A Grimm Reminder
Every year around this time, Christians post numerous memes and rants against observing Halloween. I get somewhat tired of seeing those warnings. For me, it’s another day to share the gospel. Nevertheless, we should heed the Bible’s commandments in avoiding demonic influences. Ephesians 4:27 tells us not to give place to the devil. 1 Thessalonians 5:22 says, “Abstain from every form of evil.”
Among the characters associated with Halloween are witches. The world often tries to portray them in a positive light. A pastor’s wife I know once watched a school play by first graders called “Groovin’ with the Grimms.” It featured well-known fairy tale characters created by the Brothers Grimm. One of the songs performed was “Three Un-wicked Witches.” Here’s a portion of the lyrics:
We’re three un-wicked witches, what trying times we’ve had.
It really burns our britches when people say we’re “bad.”
We’re three un-wicked witches, we try hard to be good.
Of course, we have our glitches but we’re just misunderstood.
Many of us probably watched “The Wizard of Oz” when we were little. The movie not only had the infamous Wicked Witch of the West but a “good witch” named Glinda. My kindergarten teacher read books to us about “Dorrie the Little Witch.” I also remember watching cartoons of Wendy the Good Little Witch. There are even real life witches who practice “white magic” (which is supposedly the use of supernatural powers for selfless purposes). I dated one before committing my life to the Lord.
Witchcraft is now more commonplace than ever before. There are now more witches in America than Presbyterians. Recently, I came across the website of a “Christian witch.” That’s a contradiction in terms. Adding a Christian label to a sinful practice doesn’t sanctify it.
The Bible has many warnings against witchcraft:
“There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer” - Deuteronomy 18:10
“For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft....” - 1 Samuel 15:23
“And they caused their sons and daughters to pass through the fire, practiced witchcraft and soothsaying, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to anger.” - 2 Kings 17:17
“And I will cut off witchcrafts out of thine hand; and thou shalt have no more soothsayers” - Micah 5:12 (KJV)
“Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft,...they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” - Galatians 5:19-21 (KJV)
“But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” - Revelation 21:8 (NLT)
Depending on the translation, “sorcery” is sometimes used instead of witchcraft. The Hebrew word for sorcery and witchcraft is qesem, which also means divination. The New Oxford American Dictionary defines divination as “seeking knowledge of the future or the unknown by supernatural means.” One attempting to access divine guidance apart from the Holy Spirit opens doors to deception.
Christians can also practice witchcraft with prayers against God’s word and another person’s will. Years ago, I knew a woman who prayed for a particular man to become her husband. Eventually, I found out this man was already married. I believe those misguided prayers played a part in my friend being committed to the psychiatric ward and then dying at a young age.
Revelation 9:21 (NASB) says, “and they did not repent of their murders, nor of their witchcraft, nor of their sexual immorality, nor of their thefts.” The Greek word for witchcraft is pharmakeus, which means “the use or the administering of drugs.” That is where we get our English word “pharmacy.” Is it any wonder why there are so many messed up people today because of legalized drug usage?
Witchcraft is not something anyone (especially children) should play around with. Revelation 21:8 warns, “But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”
I’m not advocating we go on modern-day witch-hunts like what happened in New England and Europe during the 1600’s. Still, Christian parents need to take a stand against the hypocrisy practiced in our public schools. Most learning institutions won’t allow our children to pray, bring Bibles, and talk about Jesus. Yet they encourage reading books about fictional characters such as Harry Potter who practice witchcraft. I’m sure it’s frustrating for God-fearing parents who either cannot afford private schools or have the resources and freedom to homeschool their children.
Nevertheless, all of us can be part of the solution by voting in local elections and speaking out against ungodly legislation. We should also pray for revival to happen in our communities. School board members encountering God could change things faster than Christians simply holding up picket signs.
“And when they say to you, ‘Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,” should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living?’” - Isaiah 8:19