Believe, Teach and Confess: A Call back to the Reformation

“Believe, Teach and Confess…[1] So begins Concordia, the Lutheran Confessions, Reader’s Edition. From the Formula of Concord, Solid Declaration, XII 40, those who penned this Confession of Faith wrote:

This declaration…is our faith, doctrine, and confession. By God’s grace, with intrepid hearts, we are willing to appear before the judgment seat of Christ with this Confession.[2]

Today is October 31st. For many, that means dressing up in costumes and going around the neighborhood asking for candy and other treats. Yes, it is Halloween. However, the Church Calendar says it is All Hallows Eve the day before All Saints Day. So, you may ask, Why am I starting this blog post with the Lutheran Confessions? Well, let me answer that.

Halloween or Harvest Festival

October 31st is celebrated as Reformation Day mostly by various streams of the Reformation such as the Dutch Reformed, English/Scottish Presbyterians, Swiss reformed and the like. Not too many current evangelical churches celebrate it as the “watershed” day of reforming the Church. I remember when working at “The Mission” an outstation small church from a Pentecostal church in Brooklyn, NY the leaders decided to have a “Harvest Festival” to counter the Halloween celebrations going on around them. At this festival you could dress in costume, but it had to be a Bible character, no ghost, ghouls or goblins permitted. We sang songs and played games and gave out a lot of candy and treats to these children. It was a way for us to get them off the streets of Brooklyn on what was typically a dangerous night. However, I cannot recall there being any mention of Martin Luther or this important day. Instead, we simply embraced the costumes a