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HALLOWEEN! A WARNING TO PARENTS
republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
BY Johanna Michaelsen
“You kids want to know something?” I asked very softly.
“Yeah!” came a unanimous chorus.
“With the Lord Jesus, there is no trick. He loves every one of you very much.”
Several little faces beamed up at me through their ghoulish makeup. “That’s neat!” exclaimed one little girl. “Yeah!” chimed in a few others.
“This is Jesus’ night,” I said. Why I said that, I’m not really sure. I was poignantly aware of the fact that it is a night the devil has made a point of claiming for himself.
“No it’s not!” snarled a hidden voice. “It’s Jason’s night!” A boy who was taller than the rest stepped out from the shadows. He was wearing the white hockey mask of “Jason,” the demented, ghoulish killer in the movie Friday the 13th and was brandishing a very realistic-looking hatchet. I have to admit that the boy gave me a start, but I stood my ground and dropped a banana into his bag.
“No, ‘Jason,’ this is still Jesus’ night!” I repeated. And indeed it is, even though it is most assuredly the night set aside for the glorification and worship of idols, false gods, Satan, and death. “For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.”1
“Jason” evidently resented the competition, however, for he ripped our mailbox right out of the ground and left his banana squished on the stair.
Most of us in the United States have grown up
observing Halloween in one form or another. From the time we are in
preschool, we make drawings or cutouts of sinister black Witches—the
haggier the better. We make paintings of gruesome black cats with
gleaming, evil, orange eyes; we hang up smirking paper skeletons with
dancing limbs; we glue together ghost and bat mobiles; and we design
demoniacal faces for our pumpkins.
For several years, one thoughtful kindergarten teacher in Southern California even provided ghosts for her pupils to commune with at Halloween. I spoke with one of the mothers from that school who told me that her little boy was sent home with a note from the teacher informing the parents that their child would be bringing home a “special friend” the next day. The child was to nurture his “friend,” name it, feed it, and talk to it—all as a part of a special class project that was designed to “develop the child’s imagination.”
The next day, the little boy came home with a sealed envelope along with explicit instructions that his parents were not to touch it; only the child was allowed to open the envelope. Mom said, “You bet!” and promptly opened it up. Inside was six inches of thick orange wool string with a knot tied a quarter of the way up to make a loop resembling a head. The mimeographed “letter” that accompanied it read as follows:
Haunted HouseThe mother, a Christian, didn’t approve of the idea of her son taking in a pet ghost, however housebroken. She was also a little suspicious of her six-year-old being addressed as “Dear Customer.” So she confiscated the thing and put it in the garage on a shelf until she could decide what to do with it. The next day, her sister was in the garage on an errand, unaware of the matter of the “ghost in the string.” Suddenly she was frightened by the sense of a threatening presence around her. She heard the sounds of a cat hissing in the corner and something like a “chatty doll” mumbling incoherently at her. Later that night they threw the “ghost string” into the garbage pail, prayed to the Lord to remove the entity, and were never bothered by the “presence” again. This family had no trouble whatever believing that a spirit had indeed been sent home with their little boy and that it didn’t much like having been assigned to a Christian household.2
001 Cemetery Lane
Thank you for your order. Your ghost is exactly what you ordered. You will find that your ghost is attached to an orange string. Do not untie the special knot until you are ready to let your ghost go.
Your ghost will tell you when it is hungry and what it prefers to eat. It will sleep in the air beside you all day. It especially likes quiet places where there are cobwebs, creaky boards and corners.
If you follow the above directions, you will have a very happy ghost.
The Halloween ghosts were given out again the following year by the same teacher. The Christian mother managed to get hold of the envelope, orange ghost-carrier and all, and sent it to me. It is possible, of course, that the teacher meant nothing sinister by it. Perhaps to her it was just a cute exercise in imagination for her kindergartners. Nevertheless, in light of the stated intent of many Transpersonal (i.e., a branch of psychology that focuses on mysticism and the occult in the search for transcendence) educators to introduce children to spirit guides, I can’t help but be a little curious about any teacher who sends the children home with “imaginary friends.”
CHURCH-SPONSORED HORROREven in the church, Halloween is a time of spooky fun and games. Any number of evangelical churches, ever mindful of their youth programs and ministries, will sponsor haunted houses designed to scare the wits out of the kids. From 1970 to 2001 in Bakersfield, California, Youth for Christ’s Campus Life was a co-sponsor of “Scream in the Dark,” an event that was held every night for about a week before Halloween. At least 20,000 people “brave[d] the chilly corridors and dark passages” every year to face ghoulish figures, terrifying tunnels, and screams in the dark.3
While many churches have switched from Halloween activities to alternative events on Halloween such as Harvest parties, countless Christians still allow their children to celebrate Halloween with door-to-door trick or treating and dressing up in scary costumes. Christian actor Kirk Cameron (Left Behind films and Fireproof) has come out publicly defending Halloween. In an interview in a popular online Christian magazine, Cameron stated that Christians “should have the biggest Halloween party on your block.” Cameron said he had no problem with Christians dressing up in devil, ghost, and other traditional Halloween costumes because they could do it as a way to witness to unbelievers.4
But is this church-sponsored horror a good idea? There are a number of reasons it is not. For one thing, terror can kill. When my husband was a teenager, the family next door to him lost their toddler one Halloween when the little one opened the door to trick-or-treaters. Their hideous appearance and shrieks so traumatized the child that he literally dropped dead on the spot. That may be a rare example, but the fact remains that terrorizing children is dangerous.
