The Harry Potter Book Series by J. K. Rowling (Bad Fruit) ~With a Side Note on Christians and Halloween
As stated in the “Disclaimers and Copyright” page, this occult fantasy series, by J. K. Rowling, will be posted in The Berean Library® for access to the helpful book reviews which reveal the spiritual dangers of such material. Marcia Montenegro, who offers these reviews (below), is a former professional astrologer, New Ager and practicing occultist. You can read more about her background here.
Harry Potter is not typical merchandise sold in Christian bookstores, of course. Then again, there is at least one named Logos Bookstore, in Oak Park, IL, that does! The second point is that it finds itself on the shelves of many professing Christian homes and Christian schools, like Geneva Schools, for instance. They have students, here and here, who named Harry Potter as their numero uno favorite book.
Jumping on the band wagon with the rest of the world for this highly acclaimed work, “the most popular series in the history of literature,” regardless of its remarkable details for demonic, occult techniques has astoundingly been the norm for the Christian community. From what I have observed, I’m guessing its 75% for it. Twenty-five percent against it. Again, that’s just an educated guess. Maybe, it is more like 90-10. It appears what this author has to offer her audience has taken front seat, for many who claim the faith, over what the LORD has said in His Word.
As a side note, perhaps, there is a correlation that professing Christians who are fans of Harry Potter are also those who participate in the dark, spooky, sinister holiday of Halloween without the bat of an eye (pun slightly intended). I am not referring to those parents who have struggled with what to do with this holiday and their kids, with all the pressures of the culture, family members and such who do celebrate it. I understand that. As a Christian mother of 5, I have been there, right in the middle of all the pressures.
Not to expound on Halloween’s Celtic origins invoking pagan practices to protect them from anticipated evil spirits reeking havoc the night before All Saints Day. That’s November first. The calendar day that the Catholic religion joined with the Celtic Day of Harvest to remember the martyrs of the Catholic church. And not to debate on where and how WICCA and Satanism fits in or its documented history of dark progression and crime over the decades, just in the States alone. But the point I wish to drive is this undeniable fact. Halloween has been and continues to be filled with and symbolized by sorcery/magic and witchcraft/divination, more than ever!
No matter how un-Halloween Christian parents have tried to make All-Hallows’ Eve for their little ones, like I did for a few years before growing in biblical discernment, sound doctrine and believing a book called, “Redeeming Halloween ~Celebrating Without Selling Out,” by Kim Wier and Pam McCune. It’s just not going to happen. I had been against having anything to do with Halloween once I had become a believer. The bar was set for me. Then, I had heard an interview in the early 1990′s on WFCJ Christian Radio. A former Wiccan, Satanist and Occultist that had become a Christian exposed the dangers of Halloween, especially toward animals and children, on that program. Such disclosures included animal sacrifices, praying to Satan over trick or treaters and abducting children in order to execute their wicked rituals. After hearing that information from a former member of such groups, turned fellow believer, more than ever I did not want my kids, whenever I had kids of my own, to be out on the streets on Halloween night! Ironically, this book lowered that bar and drove me and my kids back into the Halloween scene, trying to Christianize it. This book was the ironic catalyst for “selling out” to Halloween, giving into the pressures of the world to do so with a rationalized ‘Christian’ angle authored by these two women, endorsed by Focus on the Family and found in, none other than, a Christian bookstore.
There is absolutely no equivocation that there are all kinds of demonic influences, techniques, and characters which find themselves at home with Halloween. Americans dive into the boiling cauldron of new horror films being released. Rentals or pre-pay selections of old ones, like Halloween, The Exorcist and Frankenstein, etc., sore! Scary haunted houses are open for business. Portrayals of witches, crystal balls, spells and potions, bloodiness and zombies, ghouls and gore, Freddie Cruger, Dracula, Satan and on and on and on are everywhere.
