The Amazing News in Ephesians 2Have your children asked you about halloween? Here's a suggestion for redeeming this holiday. Tell your children: halloween isn't just candy and costumes. Halloween is a man who stood up for what is right. It's about man who wanted everyone to know something important about God.
Who was this man? What was so important? A long time ago, the Christian church got mixed up about salvation. The church started telling people that they needed to do good deeds to earn their way into heaven. Many Christians became scared that they would never be "good enough" for God to love them.
This really bothered Martin Luther. He thought that there was no way he could do enough for God to really love him. But then he read the Bible book of Ephesians. Ephesians 2:8 says "For it is by grace you have been saved through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God." Through those words God revealed to him that 1) no one can earn God's love, and 2) no one has to earn it. God gives his love and his salvation as a gift to each one of us. What do we need to do? Only believe that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. When Martin read this, he was so excited that he wanted everyone to know this good news.
How could he let everyone know? He lived before telephones, television, or computers. So he wrote it all down on a large paper and nailed the paper to a church door on a day when he knew lots of people would be walking around-on halloween (called All Hallows Eve then). Lots of people read Martin's words and began to think about God's free gift of love.
On this halloween, tell your children to try celebrating Martin Luther's way: think about the love that God gives to you and then thank him for his salvation. Try doing a "treat," something unexpectedly nice for someone else--with no strings attached. Not because you have to, but as a thank you to God for his gift of love. And, if you have never accepted God's gift of grace, find out more now by clicking on this link: http://www.backtogod.net/sub.php?cat_id=6&page_id=24 or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.