Church-sponsored horror isn’t a new phenomenon. My husband’s Lutheran church in New York always sponsored a “Chamber of Horrors” when he was a boy, complete with fluorescent skeletons, scary pop-ups, peeled grapes to simulate dead eyeballs, and a bowl of cold spaghetti that was supposed to be . . . well, you know. Anyway, they made you stick your hand into it, and any number of kids spent the rest of the night throwing up.
Halloween has become a full-fledged national children’s play day, but for hundreds of thousands of people in the Western world (and their numbers are growing steadily) Halloween is a sacred time, the ancient pagan festival of fire and death.
FESTIVAL OF THE DEAD
The origins and traditions of Halloween can be
traced back thousands of years to the days of the ancient Celts and
their priests, the Druids. The eve of October 31 marked the transition
from summer into the darkness of winter. It marked the beginning of the
Celtic New Year. The Feast of Samhain was a fearsome night, a dreaded
night, a night in which great bonfires were lit, according to some pagan
traditions, to Samana the Lord of Death, the dark Aryan god who was
known as the Grim Reaper, the leader of the ancestral ghosts.5
On this night, the spirits of the dead rose up, shivering with the coming cold of winter and seeking the warmth and affection of the homes they once inhabited. And even colder, darker creatures filled the night: evil Witches flying through the night,6 hobgoblins, and evil pookas that appeared in the form of hideous black horses. Demons, fairies, and ghouls roamed about as the doors of the burial sidh-mounds opened wide,7 allowing them free access to the world of living men. These loathsome beings were usually not in a particularly good mood by the time they arrived, and it was feared that unless these spirits were appeased and soothed with offerings and gifts they would wreak mischief and vengeance by destroying crops, killing cattle, turning milk sour, and generally making life miserable.
So it was that families offered what was most precious to them: food—a “treat” which they fervently hoped would be sufficient to offset any “trick” which the ghostly blackmailers might otherwise be tempted to inflict.
The ancient Celtic villagers realized, however, that merely feeding the spirits might not be enough to speed them on their way. The ghoulies might decide it would be rude to eat and run, as it were, and might just be tempted to stick around.
That simply would not do. So arose the practice of dressing in masks and costumes: Chosen villagers disguised themselves as the fell creatures at large, mystically taking on their attributes and powers. The “mummers,” as they were called, cavorted from house to house collecting the ancient Celtic equivalent of protection money, and then romped the ghosts right out of town when they were through.
They carried jack-o’-lanterns to light their way—turnips or potatoes with fearful, demonic faces carved into them which they hoped would duly impress, if not intimidate, the demons around them.8
SACRIFICE AND FIRE
As a part of their ancient New Year’s ritual,
massive sacred bonfires were lit throughout the countryside of Wales,
Ireland, and France—fires from which every house in the village would
rekindle their hearth fires (which had been ritually extinguished, as
they were at the end of every year). The villagers would gather and
dance round and round the bonfire, whose light and heat they believed
would help the sun make it through the cold, dark winter.9
But the great fires served another purpose as well: On this night, unspeakable sacrifices were offered by the Druid priests to the Lord of Death. Lewis Spence in his book The History and Origins of Druidism says:
Certain writers on Celtic history have indignantly denied that the Druidic caste ever practiced the horrible rite of human sacrifice. There is no question, however, that practice it they did. Tacitus alludes to the fact that the Druids of Anglesea “covered their altars with the blood of captives.” If the words of Caesar are to be credited, human sacrifice was a frequent and common element in their religious procedure. He tells us that no sacrifice might be carried out except in the presence of a Druid.10It is in his Commentaries that Caesar speaks of the great wicker images “in which the Druids were said to burn scores of people alive.”11
Some modem Witches may still deny that the Druidic religion, on which many of their beliefs and practices are based, ever practiced human and animal sacrifice as a part of their “peaceable nature religion.” But some noted Witches have indeed acknowledged the murderous bent of the ancient religion:
Propitiation, in the old days when survival was felt to depend on it, was a grim and serious affair. There can be little doubt that at one time it involved human sacrifice—of criminals saved up for the purpose or, at the other end of the scale, of an aging king; little doubt, either, that these ritual deaths were by fire.12The Druids (from the Gaelic word druidh, meaning “a wise man” or “magician”13) would carefully watch the writhing of the victims in the fire (whether people or animals) and from their death agonies would foretell the future of the village. The Feast of Samhain was by no means the only celebration at which the Druids practiced human sacrifice. Sacrificial victims were also burned in their sacred fires during the spring festival of Beltane held on the eve of the first of May as part of their fertility rites.14 So it would seem, according to ancient historians, that human and animal sacrifice was a particularly noxious and pervasive habit among the Druids.
The Farrars, well-known authors and practicing Witches in Ireland, tell us that “Later, of course, the propitiatory sacrifice became symbolic . . .” but then mention that the royal sacrifice at Samhain may have lingered in the form of animal substitutes. The Farrars tell us of at least one animal sacrifice they knew of that took place in their village “within living memory.”15 We can only hope that “the old days when survival was felt to depend on human sacrifice” will never return.
THE SPIRIT OF HALLOWEEN
One Halloween several years ago, I watched a rerun of Garfield’s Halloween Adventure.
Garfield was thrilled at the realization that Halloween was a night
where he got to rake in free candy. “This is the night I was created
for,” he exclaimed with as much enthusiasm as Garfield ever seems to
He decides to sucker poor unsuspecting Otie, an exceedingly dumb (though endearing) doggie, into going with him so that Garfield could double his personal candy haul. Well . . . maybe he’ll give Otie one piece of candy for his troubles.
