The Origin of Halloween

The Origin of Halloween

Date: 10/31/2010 
Have you ever wondered about the origin of Halloween? Halloween, October 31st, is the last day of the Celtic calendar. It was originally a pagan holiday honoring the dead, and dates back over 2000 years.

MIQ: Most Important Questions Answer Guide by Doug Batchelor

MIQ: Most Important Questions Answer Guide by Doug Batchelor
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Hello, friends. This is Doug Batchelor. Have you ever wondered about the origin of Halloween? Halloween, October 31st, is the last day of the Celtic calendar. It was originally a pagan holiday honoring the dead, and dates back over 2000 years. The name Halloween refers to All Hallows’ Eve, the evening before All Saints’ Day, or November 1st. This was a holiday created by the Roman Catholics in an attempt to convert pagans. The Catholic honored the dead saints on this day that was designated. This is to mirror the pagan traditions that could be traced back to the druids, a Celtic culture in Ireland, Britain, and Northern Europe. Roots lay in the Feast of Samhain, which was annually October 31st, to honor the dead. Samhain signifies summer’s end, or the beginning of November.

Samhain was a harvest festival with huge, sacred bone-fires – that’s where we get the word bonfire – marking the end of the Celtic year and the beginning of a new one. Many of the practices involved in this celebration were fed on superstition. The Celts believed the souls of the dead roamed the streets and villages at night. Since not all the spirits were thought to be friendly, gifts and treats were left out to pacify the evil ones and to ensure the next year’s crop would be plentiful. They also dressed up in disguises to confuse the vengeful spirits. These customs gradually evolved into trick-or-treating. Now, Halloween candy sales average about 2 billion dollars annually, making it, next to Christmas, the most commercially successful holiday for stores and dentists. So, the question is, should a Bible Christian fear the spirits of the dead? Stay with us, friends, we’re going to learn more as Amazing Facts brings you this edition of Bible Answers Live.

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, it’s really not fair that all the credit for October 31st goes to Halloween because this date is also the date that really marks the birth of the Protestant Reformation. This is when Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses on the church doors there at Wittenberg. Hi, friends. You’re listening to Bible Answers Live, and if you have any Bible questions, we invite you to call in. We do have lines open. Good time to pick up the phone and make your call. If you’d like to join us for tonight’s broadcast, that number one more time – get your pencil ready – 800-GOD-SAYS. That’s 800-463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jëan Ross: My name is Jëan Ross. Good evening, friends and Pastor Doug. Let’s begin the program with prayer. Dear Father, we thank you once again that we’re able to open up Your Word this evening. We ask your special blessing upon this program. Be with those that are listening, wherever they might be. We pray for wisdom as we search the Bible for answers. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Amen.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Pastor Doug, as we speak, there are little ghosts and goblins and witches and all the rest of it going from house to house, begging for candy. Of course, I’m talking about Halloween, and you opened the program talking about Halloween. It’s fascinating, the origin of the customs that are associated with that. A lot of it is connected with witchcraft and worshipping of the spirits of dead. How would a Christian relate to all of that?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: First of all, there’s a lot of nice holidays that various cultures celebrate. I think Thanksgiving is especially a culture that Christians can get behind, but of the different holidays, if you’re ever to sit back and question, “Is there a holiday that might be dubious for Christians to participate in?” I think Halloween fits that category. The roots are thoroughly intertwined in a variety of spiritualism: fear of the spirits of the dead, druid priests and their sacred or cultish rights, and it just has a lot of pagan trappings connected with it. I know there’s a lot of people out there just enjoying the innocence – I don’t know how innocent piles of candy really are. Just before the program, I stopped somewhere for lunch, and some people dressed up. You know, I had to laugh. I came in to order. But, when you look behind the veil, this idea that we need to fear the spirits of the dead is pretty diabolical, because the Bible is very clear that the dead are not communicating with the living. The dead don’t know anything until the Resurrection.

Jesus said, “The hour is coming in which all that are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth,” and it’s at the Resurrection He says the hour is coming. We’ve got the resurrection of life and the resurrection of damnation. Resurrection hasn’t happened yet. If a person dies in faith, their next conscious thought is the presence of the Lord. About a thousand or two thousand years may go by from when they died until Jesus actually comes, but until the Judgment Day and the Resurrection, the dead are sleeping a dreamless, unconscious sleep. The Bible is very clear. Jesus said, “Our friend Lazarus is asleep.” So, if folks think they’re being haunted on Halloween or there are spirits of the dead that are communicating with them, are they spirits of the dead or does the Bible say that the Devil has fallen angels? Revelation speaks of spirits of the Devil that go out to communicate and to deceive in the last days. So, I think people need to be very cautious about this idea of ghosts and the spirits of the dead. The Bible’s very clear. The dead are asleep. They don’t know anything. Ecclesiastes 9, Psalm 146, just is a plethora of scriptures that tell us that the dead are sleeping until the Resurrection, until the Judgment. They’re not haunting anybody, and we have a busload of scriptures that we’d like you to consider. Two ways we’re going to do that. One is we have a free offer and I’ll have you tell them about that. The other, there’s a website that you can go to. So, get your pencil ready, and if you want the free offer and the website, we’re going to let you have both.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, the number to call, which is our resource line, if you’d like to order this, which, by the way, is entitled “Are the Dead Really Dead?” It’s an Amazing Facts study guide filled with scripture. To order that resource, call 1-800-835-6747. That’s 800-835-6747. You can ask for the Amazing Facts study guide entitled “Are the Dead Really Dead?” Then, there is a great website, filled with very important information, DeathTruth.com.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Very simple. DeathTruth.com. and actually, we’ve got a family of websites on various Bible doctrines, and this is one of them. Very popular. It’s interesting, we did some research and most of the people that go to this website are inquiring about ghosts. There’s a lot of traffic about ghosts, and people are afraid of death and they want to know “Is there life after death?” and “Are my dead loved ones communicating with me?” So, we recommend you take a look at Death Truth. It will give you the Bible answers on the subject. DeathTruth.com. Let’s go to the phones.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Well, let’s see, we’ve got Sophie, who is listening from New York City. Listening in WMCA. Sophie, welcome to the program. Sophie, you there?

