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The Icons of Halloween

Discussion in 'Messianic Judaism' started by davidbenephraim, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. davidbenephraim

    davidbenephraim Member

    I understand fully that we are a little over a week after the celebration of Halloween. I tried to prepare this thread to post on a day that was closer to October 31st. Fortunately and because Yahweh has blessed me with the ability to work and a full-time job so that I can fulfill Torah by providing for my family, I didn't have enough free time to get it done. So I am posting this thread today in November because I was otherwise too busy taking care of my family to do it sooner.

    In 1990, I was an Apostolic Oneness Pentecostal Christian. I was attending weekly services at the United Pentecostal Church at that time. I remember one night as I was reading my Bible, Yahweh spoke to me and said, “The icons of Halloween.” When I heard those words in my spirit, I knew that Yahweh was telling me to look at the icons of Halloween in the light of the Bible. As I considered each icon of Halloween, I examined it under the microscope of what the Bibles says and what I saw made me turn from celebrating this evil holiday. Because of the limited space at C/F I will only address the icon of Halloween commonly known as the witch.

    The Witch

    The witch is an icon of Halloween. Whether we dress up in witch costumes and/or we decorate our homes/businesses with pictures of witches, this icon of Halloween permeates the holiday. Witches practice witchcraft pure and simple, and Yahweh addresses the issue of witches and their witchcraft in the Bible. For example, it is written:

    “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of Yah”Galatians 5:19-21 (KJV)

    Here in the Bible, Rav Sha'ul enumerates the works flesh. Sha'ul names witchcraft as one of those works of the flesh. Rav Sha'ul was a Jew and his understanding of witchcraft was based on how the Torah (first five books of the Bible) defines witchcraft. Deuteronomy is one of those five books. And there we read the following:

    “There shall not be found among you any one…that uses
    divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer
    . For all that do these things are an abomination unto Yahweh: and because of these abominations Yahweh your Elohim does drive them out from before you. You shall be perfect with Yahweh your Elohim”Deuteronomy 18:10-13 (KJV)

    The following are word definitions I feel are an important and a necessary part of this topic which will help give us a clearer understanding of what the Bible is saying here and how this Torah mitzvah applies to us today.

    1) divination → qesem [Hebrew, Strong’s # H7081] = “The act of divining; a foretelling future events, or discovering things secret or obscure, by the aid of superior beings, or by other than human means” — Webster’s 1828 Dictionary

    Modern forms of divination include:

    a) crystal balls

    b) tarot cards

    c) palm reading

    2) observer of times → anan [Hebrew, Strong’s # H6049] {a.k.a. soothsayer}“A foreteller; a prognosticator; one who undertakes to foretell future events without inspiration” — Webster 1828 Dictionary

    Modern practices of a soothsayer include:

    a) astrology

    b) horoscopes

    c) star charts

    3) enchanter → nachash [Hebrew, Strong’s # H5172] = “One who enchants; a sorcerer or magician; one who has spirits or demons at his command; one who practices enchantment, or pretends to perform surprising things by the agency of demons” — Webster’s 1828 Dictionary

    Modern practices of an enchanter include:

    a) magic potions

    b) spell casting

    c) performing illusions or pretending to perform magic tricks (i.e. pulling rabbits out of hats and/or slight-of-hand card tricks with or without the agency of demons)

    4) witch → kashaph [Herbew, Strong’s # H3784] = “A woman who by compact with the devil, practices sorcery or enchantment” — Webster’s 1828 Dictionary

    5) charmer → chabar [Hebrew, Strong’s # H2266] = “One that charms, or has power to charm; one that uses or has the power of enchantment”

    Modern practices of a charmer include:

    a) lucky/magic charms (e.g. rabbit’s feet, horse shoes, four leaf clovers, etc.)

    b) magic amulets

    c) crystals for protection against evil

    6) consulter with familiar spirits → sha’al ob [Hebrew, Strong’s #’s H7592 and H178] {a.k.a. medium/spiritist} = “One who evokes the dead, a ghost, possibly from their mumbling like the sound of wine poured out of the wineskin” — Ancient Hebrew Lexicon of the Bible

    Modern practices of a medium/spiritist include:

    a) ouji boards

    b) séances

    7) wizard → yiddeoni [Strong’s # H3049] = “One with special knowledge” — Ancient Hebrew Lexicon of the Bible

    8) necromancer → darash [Strong’s # H1875] = “One who pretends to foretell future events by holding converse with departed spirits; a conjurer” — Webster’s 1828 Dcitionary

    Modern practices of a necromancer include charlatans who pretend to foretell future events or who pretend to converse with the departed spirits of our loved ones for the purpose of bilking people out of their money.