Then suddenly Garfield pauses in his Machiavellian musings and wonders, “Am I being too greedy? Should I share my candy with those less fortunate than I? Am I missing the spirit of Halloween?” Wouldn’t it be nice if that were in fact the spirit of Halloween! But nothing could be further from the truth.
The “spirit of Halloween” is more accurately discerned in the horror movies and DVDs traditionally released in honor of the season.16 Popular cinematic “treasures” like Halloween (and its three sequels), Friday the 13th (three of those), Halloweennight, Tale of Halloween, and any number of slasher, blood-and-gore, murder- and-terror flicks are truer to the original “spirit of Halloween”—the spirit of sudden death and murder—than is the sight of little Linus sitting all night in his “sincere” pumpkin patch waiting for the Great Pumpkin, or of Garfield in his relentless quest for candy.
Modern Witches would vehemently deny that their
celebration has anything to do with the demonic horrors depicted in
such films as Friday the 13th. To them, Halloween is one of the
four greater Sabbats held during the year. It is the time of Harvest
Celebration—that season in which the Great Goddess goes to sleep for the
long winter months, giving way to the Horned God of Hunting and Death,
who will rule until her return on the first of May. It is a time of
ritual and for ridding oneself of personal weaknesses,17 a time for
feasting and joyful celebration. It is also a time for communing with
the spirits of the dead.
Witches Arnold and Patricia Crowther say that—
Halloween has always been the Festival of the Dead and was believed to be the best time to contact those who had passed over. Today, spiritualists try to contact the departed by means of “spirit guides”—American Indians, Chinese men, nuns, priests and even little girls. Witches tried to make contact through the god of Death himself. So when the bonfire had burned down, the priestess, in her new role as the god, held a skull between her hands, using it as a crystal-gazing ball. This was the kind of necromancy practiced centuries before the Fox Sisters, with their poltergeist tappings, started the modern craze for spiritualism.18The Celts, say the Crowthers, would sometimes lie on graves during Halloween, hoping to hear some word of wisdom from the spirits of the corpses beneath them. And the Crowthers boast that “the high priestesses were just as successful in contacting the dead as are our own mediums.”19 According to a longtime Witch with whom I once spoke, they still are. Communing with the spirits of the dead is a regular feature of their covens’ Halloween rituals.
Several years ago, an article in the Los Angeles Times featured a story on a certain coven’s celebration rituals during Halloween. The story described the ritual and then told that it “will be repeated throughout the Southland today as Witches celebrate their most important holiday, Samhain, or Halloween, when they believe the veil between the worlds becomes thin, making visits with spirits possible.” Some Witches will use the Ouija board to contact the dead. Others will use a darkened scrying-mirror into which they stare until the faces of their beloved departed supposedly appear. Others may use a crystal ball or “sit quietly round the cauldron, gazing into the incense smoke, talking of what they see and feel.”20
While the Witches are spending the Halloween
season tucking in their Goddess for her long winter sleep and frolicking
in joyful communion with the spirits of the dead, there is another
religious group that is equally serious about its Halloween
celebrations: the Satanists. Halloween to them is a more sinister and
direct celebration of death and Satan. Unlike the Witches, of whom most
do not even acknowledge the existence of Satan, the Satanists are quite
candid about exactly who the dread “lord of death” happens to be, and
they celebrate Halloween as one of his two highest unholy days.
As is the case among the Witches, different “denominations” of Satanists have their own peculiar traditions, beliefs, and practices on this night. For some of them Satan is not a real, specific entity but rather the personification of evil resident within all men, a “dark hidden force in nature responsible for the workings of earthly affairs.”21
Other Satanists however—cult Satanists—understand that Satan is very real indeed. To them, the sacrifices he demands are not symbolic at all.22 They believe that the blood sacrifice of innocence which Satan demands as the ultimate blasphemy and sign of devotion to himself must be very literal indeed. At various times during the year, but especially during the month of October, police across the country report finding the remains of animals—some with the blood drained, others with various organs missing, some carefully skinned while keeping the tortured creature alive. They are frequently found at sites which indicate that some form of ritual took place. When no altar or pentagram or other symbolism is in evidence, it is entirely likely that some neophyte or self-styled Satanist is simply practicing to make sure the “sacrifice” is letter-perfect for the ceremony.
Because of its innocence and frailty, a tiny child is viewed by these Satanists as the perfect sacrifice to their Master. The infant is seen as a representation of the Christ Child, and it is He whom they are blaspheming and symbolically destroying in the prolonged and brutal torture and slaying of the child. After the death of the baby, the members will all eat a portion of the little one’s heart and will drink its blood.
RECRUITERS FOR SATANHalloween is also a prime recruiting season for the Satanists. Much as the government will plant undercover narcotic agents in various high schools to find out who is pushing or using drugs on campus, so some Satanists may plant kids at the schools who are there solely for the purpose of discerning potential members or victims among the students. The Dungeons and Dragons clubs are key hunting grounds for them, as are other groups and clubs based on medieval themes.
Church-sponsored “haunted houses” are also fertile recruiting centers. The Satanists watch for those kids who show a marked bent for the macabre and the sinister, and they invite them to a “real good” party being held elsewhere, which proves to be a lower-level ritual held for the purpose of initiating these kids into Satanism.
