Should a Christian participate in a Color Run?

Lately I’ve been seeing friends, Christians and non-Christians alike, participating in this event’s called “Color Runs” which are usually 5k runs, were people wear white and stop by color stations to throw colored powder on themselves, their friends and in the air. The past two springs, more and more pictures on Facebook of smiling people covered in blues, purples, yellows, reds and other colors with little spots of their white tee-shirts peeking out from behind, keep showing up in my timeline.

Honestly, It looks like a lot of fun (a little precarious for anyone with dust allergies or asthma) and just imagine an adult food fight, replacing the food with colored powders and celebrating -as the press release I ran across was reading says, “a feel-good, happy, colorful event. It is a living, moving work of art.”

Which browsing over the press release is fine at first read.

Digging a little further into the release I caught this wording, and it got me thinking and wanting to do a little more investigation on the philosophy behind the event, “It was clear from the beginning that The Color Run has some hidden magic.”

“Hidden Magic” is an interesting choice of words and anytime I hear the word magic in relation to an event or celebration, it makes me start to wonder.

So, being the curious internet detective- I started googling and bing-ing away and ran into some interesting information about a color celebration that seems very similar to the color runs that are sweeping the nation.

It seems there is in the Hindu religion there is an event called the Holi festival, each year in India, where colors are thrown into the air.

It’s a magical festival, celebrating the destruction of Hiranyakashipu, a king of demons ruling demon, is destroyed by his son, Prahlada, was a devotee of Lord Vishnu. According to Wikipedia, “the festival is celebrated for 16 days (until Rangpanchmi) in commemoration of the divine love of Radha for Krishna. The festivities officially usher in spring, the celebrated season of love.”

A few different areas of India have slightly different perspectives on the magical and mythological aspect of the celebration, but it does have common themes throughout all parts of the country.

According to regarding the Holi Festival, “People spend the day smearing colored powder all over each other’s faces, throwing colored water at each other, having parties, and dancing under water sprinklers.” Which looks strikingly similar to some of the pictures I’ve seen- that I’ve mentioned were on my friends facebook pages.

It’s interesting to note that the same months the Holi Festival happen are also the same months the color runs across the US are booked where thousands of runners participate in the festivities.

Is a color run a bad thing in itself? Maybe not, but we as Christians are warned to use our discernment and not fall to the wiles and tricks of the devil who tries to infiltrate our lives and minds though seemingly innocuous ways.

What a great way to indoctrinate the people of the US to a festival that celebrates a demon killing its demon king father and being blessed by a god. And I use the term god with a lowercase G, because it is a “god” of this world.

Here is how the devil works. Satan steals love, or tries to steal love from people and his wicked plans are at work all around us. The pathetic thing about Lucifer in his jealousy for God, where he’s so desperate for adoration he tries to trick us into worshiping and celebrating him, without us even knowing it. Trickery…and speaking of that word, trickery is also mentioned in this Holi festival, since it also celebrates the silliness and trickery of a prank of Krishna against Radha- by placing color on him.

If you look at photographs on the internet of the color runs and also photos of the Holi festival, it will be hard to tell the difference between the two events. People dressed in white, a rainbow of colors thrown into the air, running, playing… so on.

In Matthew 7:15 the lord warns us to watch out for false prophets in the coming age “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves…” And Jesus states in another part of the New Testament regarding Satan, “for he is a liar and the father of lies.” The bible also talks about idolatry and worshiping false gods.

Satan is the king of Diversion and makes the wrong things seem attractive, and he’s also the master of deception and lies.

The thing that can trap Christians into celebrating what seems to be a fun, innocent time of throwing colors into the air, is the fact you do not know you are deceived until you awake from your deception. Usually, a deceived person will not even check to see if they are deceived, they start accepting the deception.

Again, I will point out I don’t know the true intention and motivation behind the runs nationwide but I do know, this run celebrates many of the same themes as does the Hindu festival, it is right around the same exact time of year/season and uses a lot of the same colorful imagery.

I will leave it up to you and Jesus and your own discernment whether or not you want to participate in events such as this. I’d suggest studying the festival in India more and looking into who is hosting the color event you’re thinking about attending, what their religious affiliations are and what charities they’re involved in.

I’m doing my spiritual duty as a fellow brother-in-Christ to suggest that as a Christian you take this as a word of caution, pray and think about attending these events.

Personally, looking at pictures of both events, something is disturbing to my spirit, so for those of you who invited me to come walking/running with you this past month, don’t worry about inviting me in the future- I’ll pass on attending, and not just for the asthmatic reasons.