Sophie: Yeah.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hi, and you have a Bible question for us? What’s your question tonight?

Sophie: My question is, in the Woods of Endor, was Samuel really talking or was the witch talking?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good question. It tells us there in the first book of Samuel, in the end of the book, matter of fact, how about you look it up?

Pastor Jëan Ross: 28. 1 Samuel 28:7.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: About Saul, before a battle with the Philistines, he goes to inquire of a witch – now, God had strictly forbidden that people of Israel to communicate with witches or people who were mediums for the dead because they were communicating with evil spirits. Well, Saul was desperate because he’d kind of grieved away the Holy Spirit and God wasn’t speaking to him, so he went to a witch. And the witch supposedly conjured up this apparition, this ghost that was the ghost of Samuel the Prophet. The big question is, does a witch or does the devil have the power to resurrect the dead? No, Sophie. The devil cannot raise the dead. Only Jesus can raise the dead. So, what was this illusion? This ghost, supposedly, that King Saul was looking at? It wasn’t Samuel the Prophet. It was a demon. The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 11, the devil can be transformed into an angel of light. The devil can look like a messenger from God. He can create illusions. So, this was one of the devils – Satan himself or one of the fallen angels – impersonating the prophet Samuel to discourage King Saul, and it worked. The next day, Saul killed himself and they lost the battle. So, yep, it was not the real Samuel the Prophet. Samuel is asleep. Now, in our lesson that we’re offering, got a whole section on that very question in the end of our lesson.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The lesson again, “Are the Dead Really Dead?” and you can order it by calling 1-800-835-6747. We’ve got Craig, who is calling from Ontario, Canada, listening on Joy1250. Craig, welcome to the program.

Craig: Yes, good evening, Pastor Batchelor, Pastor Ross.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening!

Pastor Jëan Ross: Good evening.

Craig: Before I get to my question, I just want to thank you, Pastor Batchelor, and your Amazing Facts team, and I want to praise God for bringing the Weekend and the Word in a couple of weeks to Los Angeles.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, you’re calling from Canada. Do you know someone down there? Are you coming to visit?

Craig: No, I don’t know anybody. My wife and I prayed to God for something like this to happen and answered our prayers and we’re excited to be on our way there.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, we were on the phone today, talking to people down there we’re going to meet with.

Craig: Excellent. My question is in regards to the Holy Spirit. How do I know that the Holy Spirit is directing me to God’s will as opposed to my own will? You know, listening to my own voice?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That is a good question, and it’s a difficult one to answer. Sometimes, we’ll get impressions and we’ll ask ourselves, “Is this my conscience? Is this the Holy Spirit? Is this chemicals in my body that are effecting my brain because of low blood sugar or high blood sugar?” How do you know when it’s the Spirit? The Spirit is such a nebulous person of the Godhead that He’s not tangible, and it’s hard for us, sometimes, to melt it down and put Him in a test tube and say, “Is this the Holy Spirit?” The best way I know of is, first of all, the impressions should be in harmony with the Word. The Holy Spirit, Jesus said, “When the Spirit of Truth has come, He will bring to your remembrance whatsoever I have said.” So, the Holy Spirit reiterates what Jesus said, or the Word of God. Secondly, I think that once you meet that test, there’ll be a peace about surrending to that decision, and sometimes God’s Spirit speaks to us providentially, things happen, and you wonder, “I wonder if this is lining up? That God is trying to tell me something?” Sometimes, God will then send Christian counsel.

The Bible tells us, “In the multitude of counsel there is safety.” If you’re wondering if the Holy Spirit is impressing you, you might share it with other Christians you respect, and they can then confirm it, because you know the Holy Spirit speaks to them. There are a few tests there. Now, there’s a book I can offer you that’s a new book. It’s called, “How to Know The Will of God” and in that book it talks about being led by the Spirit and how can you discern what is the Spirit and what is, you know, our own conscience or our feelings? I do worry sometimes, I meet people that have a hyper-sensitive conscience confusing their fears with the Holy Spirit, and it’s like they’re constantly…it’s kind of like a person that’s witching for water. They’re just turning to the right and the left all the time, waiting to be led by these little voices inside, and you can put yourself on dangerous ground when you do that, so that you’re so impressionable to every little impulse. God’s Spirit often uses our common reasoning guided by His Word. The book is called “How to Know the Will of God” and you just call that number and we’ll send it to you free.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The number is 800-835-6747. And the book is entitled “How to Know the Will of God” and if you call that number, we’d be happy to send that out to anyone who is listening. We have Robert, who is listening on the Internet, calling from Indiana. Robert, welcome to the program.

