October 31, 2022

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”” (Romans 1:16-17).

If you ask most people what today is, they will quickly answer that it is Halloween. And they would be correct. Since November 1st was All Saints Day in the Roman Catholic Church, the night before was called the All Hallows’ Evening, or Halloween. It was this night that people honored their loved ones who had died, similar to the Mexican Day of the Dead. It was believed by some of the more superstitious that on this evening the living can have the best connection with the dead. Nowadays Halloween has become a costumed social event of parties and going door to door for treats.

Back to my question about what today is. The more devout Christians will answer that it is Reformation Day, and they would be correct as well. The great German reformer Martin Luther chose October 31 to post his grievances about the practices of the church of his time. He did so by nailing his 95 points to the door of the Wittenberg Cathedral. Such doors were often used as public bulletin boards. By posting his theological concerns, Martin Luther was beginning what would later be called The Reformation, which gave birth to Protestantism.

Martin Luther reached this history making point in part because of the bible verses from Romans that are today’s Motivation. Luther was convicted by the Holy Spirit that salvation is not earned by human effort, but solely by faith in Jesus Christ.

Perhaps a symbol that unites these events of Reformation Day and Halloween is the Jack-o’-lantern. Christians can be likened to pumpkins. God chooses us from the patch, and washes the dirt from us (by the blood of Jesus Christ). He then reaches inside us to remove the yucky things that sin put there. He then puts a smile on us, and places a light inside so that everyone can see Him in us. We do not do any of this. It is all done through faith in Jesus Christ.

So when we are asked what day it is, we can answer that this is a day that I can let my light shine for Jesus Christ!

Lord God, thank you for redeeming me. Thank you for filling me with light. Help me to let my light shine before others so that they will see it and glorify you. Amen.