Zombies, Ghosts, Demons, and Saints #4 Saints
Zombies, Ghosts, Demons and Saints #4 Saints
I know I just committed a Calvary Chapel mortal sin—celebrate Halloween, Yikes, pastors gone the way of the world. Those secular celebrations of Halloween are exactly what you make them out to be. You want to fill them with the demonic, you certainly can. If someone kills cats and conducts a black mass and worship some goat head that’s there sin. You want to go on a hayride, bob for apples, dress up and have a good time, have fun. But in the midst of your fun make sure you celebrate Halloween.
Halloween comes to us from pagan Celtic festival called Samhain (pronounced Sah-ween). Celebrated between fall and winter the belief was that the ghosts of the dead, that night, could mingle with the living. The traditions are rich and varied. Bonfires to keep the ghosts away, wearing masks so if you had to go outside after dark the ghosts would recognize you as one of their own and leave you alone, putting treats on the door step so ghosts would take those and leave your house alone. There were also future looking traditions dealing with apples and nuts to determine if you were going to be married within the year. By the 6th century Christianity became so dominate that the festival was turned into a holiday, a holy day. The day started at sunset on October 31 and ran till unset November 1. Traditionally October 31 dinner was fasted, and then you feasted during the first day of November .
Samhain became All Hallows Eve, all saints day, a time set aside to remember the faithful who have died. Every one leaves a legacy, some are great and well known, others not so much, but we all touch the lives of others. Halloween was set aside to remember those legacies of Godly men and women who are no longer walking this earth with us.
Do you see what
this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering
us on? It means we'd better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never
quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who
both began and finished this race we're in. Study how he did it. Because he
never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with
God—he could put up with anything along the way: cross, shame, whatever. And
now he's there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find
yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that
long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into
Heb 11:1-2 (MSG)
Now faith is being
sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
Heb 11:1 (NIV)
Some may say that
faith is unreasonable. You believe
without evidence, without proof. That’s
what our saints did. Faith motivates
practice. The starting place of faith begins with a spiritual awakening. A
person realizes that something is not right in their lives. As they seek for answers, as they sincerely
seek for truth, the Holy Spirit starts His work, often unseen, undetectably
towards the answer. The truth is that
life is messed up because you are messed up.
The truth is the Jesus died to turn your mess into a masterpiece. The truth is Jesus rose from the dead so that
you have a living legacy to show you how to live. When one acknowledges the truth and asks God
to accept their faith, that person begins their practice. It’s your practice of
the faith that leaves a legacy.
Acknowledge, believe, commit, and then ask God to help you live a life
of faithfulness, He will answer your prayer and you will know it, deep inside
you will know. If you have not done so,
today is a good day to ask. If you do
let me know I want to encourage you as you begin a new chapter in your life.
To all in Rome who
are loved by God and called to be saints:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus
Believers are saints. When God accepted your faith, you became a saint.
This Halloween light a candle. Not to scare the ghosts and darkness away, there are no ghosts, but rather a flame to remind you of their light. Their light was lite by Jesus who is the light of the world (John 8:12). When we walk in His light we do not stumble, the light of the saints, brings added encouragement (John 11:10). Concentrate not on the loss, but on their love. Recall the great promise we have as saints:
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NLT)
“…the Christians who have died will rise from
their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on
the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we
will be with the Lord forever.”