Robert: Thank you. Good evening.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening!

Robert: My question is, in Matthew 25:5. It says the bridegroom terry represents Jesus. They all slumbered and slept, all the ten virgins, representative of the remnant church.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay. Well, I’ll disagree with one of your assumptions, but keep going.

Robert: Verse six, it says, “And at midnight, there was a cry made.” If they all slept in verse five, who gives the cry that Jesus is coming?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, let’s use the Bible to evaluate itself. The person who would typically announce the approach of the bridegroom was called the friend of the bridegroom. John the Baptist said that’s what he was in his ministry, and then it foretells in the Bible, Jesus said Elijah has come in the ministry of John the Baptist and will come. In other words, there will be a future revelation of John the Baptist. So, God is going to pour out His Spirit, and I don’t know if it’ll be on individual in one place that will be broadcast around the world or a series of individuals, but there will be some that will be filled with the Spirit to revive the Church and to announce the approach of Christ. Does that make sense?

Robert: Someone’s going to be on the tower.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, exactly. You’re going to have someone that will fulfill the role of John the Baptist, who said he was the friend of the Bridegroom.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The context of the parable here, certain events transpired that prophesies predicted would happen just prior to the coming of Christ, and to some degree I think that shakes the remnant – those who are spiritually sleeping. They will awaken, and at that same point in time, you have the Holy Spirit empowering those who are seeking for the Holy Spirit who will proclaim Jesus’s coming, and that will swell to a great outcry. So, you have a culmination of several things, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, but also the fulfillment of certain prophetic signs.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I think, personally, that there’s also going to be a small time of trouble that’s going to shake and wake God’s people. Persecution often wakes up the Church. You with us, Robert?

Robert: Yeah, I think this very cry is going to shake the church.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, I do. There’s going to be a message with power and with God’s Spirit that is going to really wake people up. I’m trying to think what we can send Robert as a support study for this subject, and we don’t really have…Oh, we do have a magazine article called “The Last Elijah Message.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: That would be good. Yeah.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, I wrote an article a few years ago. It’s free at the Amazing Facts website. It’s under our magazine, our inside report articles called “The Last Elijah Message.” If you type that in, you can download that for free, Robert, and I think it’s even a book, but it’s a full-size book that we don’t normally give away, but it will be at the website as well.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The website, of course, is AmazingFacts.org. You can get more information there. Our next caller is Brian and Brian is calling from New York, listening on WMCA. Brian, welcome to the program.

Brian: Good evening, pastors. How are you?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Doing well. How can we help you tonight?

Brian: I have a question on 1 Thessalonians 5:2-7.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay.

Brian: In many other places in the Bible, it states that the day of the Lord so cometh like a thief in the night. In these particular verses in Thessalonians, it states that, “As children of the light, the Lord should not overtake you as a thief.” Does that mean that the true prophets of God will be aware of that day before it comes, kind of like the wise men knew the Messiah was to be born before it happened?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You’re correct. Paul is saying there’s really no excuse for us to be taken by surprise. That’s why Jesus said four or five times in Mark 13, when he’s talking about the Second Coming, He says watch, watch, watch -- maybe five times, I don’t remember – that you aren’t sleeping when your master comes. The very fact that the Lord is admonishing us to be awake, it doesn’t need to overtake us like a thief. For the world that’s not prepared, it’s going to overtake them as a thief and then of course you’ve got 2 Peter 3, where Jesus says through Peter, “The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night in which the heavens pass away with a great noise.” So, we should be ready if we are praying like the parable of the ten virgins, the cry of the bridegroom should be waking up the church so we are ready for that event.

Brian: Does that mean we’ll know the actual day and the time, I’m saying.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Oh, I see what you’re saying. Well, you know, I think Jesus is pretty clear that no man knows the day and the hour. I shy away from anybody that starts to try and calculate an exact date.

Brian: I do, too. I just have a friend that is into that and he showed me these verses. I was just kind of curious.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, the Bible does tell us we can know when the time is near, even at the door. So, God wants us to study the signs so we know when it’s near. But when we start marking it on the calendar, I think that’s a cause for concern and I’d like to go the other direction at that point.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, we do have a study guide dealing with the subject of the second coming of Christ and also the timing: what are the signs related to the coming of Christ? Is there a specific date? All of that is in the study guide entitled “Ultimate Deliverance”, talking about Christ’s second coming. To receive that study guide, call our resource line, 800-835-6747, and you can ask for the study guide “Ultimate Deliverance” and we’ll be happy to send that out to anyone who’s listening. We have Clifford, who is listening from New York on WMCA. Clifford, welcome to the program.

Clifford: Hi, how are you?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Doing well! Thanks for your call, and your question tonight?

Clifford: Yeah. “Absent from the body, present with the Lord.” Can you show me a scripture where it says that?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: It’s not worded exactly like that. Maybe Pastor Ross will help me look that up.

Pastor Jëan Ross: That’s 2 Corinthians 5:6.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: 2 Corinthians 5:6. Why don’t you read that for us, John?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright. Paul says, “So we are always confident knowing that while we are home in the body, we are absent from the Lord,” and then he goes on in verse 8, “We are confident, yes, well-pleased, rather, to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So, that is often rounded off, and that’s why you hear people quote, “To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.” The concept is certainly there. So, were you just wanting to locate that or do you have a question about the verse?

