Bob Tamasy: Gloom And Doom Need Not Dominate This Holiday

Thursday, October 29, 2020 - by Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy

Another annual celebration of ghosts and goblins and witches and Jack-o-lanterns is upon us. I’m not among them, but there are some people for whom Halloween ranks as a favorite holiday, surpassing even Christmas and Thanksgiving. Interesting.

 

Driving around – yes, you can still do that even in these COVID days – I’ve noticed several yards when the homeowners have devoted a lot of time making their yards look as scary as possible. Several TV cable networks have scheduled Halloween-themed movies all month. And civic leaders are deciding what social-distancing guidelines are best for trick-or-treating.

 

The Bible says nothing directly about Halloween, unless you accept the little girl’s misinterpretation when she was asked to recite the Lord’s Prayer: “Our Father who art in heaven, Halloween Thy name….” For many folks, Halloween is nothing more than a fun day for wearing silly costumes and passing out candy.

However, it does have its dark side, as depicted by gory horror movies that make it a focal point. Death is a recurring theme, and throughout history there have been those for whom All Hallow’s Eve has been a sacred rite.

 

Much is said in the Scriptures about the inescapable reality and specter of death. For instance, the book of Romans tells us about the problem, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23), as well as its consequence and its remedy, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

 

Referring to Christ’s atoning death for our sins, another passage offers these words of assurance:


“If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin – because anyone who has died has been freed from sin…. The death he died, he died to sin once for all, but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus”
(Romans 6:5-11).

 

James Ward, who for many years served as music director and worship leader at New City Fellowship in Chattanooga, composed a wonderful song affirming that for the follower of Christ, death need not conjure the grim images we often see at Halloween. Instead, one’s passing from this life can indeed be a time for joyous celebration.

 

This upbeat, inspiring tune, called “Death Is Ended,” is based on 1 Corinthians 15:51-55, which declares:


“Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not sleep, but we shall all be changed – in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed…then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, ‘Death is swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?”

 

If you’re observing Halloween this year – in some respects, it seems all of 2020 has been one continuous enactment of Halloween at its worst – I hope for you it’s funny costumes and tasty candy treats. But if you find yourself dwelling on the sobering, gloomy aspects of the day, please take to heart this glorious promise:

 

“The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:56-57).

 

* * *

Robert J. Tamasy is a veteran journalist, former newspaper editor and magazine editor. Bob has written, co-authored and edited more than 15 books. These include the newly published, ”Marketplace Ambassadors”; “Business At Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today’s Workplace”; “Tufting Legacies,” “The Heart of Mentoring,” and “Pursuing Life With a Shepherd’s Heart.” A weekly business meditation he edits, “Monday Manna,” is translated into more than 20 languages and sent via email around the world by CBMC International. The address for his blog is www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com. His email address is btamasy@comcast.net.


Union Gospel Mission Seeks Volunteers To Serve This Thanksgiving Eve

Bob Tamasy: Will This Be A Thankfulness-Challenged Thanksgiving Day?

Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints President Russell Nelson Issues Call For Gratitude


On Wednesday, The Union Gospel Mission will be serving Thanksgiving dinners to homeless neighbors from 1-3 p.m. on the corners of Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Houston Street, and Martin ... (click for more)

So, what are you most thankful for in 2020, this epic year of the novel coronavirus, aka COVID? Finding it difficult to think of something, perhaps? Aren’t you thankful that for most of ... (click for more)

President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued a call for gratitude in a special video broadcast in Chattanooga and throughout the world on Friday, November ... (click for more)



Church

Union Gospel Mission Seeks Volunteers To Serve This Thanksgiving Eve

On Wednesday, The Union Gospel Mission will be serving Thanksgiving dinners to homeless neighbors from 1-3 p.m. on the corners of Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Houston Street, and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Georgia Avenues. Volunteers are needed to pack the dinners earlier that day at the Union Gospel Mission beginning at 10 a.m. and then later that afternoon at ... (click for more)

Bob Tamasy: Will This Be A Thankfulness-Challenged Thanksgiving Day?

So, what are you most thankful for in 2020, this epic year of the novel coronavirus, aka COVID? Finding it difficult to think of something, perhaps? Aren’t you thankful that for most of this year, whenever you have emerged from the relative security and safety of your home, you had to wear a facemask? Just think of the limitless opportunities for making a facial fashion statement ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Tennessee Has 4,404 New COVID Cases, 53 More Deaths

The number of coronavirus cases in Tennessee is 352,376 on Thursday with 4,404 new cases. There have been 53 more deaths from the virus, for a total of 4,519, said state Health Department officials. The state currently has 2,178 people hospitalized from the virus, 5 less than on Wednesday. There have been 312,885 people who have recovered from the virus in Tennessee (89 ... (click for more)

Georgia Has 26 New Coronavirus Deaths, 2,946 New Cases

Georgia state health officials reported on Thursday there have been 26 additional deaths due to the coronavirus. The current total is 8,716. There were 2,946 new cases as that total reached 413,909 confirmed cases of coronavirus. Hospitalizations are at 34,587, up 174 from Wednesday. Here are the numbers by county: Catoosa County: 1,997 cases, up 25; 29 deaths; ... (click for more)

Opinion

County Employees Need A Bonus Too

A few weeks ago we learned that Sheriff Jim Hammond was asking for a second raise. Earlier this year Hamilton County employees were notified that "due to COVID-19" there would be no raises for employees of any kind this year. I guess Mr. Hammond didnt get that memo about no raises. Why is it that some employees will be getting a raise and others are not? That doesn't really ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Why I Am Thankful

For the life of me, I can’t remember when it started but back in the ‘70s, I began devoting my sports column on Thanksgiving Day to off-the-wall stuff of which I was truly and genuinely thankful. Back then I would go to from “76 reasons”, then “77 Reasons”, and then “78 reasons” with every new year. We climbed through 80’s, and the 90’s and it became a tradition. By then it had ... (click for more)