Remember when you were a kid and you got to dress up for Halloween? For one whole day (some would argue its more like a season) we take time to honor witches and vampires and monsters of all kinds. Of course, many of us just wanted to dress up like our favorite Star Wars character or maybe be a Hobbit (and many of us still do!) but that’s not the point. The point is that Halloween is the one time of year when all things occult are firmly in focus for the entire nation. And that brings us to an interesting passage of scripture: Mark 5:1-20. I suggest you take the time to read it; its one of the most Halloween appropriate stories in the Bible.
The story goes that Jesus and his disciples come across a man who has been possessed by a demon. Seriously. A demon. A DEMON! And this guy is straight out of a horror film; he has inhuman strength, lives in a graveyard, rants and screams uncontrollably, and wanders around cutting himself with sharp rocks… You can totally see this guy in a Hollywood horror script, right? Except he’s not made up. He’s real. And he’s not a monster or villain, he’s just a guy with a serious spiritual problem.
Without much preamble or ceremony, Jesus casts the demon out of the man and when people come to investigate, the Bible says, “They came to Jesus and observed the man who had been demon-possessed sitting down, clothed and in his right man… and they became frightened.” So they’re freaking out because the demon-possessed man isn’t!
Listen, most people don’t put much stock in ghosts and witches and such, but the reality is that there are things that go bump in the night, beings that we can’t always see or smell or touch that mean us great harm. As much as we want that not to be true, the Bible points to a different reality, one that can be truly frightening for the simple fact that it is real.
Demons are real! Hell is real. But, then, so too are angels and heaven. And so, too, is the power of Jesus to bring light to the dark, to deliver us from evil, and to bind the Enemy wherever he might be.
And if all that is true, then where do YOU stand with regard to eternity? Happy Halloween.