One of these demonic-looking characters, or more like a montage, is bound to show up at your door, or brush by you and your kids on the sidewalk, before the night of trick or treating is over. All while one may be attempting to provide an innocent and biblical experience, “we’re going to be different, shine our light and dress-up like Bible people” for a good time of fun and candy collecting for their little ‘King David’ and ‘Esther.’ Then there’s the decorated-to-the-nines Halloween house on the next street over that your little Johnny and Susie are completely taken by. That house steals the show for them! You find yourself dreading that house of horrors. That house that you were hoping to avoid, knowing in your heart, this is wrong.
There’s just no way around it. Halloween is a dark holiday filled with fear inducers. There are many who work hard with their time, businesses and resources to make it and keep it as such. Many of Halloween’s frightening experiences stuck with me throughout my childhood into early adulthood, producing nightmares, fear of the dark and fear of being home alone.
Halloween is not a traditional Christian holiday of the true church. It never was nor is intended to be. And to compare it to Christmas, or the jack o’ lantern to the Christmas tree, as this particular writer from CARM did, is way off the mark because the two intentions of these holidays’ celebrations have nothing in common. They are incomparable. Therefore, it should not be attempted by Christians to integrate, or “redeem,” it in order to participate and celebrate it somehow in a Christian way as this book wrongly teaches. That’s just simply not biblical. Further, comfortableness, as mentioned in the above link by CARM, as a way to sort through practicing Halloween or not, is not the way to measure, discern or judge. Comfortableness is a feeling and is deceiving. Better idea. Be like a good Berean, instead (Acts 17:11).
To be clear, I wish to only disagree with and discourage fellow Christians celebrating and participating in Halloween with the goal of attempting to restore it as a Christian holiday (which it never was). Even more so, taking our children out on the streets while this dark event is taking place. I do not at all mean that we should divide with those who do or disagree with churches having alternatives to offer their congregations. In fact, local churches offering alternatives is exactly what I want to encourage. And while that is going on, if there is a group of adults at one’s church who would like to minister to their community to “treat” families with the light of the True Gospel. Then by all means, a resounding, “Yes!” But keep the kiddos back at church with their wholesome activities and Christian fellowship. There is the issue of parental responsibilities regarding protection of our children that I am hoping to bring into consideration, while we are teaching and training them in the way they should go.
As Isaiah 5:20 says, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness…” Marcia Montenegro notes in her reviews that Harry Potter also does this by portraying the character Harry, who is a wizard and who becomes an avid liar and disobeys his parents, as good.
Not only are these Harry Potter books, and others like it that promote ever-increasingly popular occult teachings, dangerous to one’s spiritual perception and condition, by enticing and luring people, children and adults, into forbidden practice; therefore, away from truth (Jn 17:17). But to engage in such entertainment, specifically, is a sin. The latter being the greater issue and spiritual danger at hand that I would like to emphasize. Each must make a decision for themselves, I understand. But I am convinced, by God’s Word, that believers should be separated from Harry Potter and all its counterparts, like Halloween.
The bottom line: God calls His people to be holy like Him; set apart from the wickedness of the world (Leviticus 19:2; 1 Pt 1:16; James 4:4). Believers are not to have anything to do with sorcery (magic), witchcraft (divination) or necromancy (consulting mediums, spiritists for communicating with the dead) (Lv 19:26; Dt. 18:9-14; Isa 8:19; Gal 5:20; Rev 21:8). Such things are “detestable” to the LORD. They are ”evil” and “provoke the LORD to anger” as Manasseh did (2 Ch 33:6).
Brethren, we are encouraged from 1 Jn 5:4 to be an overcomer of the world and all its temptations and distractions that wage war against us and our souls, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith.” And that faith is the eternal gift of God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Rom 6:23), which is joined with repentance (Acts 20:21).
Marcia Montenegro’s Reviews, From Christian Answers for the New Age (CANA):
Also recommended is Marcia’s book, Spellbound ~The Paranormal Seduction of Today’s Kids