Scoffing And Halloween

Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires (2 Peter 3:3, NLT).

The word “scoffing” in the Greek means deceiving or being deceived through skeptical denial.

The Apostle Peter writes that in the last days “scoffers” will abound.  

They mock truth, denying it by derision, not argument. Satan scoffed at Eve in the first temptation, “Did God actually say…?” We can almost see the glint of evil mirth, as he continued, “You won’t die, but you will experience what a narrow-minded God doesn’t want you to know.”

Scoffing doesn’t argue with truth but sarcasm, by ridiculing those who believe in something, making light of the matter – “Try it; you’ll like it,” “Come on, don’t be ridiculous,” “Open your mind,” “Your parents don’t know what they are talking about.”

A good scoffer often doesn’t need words – just a smirk or a wink is enough to make another feel insecure and doubtful.

A life lived or a philosophy followed, undergirded by mocking truth, is the devil’s ploy.

Consider Halloween. 

The Apostle Peter writes…

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8).

Next time you are with a friend who has a yard decorated in Zombies, blood splatter, skeletons, and witches, say to him, “You know, demons are real.”  

You will probably ignite mockery. Not a debate about demons but a “laugh off” smile, smirk, or glint with the implication, “We are only having fun” or “Come on, loosen up.”

Seventy years ago, C.S. Lewis wrote a fascinating book entitled The Screwtape Letters. The book was a fictional dialogue between an arch-demon, Uncle Screwtape, and his novice-tempter nephew, Wormwood. In the book, Screwtape gives Wormwood lessons on seducing humans.

One of the famous quotes from Screwtape…

There are two equal and opposite errors into which the human race can fall for the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them.

The danger of scoffing is that it allows, in these latter days, both a belief and disbelief at the same time. 

The evil one, prowling like a lion seeking to devour, now struts about on Halloween and in video games turning the imaginations of children to demons – while parents scoff at their actual existence.

Mockery is a cruel master, unleashing hordes of evil, denying their existence, and skeptically laughing, while the actual demons, hiding behind this scoffing, possess, ensnare, and depress.

The book of James considers latter-day scoffing in chapter 4…

God jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us… Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Let your laughter be turned into mourning. Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you (vv. 5-10, NASB1995).

Yes, I believe in fantasy.  

Even C.S. Lewis wrote a book entitled The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. But while fantasy encourages consideration of topics and discussion, scoffing undermines conversation through ridicule.

Believe in the supernatural – both good and bad along with angels and demons – but read the Bible as God’s truth with both.

Don’t scoff!