    In the ancient times, the Kingdom of Israel was split and became two kingdoms. This split occurred during the reign of King Rehoboam. These kingdoms were called Israel and Judah. Israel was known politically as the Northern Kingdom and Judah was the Southern Kingdom. The ancient prophets of Israel called these two kingdoms the House of Israel and the House of Judah. In Jeremiah chapter 3, the Prophet Jeremiah refers to these two kingdoms simply as Israel and Judah.

    The Northern Kingdom or the House of Israel consisted of the 10 Israelite tribes of Reuben, Dan, Naphtali, Asher, Joseph (represented by Manasseh and Ephraim), Gad, Issachar, Simeon, Zebulon, and Levi. The two tribes of Benjamin and Judah were the Southern Kingdom or the House of Judah. A remnant of the tribe of Levi left the Northern Kingdom and dwelt in the Southern Kingdom because King Jeroboam of Israel had removed the Levite priests from their position and replaced them with other Israelites from other tribes as priests in his temples.

    It was at this point the Northern Kingdom or the House Israel began walking in the paganism, idolatry, and witchcraft of the Assyrians. The House of Israel practiced the same forms of witchcraft defined above but not necessarily in their modern forms or practices of today. The House of Israel made herself a rebellious and disobedient bride to Yahweh through her spiritual adultery. In Jeremiah, we read the following about Israel, “Yahweh said also to me in the days of Josiah the king: ‘Have you seen what backsliding Israel has done? She has gone up on every high mountain and under every green tree, and there played the harlot. And I said, after she had done all these things, ‘Return to Me.’ But she did not return. Then I saw that for all the causes for which backsliding Israel had committed adultery, I had put her away and given her a certificate of divorce’”Jeremiah 3:6-8 (NKJV).

    It broke Yahweh’s heart to give the Northern Kingdom of Israel a spiritual divorce and to put her away from being His bride, but Yahweh had no choice. Because of Israel’s paganism, idolatry, and witchcraft, she became a spiritually adulterous bride to Yahweh. If we as true believers in Yahweh dress up as a witch on Halloween or if we decorate our homes/businesses with pictures of witches for the holiday, don’t we provoke Yahweh to jealousy by reminding Him of ancient Israel’s spiritual infidelity? Isn’t this like an adulterous wife who reconciles with her husband but once every year on her ex-lover’s birthday she puts a picture of her naked ex-lover on her living room wall provoking her husband to jealousy by reminding him of her infidelity?

    If we really and truly love Yahweh with all of our heart then why would we want to do anything that would provoke Him to jealousy and remind Him of the heartbreak He suffered when He spiritually divorced the 10 Northern Tribes of Israel? Even if we don’t dress up as a witch or decorate our homes/businesses with pictures of witches ourselves, if we participate in Halloween even to the degree of merely handing out candy to the trick-or-treaters, are we not encouraging others to dress up as a witch? Are we not encouraging others to provoke Yahweh to jealousy by reminding Him of ancient Israel’s spiritual infidelity? Isn’t this like the friend of an adulterous wife encouraging the wife to put a picture of her naked ex-lover on her living room wall?

    Look I’m not speaking this way to judge or condemn anyone or to put anyone down. I’m speaking this way because I believe it is now high time for the body of believers to take the blinders off about this pagan holiday and examine Halloween in the different light of Scripture. And please don’t cop out of this by saying something like,
    “There’ll be people who are going to dress up as witches for Halloween and/or decorate their homes/businesses with pictures of witches even if we don’t participate in Halloween.” What other people do or don’t do should have no bearing on the responsibility we all have to guard the Covenant relationship each one of us has with Yahweh through Yeshua.

