What is the Occult.. Definition & Categories, Why The Rise in Popularity? Sources of Power
What Does The Bible Say? Definitions of terms used in Deuteronomy 18:9-14 and Leviticus 19:26-28,31
The New Age - a multi-cultural spiritual and consciousness raising movement that has its roots in the occult, is anything but new. Over the last several decades (unnoticed by all but a very few) New Age beliefs have gradually gathered momentum over the face of the earth. Blended with mind/body self-help, much of its teaching is now appealing to the mainstream consumer who is interested in becoming not only more spiritually aware, but healthier and more successful as well. However, it has a very dark side. It is fueled by unholy forces that oppose both God and man and shepherded by humans outside the church who have no comprehension of the dark forces they deal with and, of course, by an 'evil and adulterous generation' inside the church who so easily ignore the warnings from the God they profess to serve.
Are Yoga & Christianity Compatible?
For many in the West, yoga is simply a system of physical exercise, a means of strengthening the body, improving flexibility, and even healing or preventing a variety of bodily ailments. But if we inquire into the history and philosophy of yoga we discover that, much more than a system of physical exercise for health, Yoga is an ancient path to spiritual growth.
More To Yoga Than Meets The Eye
The most popular yoga offered in one's local Recreation Center is Hatha Yoga, so-called physical yoga involving numerous yoga techniques called asanas. These asanas appear to the uninitiated to be mere stretching exercises. The more fully initiated realize that yogic asanas are worship postures to Hindu deities. They also know that North Americans are not quite ready yet for the full truth about the religious identity of yoga. There is no Yoga without Hinduism.
Kundalini, conceptualized as a coiled up serpent, is a concentrated form of prana or life force, lying dormant in our bodies. The ‘awakening’ of the Kundalini brings about an expanded states of consciousness and can be achieved through three main practices, the most effective of which are meditation and yogic postures such as those taught in Hatha Yoga or a guru or spiritual teacher conferring the spiritual "power" or awakening, often by means of a touch to the forehead. If that isn’t disturbing enough, it is worse to compare the experiences and behaviour of the people at Toronto, Brownsville and Lakeland with disciples of Hindu gurus who have had this spiritual "power" or Kundalini awakening conferred on them. The requirements for receiving are the same, The methods of transmissions are the same and the physical manifestations are the same. How then can these ’revivals’ be Christians.
As you know, most people see Halloween as nothing more than a harmless festival that allows kids to collect candy. Yet Halloween is much more than a harvest festival. Its origins are deeply rooted in the occult, and the various practitioners of the black arts identify Halloween as a significant event in the pagan calendar.
"Imaging" and "Visualization" are increasingly appearing as Christian meditation, "mind-stretchers," or a consciousness-awakening experience in Christian workshops, and you'd better believe that visualization as a cultivated exercise comes with all sorts of metaphysical and spiritual baggage in tow. Frankly, some of these bags desperately need to be opened up before being admitted into Christian territory.
Modern-day psychics or mediums, who transmit information from highly evolved spirit non-physical entities, are called channelers. In other words, they become the 'channel' through which the spirit world communicates with ours, often using the medium's vocal cords to do so. Other forms of channeling include automatic writing, narrated visions, and inner voice dictation all of which are claimed to greatly benefit individuals and mankind as a whole. The problem is channeled spirits (usually considered ‘good’) claim that what the Bible teaches is false - Important Christian doctrines are usually contradicted or denied. So who are they?
Astrology 1 Astrology 2
Estimates indicate that anywhere from ten to thirty percent of those claiming to be "born again" Christians entertain some belief that astrology is true, yet astrology is more than the horoscope columns in the newspapers and in magazines and an innocent pastime. It is an occult practice. If spiritistic power is the real force behind legitimate astrological disclosures, then the acceptance of astrology is opening the door to the spirit world.
The martial arts are a topic of much confusion and misunderstanding today, especially within the evangelical community. Views range from those who claim the Asian martial arts are wholly incompatible with Christianity to those who say the two naturally blend. Is the "Dragon" (Satan) finding a new entrance into our society and even the church through the popularity of the martial arts? Before arriving at a balanced conclusion on the matter, the vast differences separating the various arts must be considered. At the very least, a fundamental understanding of their historical roots, traditions, philosophies, and goals is necessary.
As the popularity of Reiki grows, many Christians are becoming interested in this healing art and have begun to practice it. They believe that because Reiki is a laying on hands healing technique similar to what Jesus practiced. However Reiki practitioners tell a very different story.. The word Reiki is composed of two Japanese words.. Rei can be defined as the Higher Intelligence that guides the creation and functioning of the universe. Rei is also called God and has many other names depending on the culture that has named it.