Clifford: Yeah. That’s it.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright. Hey, we appreciate your question. Don’t forget, take a look at the website we have called The Truth About Death. It actually comments on this verse and we do have that study guide, “Are the Dead Really Dead?” What does it mean when it says to be absent from the body and present with the Lord? Does that mean as soon as a person dies, they’re up in Heaven, looking down on earthly history? What does that mean? So, we invite you to ask for that study guide tonight, friends. “Are the Dead Really Dead?”

Pastor Jëan Ross: The number is 800-835-6747, and the study guide is “Are the Dead Really Dead?” Helen is calling from Conway, Arkansas. Helen, welcome to the program.

Helen: I hope I can ask this in a sensible way. I don’t know…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay.

Helen: Where are we at, according to the Jewish calendar on the timeline in comparison to how we count time? I mean, like, we say this earth’s 6,000 years old according to our calculations, our calendar. What does the Jewish calendar – would it still be 6,000 years old?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: No. You know, it’s interesting. The typical Jewish calendar, they’re dating the earth for, like, 5,671 years this time. At this point. I honestly would have to confess, I don’t know how they come up with that number. It’s something that they’ve done in recent years and how they calculate their history. I don’t know if they’re calculating their history from Enoch or something before the flood. I’m not sure what date they’re using because basic math, adding up the ages of Adam and Seth and Enos and on down through Abraham, we can get a fairly accurate number that it’s approximately 4,000 years from creation, or at least from Adam, if you’re just adding up the birthdays, to Jesus. Then, you’ve got 2,000 years from the birth of Christ, roughly, to where we are now. How they come up with a 230-year difference, I don’t really know. But, yeah, they do come up with a different date for that.

Pastor Jëan Ross: An interesting thought on that is, of course, the dating method that supports the idea of about 6,000 years, really, that’s based upon the Old Testament that He shared with the Jewish people as part of the Torah, and it is interesting, why they have a 200-year difference.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, so, you know what? I’m going to have to dig around, find out what’s their starting point or why is there this gap? Because most Catholic and Protestant Christians use the dates that are given in the Bible for the ages of Adam, when his son was born, and you just add them up. I sat once in a coffee shop with a friend and a calculator, and we just went on through these ages and we came up with about the same time period as what they call Bishop Ushers’ Chronology, which puts the earth at just a tad over 6,000 years right now.

Helen: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright. Appreciate your question, Helen. Wish I could give you a better answer. Thank you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, we’ve got Kelly calling from Michigan, listening on WMUZ. Kelly, welcome to the program.

Kelly: Hi, pastors.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening!

Kelly: My question’s about scripture on Genesis 14:16. In Genesis 14:16, Abram calls Lot his brother, and I thought Lot was his nephew.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I ran into this when I worked with the Navajo Indians. I’d meet these church members, and they’d say, “He’s my brother, she’s my sister,” and I’d later find out they were really cousins or nephews. Well, they use the word interchangeably. For them, the word “brother” meant brethren, or family. You’ll find the Hebrews also did that. They used the word in a broader sense, and so when Abraham said, “Are we not brethren?” or “We’re brothers,” he technically was Abraham’s brother’s son, but when Abraham’s brother died in Heron – I think that’s his name they named the town after him – Abraham sort of took Lot under his wing and they stayed together until their flocks and herds got so big that they needed to peacefully part company. But yeah, the word isn’t that what you understand is used interchangeably?

Pastor Jëan Ross: The word brother in there could be brethren, or his family.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah.

Kelly: Alright, that makes sense.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, thank you, Kelly. Appreciate your call.

Kelly: Alright. Thanks, and God bless you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: I think we have time for one more before our break. We have John calling from Mexico, New York. John, welcome to the program.

John: Hi! How you guys doing?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Doing well. And your question?

John: Okay. Revelation 7. It’s in the midst of the tribulation, from what I gather, he talks about the seals, and there’s an interlude. Verse 1 talks about the four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, pulling back the four winds of the earth, so no wind should blow on the earth or the sea or any tree. Then, there’s another angel that comes down and says, “Do not harm the earth and the sea…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: ‘Till the 144,000 are sealed.

John: Yeah. Exactly. It almost implies, to me, that believing that Christians are going to be around during this tribulation time, that there’s only going to be 144,000 seals that protect it from all the tribulation…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: …Time of trouble…

John: …Yes! What’s your take on it?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I’ll do my best to add some light to that. The 144,000 are an example of the Last-Day Apostles. The number twelve is sort of a key. When you look at the different definitions of the 144,000, they all match up with what the Apostles were like. Now, the Apostles were not the only ones saved, but they were a special group the Lord used to preach to everyone else. In the last days, the 144,000 will be similar. They’re going to be a special group the Lord uses to prepare the world for Christ’s return. We have a study guide on that. We’ll send you a free copy, John. All you’ve got to do is ask for “Who Are The 144,000?” and we’ll be glad to send it to you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: That number is 800-835-6747. Again, the book is “Who Are The 144,000?”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Sounds good. Wish we could’ve given you a little more detail. Friends, you can hear that we’re about to take a break and it’s one where it’s not optional. If you’ve just joined us, you’re listening to Bible Answers Live. Get your pencil out, because we’ll be giving you a phone number both to call our studio and also for free resources, websites to all-enhance your Bible study. Got a lot more Bible questions coming in just a minute. We’ve been talking a lot about death. Make sure to take a look at DeathTruth.com. We’ll be back in a moment.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

