What Is All Saints Day?

October 29, 2019
(The following article is adapted from christianity.com.)

All Saints Day is a Christian celebration in honor of all those who have gone to be with the Lord through history, and recognized by churches around the world. At Deermeadows, we honor in worship on this day all those among our faith community who have passed to eternity (the Kingdom of Heaven) during the past year. Many in the Deermeadows community find it to be a significant time of reflection and giving thanks for lives of faithfulness and influence.

This Christian observance comes from a conviction that there is a spiritual connection between those in heaven and on earth. The day relates to giving God significant gratitude for the lives and deaths of his saints - all those who call on the name of Jesus.

Perhaps, you were taught to think of saints as icons in the Catholic church. But the Bible teaches something different for those of us in the Protestan traditions. Who is a saint? You are. That is if you’re a follower of Jesus. God calls a "saint" anyone who trusts in Christ alone for salvation. See Acts 9:13; 26:10; Romans 8:27; and I Corinthians 1:2. Sainthood isn't given by a group of religious leaders. It's granted by God Himself to any common, salt-of-the-earth person who simply trusts Christ. 

Who are your favorite heroes in Christian history, or even in your personal life? Can you think of any whose example has inspired you? Why not use this Sunday, November 3, to think of and give thanks for as many Christians from the past and in your life as you can remember, especially if their lives and teaching contributed something to yours.

There’s a hymn that’s traditionally sung around this day, "For All the Saints." It encourages believers to look back through the years of Christian history and think of the millions now enjoying rest and salvation in the presence of God. It’s also meant to provide encouragement to believers here and now to press on, looking forward to the glorious day. Andy McCrimmon will play it this Sunday morning as the prelude. Grab a Baptist Hymnal from the pew rack in worship, and examine the deep lyrics (Hymn 355).

Alex Crain is editor of Christianity.com. He serves as pastor of worship ministries at Harvest Christian Fellowship in the Richmond, VA area. Additional contributions by Mark Groves.