Goddess Worship [Section]
Reverence for the goddess is becoming prevalent in our day. The goddess is embraced by witchcraft, radical feminism, the occult, and the liberal church. Christians must be aware that when the moon is full, writers, teachers, nurses, computer programmers, artists, lawyers, poets, plumbers, and auto mechanics—women and men from varied backgrounds—gather on hilltops, beaches, in open fields, and in ordinary houses to invoke the mother goddess and her consort, the “Horned One,” by their varied names... Ultimately though, it doesn’t really matter if "she" is called Sophia, Isis, Diana, Virtus, Cybele, Rhea, or Mother Mary, the concept is always the same–the lifting up of a pagan goddess as a replacement for the true God.
The Spirits Behind Pagan Gods and Goddesses
The Bible is very clear that the idols the first century Gentiles sacrificed to were demons (daimonia) not God i.e. the statue or image represented a living creature. Thus it is fair to conclude that deities such as Zeus, Amun-Ra, Demeter and Isis, were simply the classical names attributed to specific spirits. In other words, Apollo was a real personality as was Osiris ruler of the dead. In today’s world, the Hindu gods Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver, and Shiva the destroyer and the eight-armed demonic looking goddess Kali (depicted as holding a skull in one of her hands) are not just man made images but are the face of something far more sinister. It is no surprise therefore that the Bible strongly prohibits having anything to do with idols and that idolatry is singled out in the Bible as the most abominable of sins that brings dire consequences.
Apparitions of The Virgin Mary
The Bible warns that we will see counterfeit miracles, strange sights in the heavens, false prophets, so much so that "even the very elect might be deceived." When one analyzes many of the alleged miracles that accompany Marian apparitions, they seem to be of a different kind than those found in Scripture. Biblical miracles had a strong practical aspect. Many of the miracles associated with Marian apparitions seem dramatic and sensational.. the kind of miracles that Jesus consistently refused to perform (Matt. 12:38-39). There is little doubt that these are "miracles," but they are performed by the prince of darkness.
The Influence of Eastern Mysticism
Eastern mysticism has penetrated every area of Western society and much of the church. How did this transformation overtake a "Christian" America?
What Eastern Gurus Say About Occult Practices
In short those who practice the occultism of the East also warn of its dangers. This is why those who seek the so-called "wisdom from the East" frequently get more than they bargained for.
The Teachings of the Spirits
Many millions of people today believe that these spirits offer teachings that are consistent with the Bible and Christian faith. However a comparison of the spirits’ views from channeled literature with Bible teaching tells us that they are diametrically opposed. The religious teachings of the spirits are exactly what one might expect from demons.
Transcendental Meditation or TM
The promoters of Transcendental Meditation or TM present it as a "scientific" practice based on biological and psychological laws. They repeatedly declare that it is a non religious activity in which men of all faiths may participate with great benefit. However, an in-depth study of Transcendental Meditation reveals that not all of its story appears on the surface.
The Ascended Masters..Rulers of the Darkness of this Age?
"Ascended Masters" are alleged to work from an 'etheric retreat' centred on the Gobi Desert, called 'Shambhala' (Shamballa) or a hidden location in Tibet called 'Shigatse'. A number of lesser Masters are said to inhabit the earth in physical bodies, having taken over strategically placed bodies in order to carry out their tasks in the world. One of the channeled classics in occult literature, gives further evidence of the true nature of this Hierarchy: 'After the great descent of the spiritual Existences [the Masters] to the earth, the work they planned to do was systematized. Compare this with the verse in the Bible....
In 1959, Benjamin Creme was contacted by one of the Masters of Wisdom, (a group of perfected individuals supposedly the custodians of the Divine Plan for this planet) . He was told, among other things, that Maitreya, the World Teacher, the Master of all the Masters, would return in about 20 years and that he (Creme) would have a role to play in the event if he chose to accept it.
The spiritism that has been making its way into the American mainstream for the past 25 years has simply been repackaged in a more benevolent light. Put another way, the recent angel craze is simply occultism with a divine twist marketed under new management, so to speak.
Evaluating Today's Angel Craze
There was a time when angels were mainly relegated to Christmas cards. But not anymore. Angels have infiltrated the popular culture - big time. Indeed, interest in angels is virtually soaring across the religious spectrum in North America - from mainline Christians to New Agers who seek comfort from these heavenly helpers in a troubled and often chaotic world.
Evidence for the Devil
"One of the reasons why confusion is spreading in the world is that we are afraid to face its real causes. We believe in a thousand evils, fear a thousand dangers, but have ceased to believe in evil and to fear the true dangers. Thus, we can suggest eight lines of reasoning to infer the possibility of a real devil and/or the reality of spiritual evil.
Is Lucifer Another Name For Satan?
One of the most common misconceptions among Bible believers is that Lucifer is another name for Satan, based on a single occurrence of the word … the King James translation of Isaiah 14:12
What Are Demons
Demons have more power and influence than most people may realize. But the question remains .. what are they?
Wicca... the name for a contemporary pagan revival of witchcraft is growing very fast in America. Some witches do not call themselves witches, but refer to themselves as Wiccans, white witches, or pagans. Wicca is supposedly an old English term for witch and is used by some as an alternate name for witch. Article includes their fundamental doctrines and a Biblical critique of those doctrines.