IMITATORS OF GOD
So . . . should your family participate in the
traditional Halloween celebrations? Absolutely . . . if you and/or your
children are Witches, Satanists, humanists, atheists, pagans, or
anything other than born-again Christians (or Orthodox Jews). For a true
Christian to participate in the ancient trappings of Halloween is as
incongruous as for a committed cult Satanist coming from a blood
sacrifice on Christmas Eve to set up a crèche in his living room and
sing “Silent Night, Holy Night” with heartfelt, sincere devotion to baby
Ephesians 5:1 admonishes us to be imitators of God. Can you picture the Lord Jesus dressing up as Satan, or as one of the demons He cast out that week, or perhaps as a Druid priest, just because it was the Feast of Samhain and His disciples were giving a nifty party that night in honor of the tradition? Or can you see the apostles disguising themselves as temple prostitutes or as worshipers of the god Moloch, to whom the Canaanites (and even the Israelites in their darker days) sacrificed their children?23
Halloween is a day in which virtually every occult practice that God has called “abomination” is glorified.
When you come into the land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominations of those nations. 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, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord, and because of these abominations the Lord your God drives them out from before you. You shall be blameless before the Lord your God. For these nations which you will dispossess listened to soothsayers and diviners; but as for you, the Lord your God has not appointed such for you. (Deuteronomy 18:9-14, NASB*)“But it’s only for one night!” some cry. “It’s only in fun for the children!” If this is how you feel, then you need to understand what the Word of God says to you:
Learn not the way of the heathen! (Jeremiah 10:2)
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? and what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? and what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. (2 Corinthians 6:14-17)
But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils. (1 Corinthians 10:20-21)
There are any number of creative alternatives
that can be provided for children on Halloween without participating in
the ancient religious traditions of the Witches and Satanists.
Some families view the occasion as a witnessing opportunity and handout Gospel tracts along with the treats. Some churches are now sponsoring “Bible Houses,” in which the kids go through and hear different Bible stories read or acted out—a godly alternative to the haunted-house routine!
Other Christian families choose to spend the night remembering the saints who have gone to be with the Lord during the year. Saints aren’t just those who have been canonized as such by some church. A saint, according to the Bible, is anyone who has believed in the Lord Jesus Christ as his personal Messiah. Perhaps you could spend this night talking about the martyrs who were willing to die rather than compromise their belief in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Christian parents can also make a difference in the way the schools their children attend celebrate Halloween. In Colorado, parents protested the traditional celebration of Halloween in several public schools, including at least one elementary school on the grounds that it is a “high holy day in the satanic religion, and as such is an inappropriate holiday for schoolchildren.”24 One mother said that she “would like to see the same measures applied to the Halloween parties as have been taken with the Christmas parties.”25 In light of the present distress, I fully agree. Since God and Jesus have been banned from Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving celebrations in most of our schools, why should the government-recognized religions of Witchcraft and Satanism get free promotion on Halloween from these same institutions?
One thing Halloween should not be for the Christian is a time of fear. It should be a time to rejoice in the fact that “For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8)! Spend at least part of this night worshiping God by singing hymns. Above all, spend time in prayer and intercession for the children.
It is tragic that many people in the church have forgotten that “God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7), and that includes on Halloween! Too many of our children have been made vulnerable to a spirit of fear and to the occult where we allow faith in God to be extinguished by participating in the darkness of this world.
After the repeal of the Witchcraft Act in England in 1951, the Witches and Satanists experienced a revival which is currently in full swing. You might not know too much about Witches or Satanists, but I guarantee you that most kids do in today’s computerized, Internet, social-media world.
For ye were sometimes [formerly] darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light . . . And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [expose] them. (Ephesians 5:8,11)To order copies of HALLOWEEN! A Warning to Christian Parents, click here.
1. 1 John 3:8.
2. Back in 1985, there was an outfit that called itself “Adopt-a-Ghost” based in Hollywood, California. For a paltry $10.00 to cover adoption papers and conjuring fees, you could adopt a ghost for your house, condo, apartment, or office . . . like a Cabbage Patch Kid, only cheaper and considerably livelier. Hauntings were guaranteed, and the ghost even came with written tips on ghost-raising to make sure it would stick around.
3. Connie Swart, “Event Still a Scream,” the Bakersfield Californian, October 16,1982, p. 13.
4. Emma Koonse, “Kirk Cameron on Halloween: ‘Christians Should Have the Biggest Party on the Block’” (Christian Post, October 20, 2014, http://www.christianpost.com/news/kirk-cameron-on-halloween-christians-should-have-the-biggest-party-on-the-block-128345/#Jx3ZzPQLf0A8bigp.99).
5. Barbara G. Walker, The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets (San Francisco, CA: Harper and Row Publishers, 1983), p. 372.
6. Encyclopedia of Witchcraft and Demonology (London: Octopus Books Ltd., 1974), p. 166. Introduction by Hans Holzer.
7. Janet and Stewart Farrar, A Witches Bible, vol.1, The Sabbats (New York, NY: Magickal Childe Publishing, Inc., 1981, 1984), p. 122.
