Do haunted houses and Christianity mix? We know the Bible speaks of angels and spirits, charmers and wizards, and of those who seek out the dead. Now I do not aim to set minds onto the path of foolishness (God warns us to stay clear of the agents of darkness); but I would ask the question: do these principals in high places include the concept of haunted houses?
To probe for an answer, let us look into the Old Testament where the Christian Bible records a law relating homes that are plagued with leprosy. It is presented in this curious manner:
"And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, When ye be come into the land of Canaan, which I give to you for a possession, and I put the plague of leprosy in a house of the land of your possession; And he that owneth the house shall come and tell the priest, saying, It seemeth to me there is as it were a plague in the house: Then the priest shall command that they empty the house, before the priest go into it to see the plague , that all that is in the house be not made unclean: and after the priest will go in to see the house: And he shall look on the plague, and, behold, if the plague be in the walls of the house with hollow strakes , greenish or reddish, which in sight are lower than the wall; Then the priest shall go out of the house to the door of the house, and shut up the house seven days: "(Leviticus 14: 33-38).
Now, we ask ourselves: Why would the God of creation place a plague of leprosy in a house? Furthermore, we wonder at the nature of this plague (hollow strakes of greenish or reddish colors). We also ponder the method of cleaning. But most of all, as Christians, we must ponder the purpose to these scripts.
So we read again, backing up into the precedent versa, scanning for context. We also read beyond the current text, looking there so as ensuring that we understand the perspective of the scripture. [If you have not already done so. Read now the whole of Leviticus 14].
In the end, we return to the text at hand and that which follows it to the end of the chapter. Our focus is on the exact measure and meaning of each word. In so doing, we notice the following points:
1. Leprosy is a symbol of spiritual uncleanness.
2. God establishes a precise method for dealing with uncleanness.
3. We understand, through implications, the relationship between leprosy and sin and the necessary sacrifice for cleaning.
4. [I will not dip deeper into this symbolism between leprosy and sin, repentance, and salvation through the blood of Jesus Christ. If you are a Christian, you know these relationships. If you are not a Christian, you need to seek understanding. For this article, I continue with the issue of Bible attention to haunted houses].
5. The land is that which once belonged to the Canaanites: descendants of Ham, youngest son of Noah, long ago cursed to be the servants of servants; practitioners of impure rites and public prostitution; followers of Baal-Peor and Ashtaroth (gods so-called); and worshipers of idolatry, their gods made of stone that can not speak and wood that can not hear.
6. The land is now given over to Israel: God's chosen people; a blessed nation though often spiritually weak, many times failing in their service but ever cared for, protected, and sanctified by God God.
7. The text implies that the house was already standing at the time of Israeliite possession. Furthermore, the house is constructed of stone.
8. The plague is noticeable to onlookers, including, and foremost to those who live in the infected house. Each man knows what lies within.
9. The Strakes are hollow, this English word being taken from the Hebrew word for depression. In our mind then, we see an image of long, multi-colored tubes, glass-like emissions of hardened slime that have carved grooves into the stone of the walls. The indication is that this has occurred over a period of time.
10. Outward signs of the plague are a symbol of a defect problem.
11. The priest must perform the cleansing. All who are saved are a royal priesthood. Clean your own house.
12. The house must be emptied: for that which is clean to remain so, it must avoid contact with the unclean.
13. The plague is examined for depth and penetration, whether it is on the walls or whether it is in the walls. Filth is filth, but that which Touches the outside can be easily recognized and cleaned; that which penetrates into the inside endures and grows.
14. The house is left alone for seven days to determine the spread of the leprosy. Although all leprosy is a plague, not all plagues are contaminate the whole body.
15. Once the full measure of the plague is determined, all that is infected must be ripped out and disposed of in a safe manner. Cut out the core and all that surrounds it. To hold even one portion of one part of one measure of known vileness is to hold to the full contamination.
16. Scrape, scour, and dispose of any and all remnants of the plague. Leave no stone unturned, no corner untouched.
17. Using clean, new stones, rebuild the walls. Take care from where the stones have been stored, and examine each one that it too is clean.
18. Apply fresh plaster and mortar. This is no temporary patch job.
19. Keep watch that the plague does not return, but if it should comeback, then tear down all that is old: stone, timber, and mortar. Wash the filthy garments. Cleanse all who have touched the unclean items. Understand that the first cleaning was not through, that something was left behind, and that something was held back, retained within the walls, clung too in disregard of the danger of holding that which is a festering mental and spiritual sickness.
20. If the leprosy is really gone, then wash and cleanse the house with living blood that it may remain forever clean. True cleansing is not dependent upon the laborer, but rather upon the cleansing blood of the lamb.
Contemporary history speaks stories of how the Canaanites, in knowing and fearing the God of Israel, would hide stone and wood idols within the walls of their homes. I do not know the facts of this. Having once lived in a literal haunted house, I do know the truth of their physical existence. Having come to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, I also know the truth of spiritual uncleanness.
These verses speak on multiple levels of understanding and wisdom. Although comments embedded within this text, I have touched upon various meanings. The scripture speaks of corporeal houses and of corporeal means of cleaning. Of the inner house that exists in every person, it is not so blunt. How they relate, I leave up to you.
Know this: God put the plague of leprosy in the house. He did not cause the plague, but rather he disclosed its presence:
"For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. upon the housetops, "(Luke 12: 2-3).