One of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s early stories is called “The Hollow of the Three Hills,” in which a woman seeks counsel from a witch and receives nothing but bad news. That appears to be the witch’s point, to break the woman’s heart, and that is the reason I believe her revelations to be complete lies. The story doesn’t say the witch is lying, but I see no reason to believe she isn’t. After all, she is in the service of the father of lies.
Deception is my primary filter for viewing occultic things. On the one hand, trusting the stupid words of a horoscope is a great way to hamstring your life. On the other hand, hoping for special advice from a medium or psychic is like trusting your money to Bernie Madoff. Even if what you hear rings true to you, it’s very likely to be a lie.
So it troubled me hear a caller to a radio program about Halloween say that she understood there were witches in her area placing curses on Halloween costumes and she and her church were praying against them this weekend. I suppose prayer against the enemy for any reason is a good thing, but I don’t remember anything in the Bible and I can’t find anything online from trustworthy sources to support the idea that these curses mean anything.
Note the list of occult practices in Deuteronomy 18:9-12 (John Piper has a great sermon on this.)
“When you come into the land that the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominable practices of those nations. There shall not be found among you anyone who burns his son or his daughter as an offering, anyone who practices divination or tells fortunes or interprets omens, or a sorcerer or a charmer or a medium or a necromancer or one who inquires of the dead, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD. And because of these abominations the LORD your God is driving them out before you.
Most of these are ways someone would seek knowledge, and the rest don’t suggest to me the legitimacy of casting spells on objects in order to harm innocent people who use them. Perhaps the “charmer” is someone who places charms on things, but is there any real power behind this? Isn’t this just another deception? I think it is. Moreover, I don’t believe Christians have a reason to fear “cursed” costumes, but the Spirit of the Lord within them is far greater than anything the devil is able to do.
Such curses have no power. They are like the empty food of lifeless idols. And though other methods of the occult are dangerous lies for anyone who trusts them, I believe these curses are worthless.