8. The lantern was also called a “corpse lantern” or”fairie fire,” or a will-o’-the-wisp, and numerous fascinating legends about its origins have risen up around it. Some thought it was the spirit of a child which had been buried in the swamp. Others thought it represented the lights fairies used to beckon fools to watery death in the swamps. Another legend tells of a clever fellow named Jack who got himself barred from hell as well as heaven for being something of a Faustian smart aleck and was doomed to run about earth for all eternity with the burning coal he snatched from hell itself with the turnip he was eating just before the gates slammed shut. This story makes little sense to me at all. I mean, would you be eating a turnip while standing at the gates of hell politely requesting admittance? Doubtful. One version of this tale found in an elementary school teacher’s “Halloween Fun” manual observes that the devil threw the burning coal at Jack to drive him away and that Jack caught the thing in his turnip. This makes more sense. Anyway, the Celts carved jack’o’lanterns out of turnips, nonetheless. They probably used turnips because they didn’t have pumpkins. They had to come to America to discover them, which they did during the mass immigration to America during the great potato famine of 1886. They soon realized that pumpkins are a whole lot easier to carve than turnips. They also make nicer pies.
St. James Church in the Los Angeles area held a “Pumpkin Mass” in 1987 in which the priest blessed the parishioners’ Halloween costumes (to be brought in boxes or sacks) and the pumpkins which were to be carved and placed in the sanctuary. The verse quoted for the occasion: “Ye are the light of the world. . . . Let your light so shine before men” (Matthew 5:14, 16).
9. Encyclopedia of Witchcraft, p.166.
10. Lewis Spence, The History of Origins of Druidism (Great Britain: EP Publishing Ltd., 1976), p. 104.
12. Farrar and Farrar, A Witches Bible, vol. 1 The Sabbats, op. cit., p. 122.
13. Raymond Buckland, Witchcraft from the Inside (St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn Publications, 1975), p. 16.
14. Lewis Spence, The History of Origins, op. cit., p. 105.
15. Farrar and Farrar, A Witches Bible, vol. 1, The Sabbats, op. cit., p. 122.
16. James Frazer records in The Golden Bough (New York, NY: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1922) that in some areas “people who assisted at the bonfires would wait till the last spark was out and then would suddenly take to their heels, shouting at the top of their voices, “The cropped black sow seize the hindmost!” The saying implies that originally one of the company became a victim in dead earnest” (The Golden Bough, p. 736). The “cropped black sow” was a representation of the Goddess Cerridwen in her dark aspect as the Crone, according to Welsh mythology (A Witches Bible, vol.1, The Sabbats, p. 125). She is still worshiped in that aspect by Wiccans today, as well as in her more appealing forms of Maiden and Mother.
As the Farrars point out in A Witches Bible, vol. 1, The Sabbats, p. 725), “All these victim-choosing rituals long ago mellowed into a mere romp, but Frazer had no doubt of their original grim purpose. What was once a deadly serious ritual at the great tribal fire had become a party game at the family ones.” They may have “mellowed in time,” in most places, but nevertheless, it was the terror of the original sacrifices and demons that most accurately represents the “true spirit” of Halloween. The true “spirit of Halloween” is that of sudden death and murder.
17. Raymond Buckland, Buckland’s Complete Book of Witchcraft (St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn Publications, 1986), p. 68.
18. Arnold and Patricia Crowther, The Secrets of Ancient Witchcraft with the Witches Tarot (West Caldwell, NJ: University Books, Inc., 1974), pp. 67-68.
19. Ibid., p. 68.
20. Farrar and Farrar, A Witches Bible, vol 1, The Sabbats, op. cit., p. 135.
21. Anton Szandor LaVey, The Satanic Bible (New York, NY: Avon Books, 1969), p. v of introduction.
22. Anton LaVey clarifies his position on human sacrifice on page 88 of his Satanic Bible, in which he says: “Symbolically, the victim is destroyed through the working of a hex or curse, which in turn leads to the physical, mental or emotional destruction of the ‘sacrifice’ in ways and means not attributable to the magician. The only time a Satanist would perform a human sacrifice would be if it were to serve a two-fold purpose; that being to release the magician’s wrath in the throwing of a curse, and more important, to dispose of a totally obnoxious and deserving individual.”
23. Ezekiel 16:20,21; Jeremiah 32:35; 2 Kings 17:17; Isaiah 57:5.
24 Rebecca Jones, “Halloween Parade Off” (The Eagle Forum, vol.8, no.4, Fall 1982), p. 17.
*Scripture verses in this booklet are taken from the King James Bible, except on page 14 where one verse is taken from the NASB. Scripture taken from the New American Standard Bible(R), Copyright (C) 1960, 1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975, 1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
To order copies of HALLOWEEN! A Warning to Christian Parents, click here.
About the AuthorJohanna Michaelsen is a noted author, lecturer, and authority on the occult. Her internationally best-selling autobiography, The Beautiful Side of Evil, tells the story of her involvement with the occult, Yoga, Silva Mind Control, a well-known psychic surgeon in Mexico City, and her eventual rejections of all such practices. Published by Harvest House in 1982, it has been translated into German, Dutch, French, Indonesian, Bulgarian, Polish, Chinese, Portuguese, Korean, and Spanish.
Her second book Like Lambs to the Slaughter: Your Child and the Occult (available through Amazon), also a best seller, clearly and extensively documents the invasion of occultism and dangerous religious practices into America’s public education system, movies, television, books, games, holidays, and more.
Since Johanna Michaelsen’s exit from the occult in November of 1972, she has devoted her time to studying current trends and occult practices for the purpose of warning and equipping the church in these last days. Her books, tapes, audio-book, seminars, and lectures have helped thousands find freedom and peace in Jesus Christ.
Johanna is available for interviews and seminars and can be reached at Johanna@michaelsenministries.org. You may visit her on the web at: http://michaelsenministries.com.