God Bless and let prayer and discernment guide your way.

~Rev. Dino

**Please help us continue this project by donating as we run on very limited funds to keep it going. God bless and thank you.


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  • Karen Kelley

    Thank-you for the research. This old world is fraught with land mines of this nature. In fact I had just posted an illustration on why Christians should ‘care’ about the origins of celebrations & traditions. I’ll share it here. “Why the fuss?

    “Maybe you feel that the origins of holidays have little to do with how they are celebrated today. Do origins really matter? Yes! To illustrate: Suppose you saw a piece of candy lying in the gutter. Would you pick up that candy and eat it? Of course not! That candy is unclean. Like that candy, holidays may seem sweet, but they have been picked up from unclean places. To take a stand for true worship, we need to have a viewpoint like that of the prophet Isaiah, who told true worshipers: “Touch nothing unclean.”—Isaiah 52:11.” (Bible Teach Chapt 14.; pp 154-163)

    One excellent resource for those who know that God wants to be worshiped both in spirit and truth is A very unique Bible education website that provides viewing in over 500 different languages. Take care,

  • Riley

    This is insane. As a Christian, I completely agree that we need to be aware of and stay away from situations in which we can be deceived into sin. However claiming that participating in a color run will lead us astray from God is nonsense. Just because it is similar to a Hindu practice does not mean it is a sinful trap. That would be the same as warning Christians from meditating, for that is a Buddhist tradition. Or saying that participating in a fast similar to Ramadan for diet or Christian prayer related reasons would in fact deceive us because it is part of the Islam religion. God gave each of us judgement, wisdom, and His word to discern what is right and wrong, so that common acts such as fasting, meditating, and even color runs won’t easily weaken our Christian faith. Yes, I totally agree with you, that before participating in an event people should look into where the money is going to ensure it is something that matches our beliefs. If it weren’t for your asthma, which I am sorry to hear about, I would reconsider your decision to not attend color runs.

    • Dino

      Riley, no one claimed it WILL lead you astray, it says- use you’re own gut feeling, God’s discernment given though prayer and do some research to know what you’re participating in. The argument for meditation is actually biblically incorrect on your part.
      Christians never should attempt to meditate in the way of Buddhism. We are not to “clear” our minds and try to transcend to become nothingness, or connect with Om….when the term “meditation” is used in Christianity- its means to pray to God or focus on Christ’s word and the words of the Disciples in connection with and in communion though praise to God.

      Christians shouldn’t participate in Ramadan, as Islam is not a Christian based religion and rejects some of the main components of Christianity- the Virgin birth, and Christ being the Last Prophet until His return, that he rose from the grave and that He was God’s son. But again…. you’re not biblically correct in calling this article crazy and using the examples you’ve given.
      Christians are called to fast in the bible… but not as the Muslims do. Muslims are very public about it… God, directs Christians to be very private about it.

      6:16-18 “And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for
      they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others.
      Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast,
      anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen
      by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees
      in secret will reward you.”

      And we are to fast in prayer…

      12:15-17 “And the Lord afflicted the child that Uriah’s wife bore to
      David, and he became sick. David therefore sought God on behalf of the
      child. And David fasted and went in and lay all night on the ground.
      And the elders of his house stood beside him, to raise him from the
      ground, but he would not, nor did he eat food with them.”

      Such as the above mentioned things for a Christian to do- Ramadan fasting and meditating like a Buddist, can open ones self up to influence by “unfamiliar spirits” The Bible tells us, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary
      the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
      Resist him, steadfast in the faith…”

      2 Corinthians 2:11, “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.”

      In the summery of the article… it even says
      “I will leave it up to you and Jesus and your own discernment whether or not you want to participate in events such as this. I’d suggest studying the festival in India more and looking into who is hosting the color event you’re thinking about attending, what their religious affiliations are and what charities they’re involved in. I’m doing my spiritual duty as a fellow brother-in-Christ to suggest that as a Christian you take this as a word of caution, pray and think about attending these events.”

  • Steven Luther Gilkey

    I agree with you! I have a website, http://www.BiblicalPOV.Com; and I was going through the advertisements that were being loaded onto my pages. I noticed one for “Color Fun Fest 5k”; and from the pic in the ad, I realized immediately it was like this heathen ceremony.

