her house. When we arrived she described an occult ritual that she and her daughter had seen from their upstairs window complete with hooded figures, fire, and an animal sacrifice. It took place in her neighbor’s yard.

While deer hunting in Marinette County, Wisconsin, I came across the remains of a bull that had been sacrificed within a stone circle. Most likely this was part of a Halloween ritual sacrifice performed by a satanic group.

I well remember the shock and trauma caused when a Christian care facility discovered that several of the residents had been ritually abused in occult rites two years in a row at Halloween. I counseled with one of those who had been sexually abused. How could such a hideous thing ever happen at a Christian facility you may ask? The occult group was able to infiltrate the organization when one or more of their members were hired as house parents. Through carefully planned deception, occult members slipped in and forced some residents to participate in their perverted Halloween demon worship rituals. Residents were threatened with horrible reprisals if they breathed a word of what happened to anyone. Thankfully, after a second year of Halloween ritual abuse someone talked. The Christian organization moved quickly and brought in the police. After a careful investigation only one was prosecuted, though several were fired. But there were no convictions. The occultists got off scot-free. Those that were abused were left to deal with their physical and mental scars.

In my efforts to expose the dangers of Halloween and the other occult holidays I have been asked to evaluate many ritual sites and evaluate photos to give my opinion as to whether they are occult related. I have envelopes full of pictures of animals that have been sacrificed, graves that have been desecrated, living persons whose bodies have been mutilated in occult rituals by tattooing, cutting, piercing, whipping and branding. And then there is the envelope marked pictures of human sacrifice. There is not the least little doubt in my mind that Halloween is the Devil’s celebration, packed with evil!

Let’s review. Halloween is harmful because…
1. Many kids are exposed to Witchcraft and occult practices at Halloween activities.
2. It provides “an acceptable” opportunity for witches and other occultists to promote pagan beliefs.
3. Children and even adults are conditioned to be receptive to occult doctrines and practices and are desensitized by the violence and death associated with it’s celebration.
4. Fear can have detrimental affects on people.
5. It provides the opportunity to experiment with the occult to see if it works and an excuse to do evil.

Ye that love the LORD, hate evil Psalms 97:10
Put Ephesians 5:11 into practice, “…have NO fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (expose) them.”

Published in: on September 18, 2010 at 10:39 am  Leave a Comment  

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