WHAT THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH TEACHES ABOUT SALVATION
BY DAVID CLOUD
republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
Because of the ecumenical movement, a growing number of Roman Catholics are familiar with biblical terminology about salvation, such as born again, and some have been trained to reply affirmatively to the questions, "Are you saved?" or, "Have you been born again?"
The problem is that they do not mean by this what the Bible means. Rome's doctrine of salvation is not the the true gospel of complete and sure salvation through personal faith in Christ. It is a gospel of works that is sometimes presented under the guise of grace.
THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH'S DOCTRINE OF SALVATION CAN BE SUMMARIZED AS FOLLOWS:
1. Rome teaches that Christ, having purchased redemption by His blood and death, delivered it to the Catholic Church to be distributed to men through her sacraments.
Rome's gospel centers in the Catholic Church, the pope, the priesthood, and the sacraments. While Catholicism teaches that Christ died on the cross to purchase man's salvation, it is not satisfied simply to invite men to receive this salvation by faith directly from the resurrected Christ.
Consider the following quotes from the Vatican II Council:
"For 'God's only-begotten Son ... has won a treasure for the militant Church ... he has entrusted it to blessed Peter, the key-bearer of heaven, and to his successors who are Christ's vicars on earth, SO THAT THEY MAY DISTRIBUTE IT TO THE FAITHFUL FOR THEIR SALVATION. They may apply it with mercy for reasonable causes to all who have repented for and have confessed their sins. At times they may remit completely, and at other times only partially, the temporal punishment due to sin in a general as well as in special ways (insofar as they judge it to be fitting in the sight of the Lord). The merits of the Blessed Mother of God and of all the elect ... are known to add further to this treasury'" (ellipsis are in the original) (Vatican II Council, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Apostolic Constitution on the Revision of Indulgences, Chap. 4, 7, p. 80).
"For it is through Christ's Catholic Church alone, which is the universal help towards salvation, that the fulness of the means of salvation can be obtained. It was to the apostolic college alone of which Peter is the head, that we believe that our Lord entrusted all the blessings of the New Covenant, in order to establish on earth the one Body of Christ into which all those should be fully incorporated who belong in any way to the people of God" (Vatican II Council, Decree on Ecumenism, chap. 1, 3, p. 415).
2. Rome's plan of salvation has several steps
The First Step is Baptism. According to Rome, salvation begins with baptism. It can be infant baptism for those born into Catholic homes or adult baptism for those who approach the Roman Church later in life. Either way, the Catholic Church teaches that through baptism a person receives spiritual life.
"By the sacrament of Baptism, whenever it is properly conferred in the way the Lord determined and received with the proper dispositions of soul, man becomes truly incorporated into the crucified and glorified Christ and is reborn to a sharing of the divine life" (Vatican II, Decree on Ecumenism, chap. 3, II, 22, p. 427).
The next steps are the other church sacraments.
After baptism a person is considered to be born again and part of the Church. This new life is said to be nurtured and kept alive through Confirmation, Mass, Penance and the other Catholic sacraments.
"Just as Christ was sent by the Father so also he sent the apostles ... that they might preach the Gospel to every creature and proclaim that the Son of God by his death and resurrection had freed us from the power of Satan and from death, and brought us into the Kingdom of his Father. But he also willed that the work of salvation which they preached SHOULD BE SET IN TRAIN THROUGH THE SACRIFICE AND SACRAMENTS, around which the entire liturgical [ritualistic] life revolves" (Vatican II, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Chap. 1, I, 5,6, pp. 23-24).
"THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS ARE THE NECESSARY MEANS ESTABLISHED BY CHRIST THROUGH WHICH HIS REDEEMING, LIFE-GIVING, SANCTIFYING GRACE IS IMPARTED TO INDIVIDUALS' SOULS. You must centre your life upon the sacraments established by Christ if you want to save your soul. means of salvation. ... The sacraments are the source of your real life, the divine life that will unite you with God in this world and in eternity. Let nothing make you think that you can get along without the sacraments. Without them your soul must die. ... IF YOU DON'T RECEIVE THE SACRAMENTS AT ALL, YOU DON'T RECEIVE GRACE. If you don't receive them properly, that is, if you receive them seldom and with little devotion, you receive less grace" (L.G. Lovasik, The Eucharist in Catholic Life, pp. 14,15).
Thus we see that the Roman Catholic plan of salvation is faith in Christ PLUS baptism PLUS continuing in the sacraments.
3. Rome teaches that salvation is by the grace of God through Christ and is received by faith, but it denies that salvation is by grace ALONE and faith ALONE.
The following statement is made by a modern Roman priest well known for his emphasis upon the necessity for personal faith in the exercise of the sacraments, yet he is careful to say that the sacraments are as necessary as faith.
"In recent years the church has reiterated again and again that we are saved by faith AND the sacraments of faith. BOTH ARE NECESSARY" (J.D. Crichton, Christian Celebration: The Sacraments, p. 65).
The Catholic Church redefines grace.
When a Roman Catholic priest speaks of salvation through the grace of Jesus Christ, he does not mean the unmerited, free grace of Christ whereby a believing sinner is eternally and completely and once-for-all saved from sin. By "grace," the Roman Catholic Church means God's help to live a righteous life.
Consider the following quote from Vatican II:
"All children of the Church should nevertheless remember that their exalted condition results, not from their own merits, but from the grace of Christ. If they fail to respond in thought, word and deed to that grace, not only shall they not be saved, but they shall be the more severely judged" (Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 2, 14, p. 337).