    I’ve seen enough of this stuff on TV lately. Toyota ads of paint being thrown at a car, and another with a car full of Muppets shooting colors out of the roof of their vehicle. And Walmart ads with people throwing water balloons with some sort of colored liquids. Walmart has actually gone to the trouble of making a 59 second “how to” video and posting it on YouTube (I won’t include the link here for search engine reasons; but a search about making paint balloons and Walmart should find it, if you want to see it).

    And, I realize that America has already gone SO far into paganism. However, I didn’t realize that this particular practice had already become so “mainstream”. I suppose it was inevitable, as more and more people from the lands that have long been involved in these rituals move to the U.S. It is the nature of all people to continue their habits wherever they go.

    As for comments by Riley, it saddens me, but I must strongly disagree. I do agree that God strengthens those of us that are Christians to resist the ways of the devil. Nevertheless, we are commanded: “Thou shalt not tempt the LORD your God (Yahweh, your Elohim)”, Deuteronomy 6:16; Matthew 4:7; and Luke 4:12. God does provide protection, but ONLY if we do OUR part.

    “Therefore, let him who stands take heed, lest he fall.”–1 Corinthians 10:12

    For Riley to say of your article “this is insane” is so very wrong. The word “insane” seems somewhere in the area of “fool” and “idiot”. I certainly hope it was not truly meant that way, since to call a fellow Christian something like puts the name-caller in danger of Hell fire ( ).

    I should also say, that we shouldn’t be thinking only about how we personally might be harmed by these rituals. Even if it were perfectly safe for those of us who are already Christians to be surrounded by these pagan ceremonies, we still need to ask, especially, “what about the children?” How many little minds will grow up around these ceremonies, and come to believe that the ceremonies (as well as, know doubt, as the baggage of the pagan history) are absolutely fine–in fact, a tremendous amount of fun?!! People make fun of “thin-end-of-the-wedge”, “foot-in-the-door”, “slippery-slope” theories; but the reality is, that there is a great deal of truth in them.

    Over and over again, we find passages like these in the Bible (from the ESV version):

    my angel goes before you and brings you to the Amorites and the
    Hittites and the Perizzites and the Canaanites, the Hivites and the
    Jebusites, and I blot them out,
    shall not bow down to their gods nor serve them, nor do as they do, but
    you shall utterly overthrow them and break their pillars in pieces. …

    …32You shall make no covenant with them and their gods.
    shall not dwell in your land, lest they make you sin against me; for if
    you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you.”

    We are warned not to even have such people living with us, “…lest they make (cause) [us to] sin against [God]” (verse 33). I’m not sure how much clearer God could be on this issue. Having pagans among us is BAD; and having them perform pagan rituals is BAD. This is not rocket science.

    Thank you for writing this article, Brother. Now I need to return to my BLOCKING of those horrid ads.

  • jeansandjacketrequired

    Colors are bad. I would only throw gray… But this is so evil.

  • C girl

    @ Riley I so agree with Dino! What Satan does is make you look at a situation where your spirituality can be harmed as innocent. Give that some thought. 2 Corinthians 6:14 asks, “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” By Biblical mandate you don’t mix the two!

  • Lebo Moumakwe

    Thank you Rev. Dino for this. The colour run has hit the shores of South Africa as well, at first I was keen to attend and lost interest within the first week without any particular reason, I was just not interested anymore. This morning I got a text from a friend who was asking me if I knew where the colour run came from so I decided to do a bit of digging and I am greatful I came across your article. This is confirmation that I should not bother. The run is schedule to take place tomorrow in Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape and Durban have already had their run. Thank God for your article.

  • KM

    I randomly came across this article while searching for something else. Anytime I see an article/blog post/etc. title akin to “Should Christians do [fill in the blank]”, or the like, it always piques my interest.

    To be clear, there is nothing wrong with Christians taking part in these runs. They are not celebrating Holi, and they are not worshipping a demon king’s rebellious son and associated Hindu gods. Color Runs are not Satan trying to “steal, kill, and destroy”. It’s people running and having fun.

    This is the absolute insane stuff that drives people away from the Gospel. To be very, very clear, the message contained herein is NOT the Gospel. It’s interesting to see so much from Christians (typically the Christian Right, Calvinists, etc.) that is completely un-Biblical, uneducated, and most certainly not the message of the Gospel, being peddled as such. Even more interesting is that these “Gospel messages” often seem to contain so very much talk about “Satan”, not the Resurrection of God.

