Thursday, October 29, 2009

"And the evening and the morning..."

At Evangel, David Wayne provides the complete text of a tract by Steve Carl that explains the origin of Halloween and its alleged pagan associations. In the course of doing so, he explains something about the biblical reckoning of a "day" that has been largely forgotten:
The festivities traditionally began the night before, because until recent times both Jews and Christians began their day at dusk. This is not the result of culture or superstition, but because God made them that way (”… and the evening and the morning, were the first day”, etc.). So, to the early Church the evening of a Saturday, for instance, was the night before, not the night after — Saturday began with Saturday-evening (what you and I would call Friday night). In fact, what we call “Christmas Eve” today, was originally the evening of/before Christmas-Day. The same is true of New Year’s Eve. Similarly, the Hallowed Day began with the “Hallowed Even’,” which was ultimately contracted to the “Hallowe’en” we know today. Today, we still begin our celebration on the evening before – what appears on our calendars as October 31.
Halloween Schmalloween » Evangel | A First Things Blog

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