This is a strange kind of grace. It is a grace that does not result in eternal certainty, but only the POSSIBILITY of living up to God's requirements. It is a subtle and unscriptural MIXTURE OF GRACE PLUS WORKS that is condemned in Galatians 1:6-8.
THE BIBLE'S ANSWER TO ROME'S DOCTRINE OF SALVATION
1. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the examples of salvation in the book of Acts (Acts 10:43: 11:16-18; 14:27; 15:9-11; 16:30-31). The souls that were saved in the early churches were saved once and for all by putting their faith in Jesus Christ. Their salvation was not a process of sacramentalism.
2. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the teaching of the book of Romans. This book is written expressly to reveal the way of salvation (Romans 1:15-17).
Consider Romans 3:21-24; 4:4-6; 11:6. Notice in the last reference that God says it is impossible to mix grace and works for salvation. We are saved by grace or we are saved by works; it cannot be a mixture of the two as the Catholic Church teaches!
3. Sacramental salvation is also contrary to the Gospel of John, which was written expressly to lead men to eternal life in Christ (John 20:31).
The first twelve chapters of John describe Jesus' ministry to the world of lost men. In these chapters, we are shown by unmistakable emphasis that eternal life and salvation are received by faith in Jesus Christ and faith in Christ alone. "Believe" is the key word in these chapters. See John 1:12; 3:16-18, 36; 5:24; 6:28-29; 7:38-39; 8:24; 9:35-38; 11:25-26; 12:36-37. Notice that in all of these verses we are told that salvation is obtained through faith in Christ and there is no hint of sacramentalism.
4. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the summary of the gospel in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4. Here Paul summarizes the gospel that he preached, and it is faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Period. There is no sacramentalism whatsoever. No priests; no church; no works; no sacraments.
5. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the summary of the gospel in Ephesians 2:8-10. This passage teaches that salvation is a free gift of God's grace and that works follow as the evidence. This puts everything into proper order and perspective. It is God's will that men live holy lives, but holy living is the product of salvation and not the way of salvation.
6. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the summary of the gospel in Titus 3:4-8. This passage also teaches that salvation is a free gift of God's grace and that works follow as the evidence and product.
This is true Bible salvation. Eternal life, forgiveness of sin, righteousness, and the Holy Spirit are received when an individual acknowledges his sinfulness, repents of his sin and trusts Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. It is only after this that a person can do any work to please God. Works and ceremonies, such as baptism and the Lord's Supper, in themselves have nothing to do with forgiveness of sin, eternal life, the new birth, or becoming a child of God. Rather, obedience to God follows salvation as naturally as living follows ones natural birth. First we must receive new life through personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Then, having life, the regenerated believer serves his Master.
QUESTIONS TO ASK A PERSON WHO CLAIMS TO BE A SAVED ROMAN CATHOLIC
By Alex O. Dunlap
Occasionally, some well-meaning Christian thinks he knows a "saved Roman Catholic." We invite such a person to introduce us to his friend so that we may, in his presence, ask the Roman Catholic these questions. His answers will easily determine that he is not saved in the true, biblical sense. The new "accommodation" approach of the Roman Church in these ecumenical days of apostasy is to use the same expressions as Fundamental Christians. Christian love is not shown by permitting these people to believe they are saved, when they are not. Christian love is shown by making the true Gospel plain and clear so that the "religious but lost" person will realize his unsaved condition and his need of a Saviour. He must receive the true Christ of the Bible, not a counterfeit, as in the Roman, Greek and many other churches. The Apostle Paul said that he was free from the blood of all men because he did not withhold from them all truth. May the same be true of every genuine witness for Jesus Christ! Here are the questions:
1. When were you converted?
2. How were you converted?
3. To what, or to whom, were you converted?
4. What do you believe now that you did not believe before your conversion?
5. What does it mean to be saved?
6. On what scriptural promises do you base your salvation?
7. What does it mean to be born again?
8. Are you sure today that if you die tomorrow, or at any time in the future, you will be in heaven immediately after death?
9. What do you believe about Purgatory?
10. What do you believe about the Mass?
11. Do you still participate in the Mass?
12. Do you believe that any sinner can be saved who dies without trusting in Jesus Christ alone for the salvation of his soul and forgiveness of his sins?
13. Do you believe that Mary and Roman Catholic saints can answer your prayers or help you get to heaven?
14. How do you believe that the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ is applied to your soul?
15. Have you told your priest you have been saved?
16. Do you believe you will still go to heaven if you leave the Roman Catholic Church, receive believer's baptism and join a fundamentalist Bible believing, non-Catholic church?
17. When and where do you plan to do this?
As questions such as these are discussed in detail, it will become evident that the person is trusting in his works, merits, baptism, confirmation, sacraments, or something BESIDES OR PLUS, Jesus Christ, and not in Christ and Christ ALONE. He can then be shown the difference between his unbiblical form of salvation and the saving faith of the Bible.
THE UNHOLY "HOLY GHOST FIRE" OF TODD WHITE & THE "NAR"
BY TONY BAUGH
republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
The Bible is clear that in the last days, just before Jesus returns, there will be false prophets, deceiving through false signs and lying wonders. There is no greater present-day evidence of this than the NAR (New Apostolic Reformation). The Ground Zero of the NAR is Bethel Church in Redding, California, with whom Todd White is strongly affiliated. White speaks at their conferences and is very tight with Bethel Church's commander-in-chief and senior pastor, Bill Johnson, whose "School of Supernatural Ministry" offers courses on doing precisely what Todd White does, as well as "teach" people to be ordained as "Prophets" and "Apostles" (if you are willing to pay their hefty tuition). Upon completion of the courses, Bill Johnson himself "Knights" graduates.