    • charginglife

      Thanks KM for your message. We strongly disagree with you, as the post isn’t telling Christian’s what to do or what not to do, but it is strongly suggesting that they look into events and things they participate in, and pray before participating in any activity tied to a non- Abrahamic based religion. Islam included on the list, as most Jew’s and Christians do not consider Islam to be Abrahamic.

      First off… there is biblical backing for not participating in things like Color Runs because for the origins being that of the Holi Festival.

      KM… Like it or not, Satan is the current King of this World and Air until Jesus Christ arrives to take His throne, and The Devil, Satan, Lucifer- whatever you want to call him, is real and active trying to deceive Christians by innocently luring away slowly from their beliefs and faith. It seems you don’t understand the nature of Lucifer and his goals for the world. We all know and believe the he won’t win, as God has given us His word thought the inspired writings of the Bible.

      The devil seeks an “Open door” into a persons life- which can be in a variety of ways, knowingly and unknowingly- though participating in events that are sinful, occult or of idol worship. Which the Holi festival is… Its a idol worship of a DEMON. There are direct ties to Color Runs and the Holi Festival, we provided just a little of the research, but others have dug deeper in other articles, using this blog as a starting point.

      Anytime a believer participates in something that is questionable, there is a possibility that the believer is vulnerable to the enemy entering into his or her life.

      Ignoring that Satan and Spiritual warfare is real makes one just as guilty of not believing he is real, and that he tries to infect us on a daily basis to draw us from our faith.
      Not enough Churches or Ministries have the guts to discuss Satan, in fear of driving away lukewarm Christians who just want the modern “psychological” and “Feel Good” types of teaching. Satan might not have such a crushing stranglehold on this world right now if more people picked up the cross and battled for God, and stepped in the Gap for their friends and loved ones, on a daily basis.

      If you read further into Charging Life’s blogs, we have dozens of blogs discussing the Resurrection of Christ, and the origins of God, Humankind and Christianity in general.

      We will pray that the Holy Spirit opens your eyes to the truths of this matter, and that you will have supernatural understanding of God’s word on this subject.
      God Bless.

      Rev. K. Dino

      **Here are applicaple Bible verses to back our validity**

      Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before me.

      Deuteronomy 12:4 “Do not worship the Lord your God in the way the pagan people worship their gods”

      Deuteronomy 12:30-31 Take care that you be not ensnared to follow them, after they have been destroyed before you, and that you do not inquire about their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods?—that I also may do the same.’ You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way, for every abominable thing that the Lord hates they have done for their gods, for they even burn their sons and their daughters in the fire to their gods.
      “On that day of judgment,” says the Lord, “I will punish the leaders and princes of Judah and all those following pagan customs.Yes, I will punish those who participate in pagan worship ceremonies, and those who fill their masters’ houses with violence and deceit Zephaniah 1:8-9
      You have put pagan symbols on your doorposts and behind your doors. You have left me and climbed into bed with these detestable gods. You have committed yourselves to them. You love to look at their naked bodies Isaiah 57:8.

      This disaster came upon the people of Israel because they worshiped other gods. They sinned against the Lord their God, who had brought them safely out of Egypt and had rescued them from the power of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. 8 They had followed the practices of the pagan nations the Lord had driven from the land ahead of them, as well as the practices the kings of Israel had introduced. 2 kings 17

      Joshua 23:7 That you may not mix with these nations remaining among you or make mention of the names of their gods or swear by them or serve them or bow down to them, but you shall cling to the Lord your God just as you have done to this day.
      Deuteronomy 4:24 For the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.

      1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

      “What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything? Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s table and of the table of demons. Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than He?” 1 Corinthians 10:19-22

      1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour:

      “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king” 1 Samuel 15:23

      And here four verses that are pretty much straight to the point…

      Exodus 23:13 “Pay attention to all that I have said to you, and make no mention of the names of other gods, nor let it be heard on your lips.

      Deuteronomy 6:14 You shall not go after other gods, the gods of the peoples who are around you…

      “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices” 2 Corinthians 2:11

      1 Corinthians 10:20 But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that you should have fellowship with devils.

  • Cynthia S

    I agree that this festival is one to be concerned about following as a Christian. In what appears to be innocent fun by throwing this substance upon others and allowing it to be thrown on you Satans ‘anointing’ poweder. No different than anointing oil used by Christians. There is a power behind these elements depending upon who is behind them…Holy Spirit of God, or unholy spirit of Satan? This “Color Run” is actually invoking/summoning the spirits of darkness upon your lives. I can’t believe that Gods people are not willing to see this. God says “Choose life”…