The underlying message in Hollywood horror movies is that evil triumphs over good. No matter who gets involved, what kind of help, the bad guy, ghost or haunted object rises again and again and cannot be defeated. This subliminal message has two effects. One, it creates the desire to see more movies; two, it creates an unhealthy fear of evil. After all, it ultimately can’t be defeated.
Those of us who are Christians have an obligation to disprove this lie. Evil does not triumph over good. Jesus defeated evil over 2,000 years ago when he climbed on the cross. We are saved. Even though Satan may try to play games with our minds, he can’t change the fact that we have been redeemed . It's our duty to show that truth to the rest of the world.
My family lives close to Hollywood, so my sons were interested in special-effects creature creation and movie makeup. They created a small graveyard in a friend’s front yard to test their experiments and give the local kids a fun treat. Twenty years later they're still doing a haunted house. On a bad night, they have 700 to 1,000 people marching through their themed rooms created in a garage. They don’t know how many people participate on a good night. No one has time to run the people counter.
They are very careful never to allow any exhibits with the cult or spiritual warfare themes. No fortune tellers, mediums, Ouija boards…nothing of that nature. Their exhibits focus on mad scientists, Frankenstein, over-the-top zombies and creepy creatures. Which is not to say that Satan doesn't try to exert his influence over their efforts.
One year, two of my sons and my daughter-in-law drove over to the house to begin assembling the exhibits. They had no more than driven into the driveway when a heated argument exploded into almost a violent outbreak. My youngest son was so angry, he stormed out of the car and marched down the street. As soon as he was gone, my other son and his wife looked at each other. They knew who was behind the attack. They pulled out of the driveway and went after him. In the meantime, he had already come to the same realization and was headed back. Together they joined hands and prayed over the building, their lives and anyone connected with their event. With that prayer covering, the event sailed smoothly onward.
Every year, youth who are attracted to the occult volunteer to help with the hunted house, only to be exposed to constant prayer and Jesus’ example of servant leadership. Numerous families have stated how volunteering has drawn them closer to their teenagers and some have even admitted that this event has helped them rebuild their strained relationships. This haunted house is an amateur exhibit so they are not allowed to charge a fee. But they ask for a donation of a canned good. The day after Halloween, our family takes boxes of canned food to a local food bank.
My children’s haunted house is the classic example of God turning evil into good and using it for his purposes.
Someday my children hope to run their Halloween event as a business. They would love to run similar activities for Christmas, Easter, and the Fourth of July. Our community could use these positive, uplifting experiences, and we know from personal experience that many families are in desperate need of activities. The Lord has not yet opened that path but I'm confident He will expand their ministry in ways they've never dreamed.
In the meantime, they are content to debunk the Hollywood myth that evil triumphs over good. That's the biggest lie of all.