Is Earth Our Mother?
A spiritual renaissance is sweeping through churches and seminaries, The the ancient religion of the Earth Mother is bringing pagan empowerment rituals and texts such as Mother Earth Spirituality. This unholy renewal lures children as well as adults, atheists as well as Christians. No part of our culture is immune. Look at the signs of change in our schools and media.
Contemporary society is experiencing a resurgence of interest in earth- and nature-centered spirituality. So what is modern Paganism?
Shamanism, once associated with the North American Indian, or medicine man, is gaining popularity in the West in the framework of the present pagan revival.
The World Of Animism
The animistic worldview contains both the observed or physical world and the unseen or spirit world. There is no sharp distinction between the two realities; Animism (or folk religion) is a religion that sees a spirit or spiritual force behind every event, and many objects of the physical world carry some spiritual significance. In most parts of the world, animism blends in with formal religions. In many parts of the world, Christianity has not displaced the local folk religion but coexists beside it in an uneasy tension.
Today’s religious syncretism not only accepts reincarnation as one of its basic doctrines but also tries to prove that it can be found in the Bible and in the history of the Church.
in America is a highly influential organization claiming some four million members. Masonic leaders argue the lodge is not a religion but merely a fraternal body that seeks to better society The relationship of Masonry to Christian faith has been controversial for at least 200 years, and over that period the different sides have attempted to defend their positions to the best of their abilities with a considerable amount of rhetoric on both sides.. Admittedly this is a highly charged, complicated issue.
A large part of the available UFO literature deals with subjects like mental telepathy, automatic writing and invisible entities poltergeist manifestations and possession. Many UFO reports recount alleged incidents that are strikingly similar to demonic possession and psychic phenomena.
NDE (Near Death Experiences)
Although many NDEers identify the being of light they see as Jesus Christ, this being never really tells people who he is. The NDEer assumes from the message and the radiant glow that he is Jesus. This being usually preaches a message of unconditional love and universal acceptance of all people — a message that sounds wonderful, but actually is quite deceptive because it denies any divine judgment or responsibility for sin. In fact, this message smacks of New Age ideas.
Millions of Americans are enamored with and even directly influenced by the poltergeist phenomenon. In this article we will introduce the subject, evaluate current theories, note various characteristics and abilities of the poltergeist and document the occult nature of this phenomenon, noting various occult interpretations. We will also indicate relevant consequences of poltergeist phenomena, and investigation and also document their evil nature.
Being a medium or spiritist or consulting the dead are referred to as "detestable ways." in the Bible... Why? Perhaps because it is not possible to communicate with the dead and the source of information is from the spirit world. Not deceased human beings, but demonic spirits.
Was perhaps the most dangerous of the modern day psychics... simply because he taught Sunday school claiming to be a Christian... But was he?
If you are one of the many modern Christians who stands in awe of what is commonly seen as the deep 'spirituality' and connection with the Divine that modern mystics like Thomas Keating, Henri Nouwen, Thomas Merton claim to have, chances are you have not taken the time to find out what is behind these practices and the people that teach it. 'Christian' centering prayer as taught and practiced in so much of the church today was learned from Eastern and Occult meditation practitioners. Any differences are superficial at best.
Each branch of alternative medicine needs to be assessed individually to determine its effectiveness, scientific basis, mode of action, safety, underlying worldview and links with the occult. For example acupuncture has its roots in Taoism, yoga in Hinduism and therapeutic touch in New Age ideology. This alone should make us suspicious. See overview plus detailed articles on Acupuncture, Homeopathy, Hypnotism, Yoga & more.
What The Bible Says
'You shall not eat anything with the blood, nor practice divination or soothsaying. (Leviticus 19:26 NASB)
'Do not turn to mediums or spiritists; do not seek them out to be defiled by them. I am the Lord your God. (Leviticus 19:31 NASB)
"When you enter the land which the Lord your God gives you, you shall not learn to imitate the detestable things of those nations. "There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. "For whoever does these things is detestable to the Lord; and because of these detestable things the Lord your God will drive them out before you. "You shall be blameless before the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 18:9-13 NASB)
'As for the person who turns to mediums and to spiritists, to play the harlot after them, I will also set My face against that person and will cut him off from among his people. (Leviticus 20:6 NASB)
So Saul died for his trespass which he committed against the Lord, because of the word of the Lord which he did not keep; and also because he asked counsel of a medium, making inquiry of it, (1 Chronicles 10:13 NASB)
"You are wearied with your many counsels; Let now the astrologers, Those who prophesy by the stars, Those who predict by the new moons, Stand up and save you from what will come upon you. "Behold, they have become like stubble, Fire burns them; They cannot deliver themselves from the power of the flame; There will be no coal to warm by Nor a fire to sit before! (Isaiah 47:13-14 NASB)
Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying. (Revelation 22:15 NASB)
"But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death." (Revelation 21:8 NASB)