Pastor Jëan Ross: Welcome back to Bible Answers Live with Pastor Doug Batchelor. This broadcast is pre-recorded. If you have a Bible-related question you can call us from 7-8 PM Pacific Standard Time on Sundays and receive clear and honest answers directly from scripture. Call 800-GOD-SAYS. That’s 800-463-7297. Now, please join us as we look to God’s word for more Bible Answers Live with author and evangelist, Pastor Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Welcome, listening friends, and we’re thankful that you joined us. If you tuned in along the way, this is the Bible Answers Live train, and you’re welcome on board. We take your Bible questions. We do our best to find the answers in God’s Word and share them together. If you have a Bible question, we do still have a couple of lines open. One more time, it’s 800-463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jëan Ross: My name is Jëan Ross and we would like to remind all of our listening friends about the resource that we are providing for free this evening. It’s an Amazing Facts study guide entitled “Are The Dead Really Dead”. You can call our resource line, 800-835-6747 and you can request that and we’ll be happy to send that out to you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And the website!

Pastor Jëan Ross: The website, DeathTruth.com. Filled with great resources, a lot of scripture dealing with a very important subject. Alright, let’s go to the phone lines. Our next call is Shawn, and he is calling from Chattanooga, Tennessee. Shawn, welcome to the program.

Shawn: Thanks for taking my call. I guess being the occasion, I guess you’re aware being that this is supposedly Halloween and all that…I guess my question is, obviously, it seems to me Christians should not be involved in that kind of thing, and much more than that, they should not let their children go trick-or-treating. Wouldn’t you suppose? That’s not something Christians should be involved in, you think?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I personally think that, based on the history of Halloween and what it’s trappings are that it’s got too much association with devils and ghosts and spirits and Hollywood characters that there’s just not a lot of Christianity connected with Halloween.

Shawn: Yeah, and it is personal to me because I’m concerned, especially, in my own family here, that they’re letting this happen. They’re letting children go and do this.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, it’s not uncommon. The argument, of course, is, “But they have fun.” This date is actually kind of a high date for a lot of cultic, satanic activity. Harry Houdini used to do these séances on Halloween and everyone tries to contact the dead. I think some try to compromise and say, “Well, we’re not going to take the kids out trick-or-treating, ‘cause that’s not safe and it’s not Christian. So, we’re going to have another kind of party. Have a harvest party,” so they have an alternate party, but I kind of think it’s nice to just let the day go on by. I did it as a kid. Of course, I wasn’t a Christian. But, we did a lot more tricks than getting treats. There’s a verse.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yeah, there is. Ephesians 5:11. Paul says, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So, if there’s a holiday that’s connected with the “unfruitful works of darkness,” then this would be that holiday. We all feel a little bit conflicted. I walked around the neighborhood with my wife the other day and our good neighbors are decorating their houses for Halloween. They’ve got the witches and the gravestones out there and the spider webs and all this stuff, and you kind of smile, ‘cause you know in one sense it’s just a tradition. But, on the other side, it’s kind of got a diabolical flavor to it. It doesn’t pass the Christian smell test in my opinion. So, I know there’s loving Christians out there that are going to respectfully disagree with me, but when in doubt, I figure you’re better off doing the safe thing. It’s hard to say, “Trick-or-treat for Jesus.” It doesn’t roll off the tongue the way it should.

Pastor Jëan Ross: It doesn’t. You know, I heard once about a family that had just become Christian, Pastor Doug, and their little boy wanted to go out trick-or-treating really bad, but Mom and Dad explained to him how they don’t want to do this anymore. Lo and behold, Mom found Little Johnny dressed up like a ghost, ready to go outside. She said, “I thought we weren’t going to do this.” He thought about it for a while and finally responded and said, “Mommy, I’m the Holy Ghost going outside!” Pastor Doug, I don’t think there’s too much holy about Halloween.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I agree. Now, at the same time, and Shawn might be wondering. Well, if you’re a Christian, you live in the neighborhood, and you’ve got the kids knocking on the door, ringing the doorbell, what do you do? Is the appropriate response to open the door and to yell at them and say, “We don’t believe in Halloween!” and slam the door? In our family, we try and find something good. Whenever someone comes to your door, you’ve got an opportunity to witness. Why lose that? Share something positive. You might have some tracts for the children or something that would be elevating. I don’t think that Christians should be mean or un-Christ like during this time. It’s one thing to answer your door and be gracious. It’s another thing to participate by going out. Anyway, hope that helps. Appreciate your question, Shawn.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, we have Edith, who is calling from Canada. Edith, welcome to the program.

Edith: Hi, Pastor. Good evening, and thanks for taking my call.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening. And your question tonight?

