It would appear that Tim Challies has taken the broad path of cultural relevance and fear of man in making his decision to espouse a sloppy sentimental theology when it comes to his compromising position on the subject of Christian participation in Halloween.
For these nations, which thou shalt possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and unto diviners: but as for thee, the LORD thy God hath not suffered thee so to do. (Deuteronomy 18:14)
I admit that I’m disappointed to see he’s a rank compromiser on this subject, yet a little leaven leavens the whole loaf and if a man who claims Christ can’t even take a stand and be separated from the world on a subject as clear-cut as participation in a pagan holiday like Halloween, can he really be trusted on the weightier matters of the Gospel? I think not.
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 6:17)
Perhaps even worse Mr. Challies blog pitches his new book entitled “The Discipline of Spiritual Discernment”, all while he’s simultaneously busily dissembling about and defending his participation in a pagan holiday.
Tim, if you’re reading this I ask you in the Lord to please repent of and retract your weak-kneed, lily-livered, effeminate, man-in-a-skirt, compromising position against God Almighty in favor of a false temporal peace with your friends and neighbors. Your post made for a Joel Osteen-esque feelings-fest which – not unlike Smilin’ Joel’s own drivel – was devoid of the admonition of scripture and was clearly man-centered as opposed to being God-centered. Your “convictions” and your “feelings” don’t matter and your responsibility as a blood bought Christian isn’t to your neighbors, nor your wife, nor your children, nor the culture, nor the world, but to the One True and Living God Who has called you out of the world and separated you unto Himself by grace through faith for His Glory alone.
If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:26)
I wonder…why doesn’t Tim Challies dress his children up and send them around the neighborhood begging for treats in June or December? Why is October 31st observed differently in the Challies household than October 11th or October 25th? Isn’t it because October 31st is the observance of a pagan holiday? Friends, it doesn’t take much reflection or introspection to see the truth of the matter and discern what Halloween is all about. Just stick your head out of your front door or drive around the neighborhood and look at the decorations; or perhaps take a short trip to your local Wal-Mart and check out the array of macabre costumes and other Halloween accouterments on display.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. (Romans 12:1-2)
Below is the comment I left in response to Tim Challies compromise:
Compromising the cross of Christ in order to keep up appearances with the neighbors or fit in to the world’s culture is a disgusting and ungodly practice.
Christians are called to be separated from the world unto the Lord. How much clearer could scripture be on this point?
For the life of me I can’t understand why otherwise well informed Christians are so quick to compromise, yet compromise seems especially prevalent when the “kids” are involved. This is the common denominator for many if not most of the Halloween dissemblers…”Buh, buh, buh, the kids!”, though appearances run a close second…”Buh, buh, buh, the neighbors!” What about the Infinite Creator and Judge of the universe? Which is better to offend, God or man? Which is better to fear, God or man?
Of course we can think of all sorts of reasons to lapse into sentimental theology when it comes to our kids, and maybe that’s one of Satan’s most useful weapons against the Lord’s church. Yet he who loves his mother or father, wife or children, or even his very life more than the Lord is unworthy of Him. Take up your cross, Christian!
In our heart of hearts we KNOW BETTER and that explains the pangs of conscience and feelings of compromise the true Christian feels when he follows after the ways of the world instead of the ways of the Lord.
May those who are called by the Name of the Lord boldly stand for His revealed truth and His righteousness and forsake all appearance of evil.