Question:

This one was really on my mind, and I was reminded of a Bible verse: "Be angry and sin not." I'm not sure where it came from, but I remember hearing it from another brother.

The thing is that I see all these costumes. You have the girl costumes which are skimpy and you have the gory costumes for boys. It sickens me, Jeff! The thing that I hate the most is the witch thing. If only people knew what real witches and Satanists do! They sacrifice people, Jeff, and the world refuses to believe it! I stormed out the store only to see a barrage of pumpkins and little girls talking about what they were going to wear.

OK, either I'm starting to see more from God's perspective or things are getting more perverse. Jeff, I honestly wanted to take a hammer and destroy the pumpkins and designs. Forgive me, but is this wrong?


Answer:

The verse you were trying to remember says, ""Be angry, and do not sin": do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil" (Ephesians 4:25-26). James says something similar: "So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God" (James 1:19-20).

Yes, it is wrong to destroy pumpkins because it does nothing to alleviate the problem. Destroying pumpkins belonging to other people, which can be used to make some wonderful pies, doesn't do a thing for inappropriate dress or behavior. You can't force people to do what is right, you have to convince them that certain behaviors are wrong and there is a right way to behave. And you have to set the proper example.

Remember what Paul said, "And why not say, "Let us do evil that good may come"? -- as we are slanderously reported and as some affirm that we say. Their condemnation is just" (Romans 3:8). Destruction of other people's property is wrong. It doesn't matter if you imagine good coming from it or not, it remains wrong.

"For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe" (I Corinthians 1:21).

It may be slower, but it is more effective and lasts longer.