Edith: Yeah, my question is on forgiveness. I have been separated for over two years now, and he’s leaning to divorce. The major cause is my mother-in-law, and I really want to forgive her but I’m still struggling with it, because it’s time I pray and I tell my God I’ve really forgiven her for everything, and another problem triggers me and I remember the old thing again. I’m really struggling with that, because I know if I don’t forgive her, I’m still avoiding the plans my God has for me.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: This is a very important question, Edith. Your issue is with your mother-in-law and how she probably is coming between you and your spouse, and with other people it could be their spouse. It could be a parent or a work associate, but we often have experiences in life where there’s someone who’s really challenged our forgiveness muscles. What’s helped me is I remember that verse in Romans 6 that says, “He that is dead is free from sin.” A dead person doesn’t get offended by what someone else has done. If we see ourselves as new creatures and we die daily, Paul talks about, “I die daily.” In other words, I just die to myself everyday, and my feelings and my rights and what people have done to me and I just say, “Lord, I’m going to live for you. I’m not going to let the devil bind me to these bitter feelings.” Some people have been really hurt. We talk about people sometimes, that say, “You know, I was abused by my step-father or something and I just can’t forgive what he did for years.” I can understand. That would be horrible. But really, when we don’t forgive, it doesn’t hurt the person we’re angry at. We might cut off the relationship and hope that grieves them, but mostly, we’re hurting ourselves. The best thing to do is say, “Lord, I want to be crucified with Christ. Just take this from me.” I think everyone knows that when that person that hurts you is dead and when you’re dead, nobody’s upset anymore. You know? The dead have no hatred. So, reckon yourself, the Bible says, to be crucified with Christ. It’s easier to let it go. The Holy Spirit has to give you this gift. It’s a gift of the Spirit to just forgive and to let these feelings go. And you can be a new creature! So, I hope that helps a little bit, Edith. Would it be okay if we said a little prayer with you right now?

Edith: Oh, yes. Please.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay. Father in Heaven, we just want to offer our prayer. I know others listening have felt the same challenges with bitterness and hurt because of someone who has done something to grieve them or pain them and we pray you just give them grace. Give them the gift of forgiveness, and help them to experience relief and a fresh breeze blowing through their souls because of Your Spirit, and giving them the ability to let these things go and to go on with their lives. I pray you’ll grant them wisdom on how to apply this and ask in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Amen.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Thank you, Edith. Appreciate your question.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Our next call is Elba, and she is listening on WMCA from New York City. Elba, welcome to the program.

Elba: Hi. Thank you for taking the call.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Get real close to your phone. I can barely hear you.

Elba: I just want to know, on Genesis 4:17, Cain and his wife had a son and they named him Enoch. I just want to know why it’s just wife and it doesn’t give a name.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, very few of the wives of the patriarchs are named. Part of the reason is because the Hebrew culture was a patriarchal – patriarchal is through the man, matriarchal would be through the woman. So, they trace their genealogy through the fathers. When you go into the New Testament and you get the genealogy of Jesus, the only time a woman is mentioned – and it always gives her name – is when she played some prominent role in Bible history and it mentions in the genealogy of Jesus, let me see, there’s four women, Sarah, Tamar, Rahab, and Ruth, if I remember correctly, because their stories are told in the Bible. But otherwise, I know it seems sometimes very silent, it doesn’t also mention the ladies’ names, and I’m not trying to justify that. I’m just saying that’s the way it was. They were a patriarchal culture.

Elba: I don’t have a problem with it. I just have a friend who has a problem with it. Doesn’t want to be a Christian because she thinks it’s nonsense, and I just wanted to give her an answer to it. I understand what you’re saying. That’s a good answer.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, it’s sad. I know some people will let that keep them away from their Heavenly Father, which is unfortunate. Well, I appreciate your question, Elba. Yeah, we’ll pray for your friend. God bless, and you have a good evening.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Next caller is Valentine, calling from Michigan, listening in on WMUZ. Valentine, welcome to the program.

Valentine: Thank you. How you doing today?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Doing well.

Valentine: My question…okay, can you hear me?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I hear you, but someone else might be dialing a number on your phone. Are you there? Okay, go ahead. Let’s try it again.

Valentine: Alright. Satan is a fallen angel of God, right?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yes.

Valentine: Okay. So, when God created the earth, he was around then, wasn’t he?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yes. It’s probably after his fall, but yes, he was certainly in existence.

Valentine: So, my question is, did God still create the earth alone or did His angels help Him?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, the angels are the ministering spirits of God, and I don’t know that the angels helped other than it says they sang. In the book of Job, when the Lord laid the foundation of the world, it says, I think, the morning stars sang together. That’s another term used in Genesis for angels, it calls them the stars. But, the devil did not assist…of course, the devil was fallen, I believe, by the time our world was created. God spoke things into existence. I don’t know that the angels created or helped create, anyway.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, in Genesis 1, we read that, “God said, let us make man in our image, according to our likeness.” So, here you have the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit involved in the creation of man, and we are made in the likeness of God. It doesn’t include the angels. We’re not made in the likeness of angels, but in the likeness of God.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. Matter of fact, in Hebrews, it says, “We were made lower than the angels, yet we were crowned with glory and honor in that we were made in the image of God.” So, humans may not have the power of angels, but we’ve been honored in that Christ married Himself to the human family by taking on the form of man. In other words, the incarnation, He actually became one of us, which is a great honor. I hope that addresses the heart of your question, Valentine, and I think we’ve got a couple more people standing by, so.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We’ve got Martin, who is listening from Brooklyn, New York. Listening on WMCA. Martin, welcome to the program.

Martin: Good evening.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening!

Martin: First of all, I wanted to say thank you for picking up my call. And I wanted to mention that I heard there were some false preachers out there in the world, and I want to know why we have false preachers in the world.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, Jesus warned us in Matthew 24. Especially in the last days, one of the first things He warns against, he says, “There will be many false Christ’s and false prophets.” I think in Matthew 24, He says it twice. Speaking of the last days, he warns that many false prophets will arise and deceive many. Who was it, Mark Twain, that said, “A lie will travel around the world while truth is putting on its shoes.” The devil had 400 false prophets of Baal for the one truth prophet, Elijah. The devil always tries to hide the diamond of truth, surrounding it with broken glass. It’s very common in our age.

Pastor Jëan Ross: This shouldn’t catch us by surprise. Jesus did say, and you quoted it, Pastor Doug, Matthew 24:11, talking about events associated with the end of the world, “There will be many false prophets shall rise. They shall arise and deceive many.” And then he says again, “There shall be many false christs and false prophets. They’ll even show great signs and wonders.” So, Jesus said that this would happen prior to His coming.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: It’s not even just those who are teaching goofy false things. Some will have real power, or at least be in cooperation with the devil. They’re going to do signs and wonders. You’re right. Now, by the way, we do have a lesson on the signs of the Second Coming. That study on the Second Coming, you offered a little earlier.

Pastor Jëan Ross: “The Ultimate Deliverance”. To receive that, pick up the phone, give us a call. 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide “Ultimate Deliverance”.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, this is probably a good time to mention that website that deals with prophecy in the last days, talking about false prophets and true prophets. Bible Prophecy Truth especially deals with the last days, and I recommend that for everybody. Matter of fact, Amazing Facts has about 100 different websites. We’ve got more than 100 domains registered. I think we’ve got about 20 that are prominent, active websites. This is website number two. It’s very popular. Bible Prophecy Truth. If you haven’t been there, you need to take a look. Also, very attractive.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, let’s take our next caller. We have Vernalynne calling from Guam, listening on Joy92. Vernalynne, welcome to the program.

Vernalynne: Hello.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hi! We’re glad to have another call from Guam. We haven’t had one in a while, and we’re glad that you called in. And your question?

Vernalynne: Okay, thank you for having my call, and I needed to understand the Trinity. Because being that the Trinity definition is equal to, how come in Mathew 24:36 and also in Mark 13:32, it does talk about the last days and it was Jesus who said, “But about the day or hour, no one knows. Not even the angels in Heaven nor the Son know. Only the Father.” If it is true that Jesus is equal to the Father, how could He say that and not know?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, good question. If Jesus is God the Son, then why would Jesus say in Mathew 24:36, “Of that day and hour,” speaking of the time of His second coming, “knoweth no man, no not the angels of Heaven, but my Father only.” I think it’s pretty simple that Christ, when He came to earth, He laid aside a dimension of His divinity. That’s one of the mysteries of the incarnation. Christ made Himself, is the Colossians? “He made Himself of no reputation, but took on Him the form of a servant, making Himself in the likeness of man.” In other words, think about this for a minute. What was that verse?

Pastor Jëan Ross: That’s Philippians 2:7.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Philippians 2:7. When Jesus came down to earth in the form of a baby, He did not have all the knowledge of the divine swirling around in His mind, just comprehending every detail of the cosmos in His head. He set that knowledge aside and He lived as a man with a knowledge revealed by the Spirit and by the Father as He needed it. Now, I am quite certain that Jesus now, sitting at the right-hand of the Father, the Father has not got a piece of paper and He’s covering it up with His hand and saying, “Jesus, I can’t tell you when it is, Your going back, because You might share it with people and I don’t know if I can trust You with this information.” God the Father is not hiding this from Jesus. But when He was on the earth as a man, He did not have all information. For one thing, I don’t think they even understood the dating methods. Suppose Jesus had said to the disciples back then, “Oh, by the way, I’m coming back on March 9, 2030.” Well, they wouldn’t know what March 9 meant. They didn’t even have that calendar. They wouldn’t have known what 2030 meant, because they didn’t date from years like we do. None of it would have made any sense. So, hopefully that helps. By the way, we do have a book we’ll be happy to send you. Vernalynne, it’s on the Trinity. It’s a book called “The Trinity.” We’ll send you a free copy.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The number is 800-835-6747, and the book dealing with the subject of the Trinity called “The Trinity.” We’ll be happy to send that out.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You looked like you had a thought before I said that. You were going to say on…

Pastor Jëan Ross: What was the thought? Oh, yes! It came back to me. It’s also interesting. When Jesus was on the earth, it seems as though the Father revealed to Christ the information that was necessary for Him to accomplish His work here on earth, but He didn’t have, like you said, all of the knowledge that He has now. He took upon humanity, and He had to learn to talk and to walk just like any child or baby now, and as He grew, He studied the scriptures, and as He read the scriptures, the Holy Spirit revealed things to Him. So, those things that were necessary for Him to accomplish His mission and to reach out and to teach, to preach, those were all revealed to Christ. But the rest, after His resurrection.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yep. He laid that aside. Good question. Always glad to have a call from Guam. Who’s next?

Pastor Jëan Ross: We have Jim, who is calling from Florida, and he’s listening on WTLN. Jim, welcome to the program.

Jim: Yes, hi. I’m attending a class, a teaching on the book of Revelation. I’ve been a Christian for 23 years, and I’ve always understood the book of Revelation, from chapter 4 going forward to be describing yet future events involving final judgments of God upon the earth and so forth. This teaching was saying that all of these things were contemporary to the first century. In other words, the time when they were revealed to John. An example was that Nero was the antichrist and that the kings of the east referred to the Parthian Empire. This was totally foreign to me. I sat there, dumbfounded, listening to this, and not able to reconcile much, if any of it. I just wanted to get your view.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, there are three common approaches to Revelation. One is called Preterism, and Preterism is what you’re talking about. They’re saying pre. Everything in Revelation really happened in the first hundred years. They say Nero was the antichrist and that all of it’s talking about what happened then. Then, you’ve got Futurism, and that really puts everything from Revelation on into the future. You know, when the trumpet is sounded and the voice says, “Come up hither,” that’s the rapture of the Church and everything beyond that is in the future. Then, the third is Historism, and that means that Revelation is covering the history of God’s people from the first coming all the way through the second coming, and that some of it is past. I need to lay it on the table and tell you Pastor Ross and I are probably Historists, as was Martin Luther and many of the reformers. When you get to Revelation 12 and it talks about the woman fleeing into the wilderness and this persecution and the man-child, obviously that’s not happening in the future. That man-child that’s called up to God’s throne – that’s Jesus. So, some of what happens after chapter 4 obviously is talking about things that happened before the Rapture. So, I’d encourage you to also consider the third option, which is that Revelation covers a span of history and there are things beyond chapter 4 that are also past right now. So, what’s the best website on that?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Prophecy Truth would probably be a great resource to take a look at. It’s also important to note that in Revelation, you have a series of sevens. You’ve got the seven churches. You’ve got the seven seals. You’ve got the seven trumpets. Each of those sevens, they really go through the Christian history from the time of the Apostles all the way down to the second coming and beyond. They repeat that same time period in history, but added different emphasis and different aspects of it, and you have a relationship with four and five sort of being a connecting bridge between the seven churches and the seals and you go back and that reemphasizes different aspects of Christian history. So, that needs to be brought in mind when one studies Revelation.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright. I hope that helps a little bit, Jim, and you know, we do have a study guide that talks about Revelation 12. I believe it’s called “The Bride of Christ.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: That’s right.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And it’ll show you that. It’s a really good one. Matter of fact, even our study guide on Babylon. I don’t know, any way to refute it. It’s called “The Other Woman”?

Pastor Jëan Ross: “The Other Woman.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: It deals with Revelation 17. I think it’s a pretty powerful study guide showing that it covers some things that are still past, too.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, Jim, if you call our resource line, 800-835-6747 and ask for two study guides. One is “The Bride of Christ”, dealing with Revelation 12, and the other one is “Babylon” or “The Other Woman” which is Revelation 17. We’ll be happy to send that out to you. Alright, we’re going to have to go to our next caller, and we have Johnny, who is calling from Bronx, New York. Johnny, welcome to the program.

Johnny: God bless you, Pastor.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening, and your question?

Johnny: I love your show. Listen, did you have any scripture that says that when Samuel came back to see Saul, do you have any scripture that says that it was a demon that came?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, the scriptures that you have on that are not there. It doesn’t say, “And a demon appeared to King Saul.” To King Saul, it looked like Samuel. Matter of fact, you read it, I don’t know if Saul ever saw. He had to ask the witch, “What does he look like?” So, Saul is not ever seeing anything.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, there is a verse in 1 Chronicles 10:13, which is a commentary on the experience of Saul. It’s not recorded in Samuel, but it’s repeated in 1 Chronicles. There it says that Saul died for his transgression, which he committed against the Lord, even against the Word of the Lord, which he did not keep, and also for asking counsel for one that had a familiar spirit. A familiar spirit was recognized as being these demonic powers. 1 Chronicles 10:13 makes it pretty clear it wasn’t Samuel. It was a familiar spirit.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, that’s a good one. Those familiar spirits are not good spirits. They’re talking about demons. We have time for one more. We’ve got two minutes.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, we have Bob who is calling from British Virgin Islands.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I’d rather be there. I bet it’s warmer. What’s your question, Bob?

Bob: Good night, gentlemen. It took me years to get to you guys. I have a little trouble and I’m wondering if you guys can…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, let’s condense it to 120 seconds.

Bob: Yes. What race did Jesus belong to? Was he black, because a teacher tried to put him as from Africa, and then the other thing I want to say, hello?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I’m here.

Bob: Yes, and the other thing I want to see is…the race he belonged to and what was His true name before He translated it into from Hebrew?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, well the correct name of Jesus before Hebrew is Yeshua. Yeshua is what we call Joshua, but that was His name actually, Yeshua. Jesus is sort of a Greek translation of that. What was Jesus’ race? My question would be, what does that matter? He’s related to all of us. But Jesus was Hebrew. The Bible tells us He’s from the line of David, but He came to save all mankind, whosoever will. God is made of one blood, all nations. Alright, listening friends. We’re just about out of time. You know, I don’t say it very often, but I think you know that we are only on the air because some of you said, “We appreciate this program. We want to keep you on the air.” Are you one of those people? If you’ve been blessed, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line. You can even donate online. Just go to our website, AmazingFacts.org. Let us know if it’s been a blessing and contact us. God bless, till next week.

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