    In the days of Moses, there were other nations who made golden calves and worshiped these pagan images. But at the bottom of Mount Sinai it wasn’t 3,000 Egyptians or 3,000 Assyrians or 3,000 Babylonians Yahweh destroyed because of the golden calf. It was 3,000 Israelites who were in Covenant with Yahweh that were destroyed because of the golden calf. Halloween is just another golden calf man has made which provokes Yahweh to jealousy. Why would a true believer in Yeshua want to have anything to do with provoking Yahweh to jealousy?

    In principle Rav Sha'ul said it this way, “I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that all our ancestors {who left Egypt} were under the cloud, and they all went through the sea. They were all united with Moses by baptism in the cloud and in the sea. All of them ate the same spiritual food, and all of them drank the same spiritual drink. They drank from the spiritual rock that went with them, and that rock was the Messiah. Yet, Yahweh was not pleased with most of them, so their dead bodies were scattered over the desert. These things have become examples for us so that we won't desire what is evil, as they did. So don't worship false deities as some of them did, as Scripture says, ‘The people sat down to a feast which turned into an orgy’….Do I mean that an icon of Halloween is anything, or that a witch costume is anything? Hardly! What I am saying is that the icons of Halloween and witch costumes which people make are made to demons and not to Yahweh. I don't want you to be partners with demons. You cannot drink Yahweh’s cup and the cup of demons. You cannot participate at the table of Yahweh and at the table of demons. Are we trying to make Yahweh jealous? Are we stronger than He is?” — 1st Corinthians 10:1-7 & 19-22 (GW)


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  2. Heber Book List

    Heber Book List Theologian [Applied Theology]

    United Kingdom
    I think the vast majority of the Messianic people (Jews and Gentiles) on these fora are well aware of Hallowe'en and its pitfalls and would have nothing at all to with it.

    What is the point you are making with your post, please? :)
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2017
  3. Open Heart

    Open Heart Well-Known Member

    United States
    I think of Halloween as an imagination celebration. It's a time for kids to play dress up to the ultimate. I know that in recent years adults have taken it on, and I think it should stay a kids holiday. It's FUN. God wants us to enjoy his creation.

    The monsters in Halloween DON'T EXIST. For example, the "witches" don't at all resemble real life witches -- real life witches don't have ugly wart faces, wear pointy hats, and fly on broomsticks. The death imagery is simply attached to the great Holy Days it is connected to: All Saints Day, and All Souls Day
  4. visionary

    visionary Your God is my God... Ruth said, so say I. Supporter

    Día de Muertos
  5. Open Heart

    Open Heart Well-Known Member

    United States
    Yes. I think it's wonderful how in Mexico they don't deny how death exists. They face it squarely in the face.
  6. Yeshua HaDerekh

    Yeshua HaDerekh Men dream of truth, find it then cant live with it

    United States
    Eastern Orthodox
    Nachash also means "serpent" or "snake"
  7. Rachel Rachel

    Rachel Rachel Messianic/Church of God 7th Day Supporter

    United States
    Well, you'd be wrong if you thought that.
    I think his point is to inform/remind.
  8. Heber Book List

    Heber Book List Theologian [Applied Theology]

    United Kingdom
    Maybe - but he is not letting us know! :)
  9. davidbenephraim

    davidbenephraim Member

    I think you are right. The vast majority of Messianic people are well aware of Halloween and its pitfalls. However, not every believer at C/F is aware. Someone has to be willing to be the watchman on the wall and be willing to sound the warning shofar. Rav Sha'ul wrote the following:

    “Have nothing to do with the useless works that darkness produces. Instead, expose them for what they areEphesians 5:11 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW).

    As Yahweh's servants, we have a duty to stand up and sound the warning to help wake up any members of Yeshua's body who may be participating in any fruitless work of darkness. Every year, Messianic believers go through a Torah cycle that begins the first Shabbat after Sukkot. Just because we (Messianic believers) are well aware of the Torah instruction regarding Shabbat, does that mean we should stop teaching it or even not discuss Shabbat related issues here at C/F?

    There are many people who can have the opportunity to receive good Torah teaching here at this M/J forum who would never set one foot in a Messianic congregation. The point of my thread is to not remain silent on these kinds of issues but to rather expose them as Rav Sha'ul said. The reason I posted this thread here at the M/J forum is because the C/F administers won't allow me to post this thread anywhere else here at C/F. Posting this thread at the Baptist or Methodist forum could really offend those believers because many of them see nothing wrong with Halloween.