Bethel (and the NAR at large) inducts youth through the emotionalism of repetitive, hypnotic "worship" music, which has since morphed into the "Jesus Culture Movement," a rapidly rising youth movement spreading the NAR agenda like wildfire across the globe. Some of the techniques used are: Getting kids "high" on the music, telling them it's the Holy Ghost moving, running the kids in lines through "fire tunnels" during intermission, laying hands on them and imparting the Kundalini Serpent Spirit . . . where they often fall down, twitch, convulse, oftentimes as if burning in agony, all in the name of "Jesus," calling it "Holy Ghost Fire," yelling commands to the Holy Ghost such as, "MORE! MORE! MORE LORD!!! . . . DOUBLE IT!! DOUBLE IT!!", etc.
photo: Todd WhiteThis is precisely what Todd White does, always "calling down fire" in the name of "Jesus," which is also precisely what we are warned will be one of the great deceptions of the Beast . . . calling down fire from heaven . . . aka: false signs and lying wonders (Revelation 13:13). Jesus Himself said it would be a deception so powerful, that if it were possible, it would deceive even the very elect.
In Bethel's best-selling book (co-authored by Bill Johnson), The Physics of Heaven (sold in their campus bookstore alongside a plethora of Jesus Culture CDs and a multitude of NAR authors), it states that Christians are “'taking back truths' from the New Age that really belong to citizens of the Kingdom of God. (Kindle Locations 407-408).
One of the Bethel's own "prophets" trained by their Supernatural School unknowingly prophesied to a real practicing witch, telling her "[God] is pleased with you!" and "implored [her] to keep doing what [she] was doing." (http://www.patheos.com/blogs/agora/2015/07/born-again-witch-witches-at-a-pentecostal-church-healings-and-prophecies/)
There are multiple videos and photos evidencing Bethel students on campus field trips, who take classes on "Grave Soaking/Sucking, as well as the Johnsons (Bill and wife Benny) traveling to grave sites to "suck" or "soak" the anointing of the dead from faith healers like William Branham, the very godfather of the NAR, whom they worship like a god and who has multiple, easily verifiable, failed, false prophesies. This practice is an act the Word of God calls "Necromancy" (contacting the dead), condemning it as an abomination to God (Deuteronomy 18:11).
Todd White Receives Kundalini "Annointing" From Benny HinnAnother stunning fact is that Todd White received his Kundalini "anointing" from Benny Hinn. When Hinn laid hands on Todd White, Todd fell back, and Hinn repeatedly and creepily told him he was going to be part of a "great youth movement." This is verifiable on video.
What Christians may find difficult to believe is that Satan himself can indeed heal in the name of "Jesus," but it's "another Jesus" (2 Corinthians 11:4). To verify this, Johanna Michaelsen's book or video testimony The Beautiful Side of Evil, is highly recommended. Her books was the catalyst that delivered author/speaker Warren B. Smith out of the New Age. Both he and Michaelsen are early pioneers of exposing New Age mysticism's creeping into modern Christianity, largely and sadly unaware by most.
As an ex-New Ager myself, I can attest that psychics, Yogi's, Reiki masters, and witches employ the exact same techniques as the NAR, by tapping into the demonic realm of unclean spirits, who supply very personal, intimate information (such as certain ailments or sickness they may have) about the individuals they approach (sort of like an invisible phone line direct to the demonic spirit realm. These "mediums" also employ flattery, telling people how "amazing" they are and how much "Jesus love them." This immediately impresses the recipients, who the mediums then asks if they can lay hands on them to heal them through the power of the "Holy Ghost," while doing it in the name of "Jesus" (another "Jesus" . . . aka Satan). The recipients often feel "heat" or "electricity" (common sensations associated with the New Age practice of Reiki). The recipient are told it is "Holy Ghost Fire" and that they just felt the power or even just received the Holy Ghost. Generally, not one word about sin, repentance, or even the Gospel is used.
Jesus Christ said in the end times, many false prophets would come as wolves in sheep's clothing and that we would know them by their fruits. And the greatest evidence of these falsehoods is that there is always "another Gospel" preached, void of the vital messages that save souls, which Jesus Christ Himself preached: repentance from sin, judgment, hell, fear of God vs. the NAR "Holy Ghost" which is all about an obsession with healing via "signs and wonders," power, seducing people through the emotionalism of music and the flattery of telling people how amazing they are with no conviction of sin and no contriteness or brokenness of spirit before a holy God, even though Jesus told us the ministry of the Holy Spirit of truth is to "reprove [convict] the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:8), a message absent from these mouths of these "faith healers.'"
A false prophet is not always known by what he does preach but often by what he doesn't preach.
There is "another Gospel," "another Spirit," and "another Jesus." In the warning of the Bible, it describing precisely the "Jesus" being promoted by Todd White and the rest of the NAR.
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.—Matthew 7:22-23The most horrifying words in the entire universe:
For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. —Jesus Christ, Matthew 24:24Used and edited with permission.
The New Age Propensities of Bethel Church’s Bill Johnson
Beware of Bethel: A Brief Summary of Bill Johnson’s Unbiblical Teachings
Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture
Todd White - The Importance Of (His) Holy Spirit: