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    “See to it no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:8).

    « God is NOT Like the Ocean (Part 1 of 2) | Elitism »

    Why the Occult is So Dangerous

    Many Christian websites, books, and other media are quick to point out the occult is dangerous and sinful. They are not wrong, but in their zeal very few actually explain why. This article seeks to answer (to the best of my ability, anyway) "why".


    Those who practice the occult (in Christian or Jewish circles, known as “mysticism”), firmly believe they are at least mostly in control of the spirits, powers, and “gifts” they use. But use them long or often enough, and suddenly the spirits seem to turn mean or angry, powers become pitfalls, and “gifts” turn into curses.


    The Lord once led me to (and not too long after led me away from) a particular occult forum, where all people could share their supernatural experiences. All your posts had to go through the only moderator (the website’s creator) who had the power to make sure they never saw the light of day, if they didn’t agree with what you wrote (God later led me to actually have a brief conversation via email with this person).


    I shared some of my supernatural experiences God has seen fit to give me during my walk with Him (mostly dreams, one vision, “words of knowledge”, etc.) in order to become a member,

    I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.” (1 Corinthians 9:22; see also 9:19-23, http://biblicalmissiology.org/2010/07/08/jew-to-jews-greek-to-greeks-part-i/ and http://biblicalmissiology.org/2010/07/20/jews-to-the-jews-greek-to-the-greeks-part-ii/)  


    I didn’t mince words or try to fit in (I wrote there, same as on this blog), and God miraculously led the moderator to allow my posts. Afterwards, I commented on other people’s posts about the only real power coming from God, how they were deceived, and how what they were doing was really a sin before God (you would be surprised how many people recognized the inherent power in Jesus’ name, and would use it for their own purposes, but never stopped to consider just why it was so powerful. The Bible actually warns against doing this in Acts 19:13-20.).


    A TON of prayer went forth before I ever entered that site, and a ton of prayer followed (not just from me, but a small team of Christians were praying for me also) every time I posted something. And it was a good thing they were praying because Satan didn’t want me there.


    I began hearing voices whispering my name. One time an incredible weight pressed down on my body so I couldn’t type or even stand or sit. I had to lie down, and this weight was so oppressive it was hard to keep my eyes open or even breathe. I couldn’t even think except to manage the words, “God…help!” and just as suddenly the weight let go and passed on.


    Several times the computer would randomly shut down before I had saved anything or I was inexplicably unable to post something (or maybe they were simple computer glitches, but the timing sure seemed “funny”). All this to say, don’t copy my actions without explicit direction from God, and much prayer on your part and prayer covering.


    "You never had control! That's the illusion!” (Ellie to Hammond, "Jurasic Park" film)

    After a short time of reading, it was easy to see most of the other people on that site fell into two main groups. The first larger and made up of people wanting to know more about their particular “gift”, how to grow in it, how to gain more power (in order to simply help others), and seeking advice from old-timers.


    The second group was made up of those who suddenly found themselves (sometimes after only a few months, more often after many years) with angry spirits. The same spirit(s) who had guided a person in their “gifting” and who had never been unpleasant, would find said spirit inexplicably changed one day into a mean, angry, demanding, threatening character.


    These people were confused, lost, and hurt, not understanding these beings are what the Bible calls “demons”. They love to lure people in (“Come into my parlor said the spider to the fly”*), and their whole purpose in being is to destroy people in one way or another.


    When a person dabbles or outright practices the occult (or religious mysticism), they are dealing with demons. The voices they hear, the things they see, the powers they experience, are designed to be various and entertaining/entrancing enough to keep a person occupied their entire life. An example from “Sayings of the Buddha”** on the “Fruits of the Ascetic Life” shows how this might happen.


    The Buddha outlines all the neat-sounding things he has experienced from asceticism and meditation (in order); feelings of mental clarity, feelings of joy/happiness, feelings of purity, the development of a mental/spiritual avatar, becoming invisible, walking through walls, traveling through the air (out of body experiences) or ocean or outer space,  “godlike hearing (long distances and “hearing” the “divine”), a prophetic-like understanding of people (psychic), “remembering” previous lives (of which there can be a great many), having “godlike” vision (seeing people born and die, and having judgment passed on them), and finally the “understanding” and surpassing of suffering, sin, and ignorance (basically, attainment of godhood) (pp 28-35).


    The occult is so dangerous because it is subtle, seductive, and appeals to our pride (see my article, “Elitism”). You are not ultimately in control. The spirits only obey your commands, for now. Just like a spider, the occult will trick you, lure you, trap you, and then destroy you.


    If you are a Christian remember when it comes to temptation (especially strong temptation),

    Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7).


    If you have already participated in occult (or mystical) practices, the same rule applies only you must also take a hint from Acts 19:13-20 and “burn your scrolls” so to speak. In order to be free, you must submit yourself to God, repent, and then clean house.


    * The Spider and the Fly
    Mary Howitt (1829)

    Will you walk into my parlour?" said the Spider to the Fly, 
    'Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy; 
    The way into my parlour is up a winding stair, 
    And I've a many curious things to shew when you are there." 
    Oh no, no," said the little Fly, "to ask me is in vain, 
    For who goes up your winding stair can ne'er come down again." 

    "I'm sure you must be weary, dear, with soaring up so high; 
    Will you rest upon my little bed?" said the Spider to the Fly. 
    "There are pretty curtains drawn around; the sheets are fine and thin, 
    And if you like to rest awhile, I'll snugly tuck you in!" 
    Oh no, no," said the little Fly, "for I've often heard it said, 
    They never, never wake again, who sleep upon your bed!" 

    Said the cunning Spider to the Fly, " Dear friend what can I do, 
    To prove the warm affection I 've always felt for you? 
    I have within my pantry, good store of all that's nice; 
    I'm sure you're very welcome -- will you please to take a slice?" 
    "Oh no, no," said the little Fly, "kind Sir, that cannot be, 
    I've heard what's in your pantry, and I do not wish to see!" 

    "Sweet creature!" said the Spider, "you're witty and you're wise, 
    How handsome are your gauzy wings, how brilliant are your eyes! 
    I've a little looking-glass upon my parlour shelf, 
    If you'll step in one moment, dear, you shall behold yourself." 
    "I thank you, gentle sir," she said, "for what you 're pleased to say, 
    And bidding you good morning now, I'll call another day." 

    The Spider turned him round about, and went into his den, 
    For well he knew the silly Fly would soon come back again: 
    So he wove a subtle web, in a little corner sly, 
    And set his table ready, to dine upon the Fly. 
    Then he came out to his door again, and merrily did sing, 
    "Come hither, hither, pretty Fly, with the pearl and silver wing; 
    Your robes are green and purple -- there's a crest upon your head; 
    Your eyes are like the diamond bright, but mine are dull as lead!" 

    Alas, alas! how very soon this silly little Fly, 
    Hearing his wily, flattering words, came slowly flitting by; 
    With buzzing wings she hung aloft, then near and nearer drew, 
    Thinking only of her brilliant eyes, and green and purple hue -- 
    Thinking only of her crested head -- poor foolish thing! At last, 
    Up jumped the cunning Spider, and fiercely held her fast. 
    He dragged her up his winding stair, into his dismal den, 
    Within his little parlour -- but she ne'er came out again! 

    And now dear little children, who may this story read, 
    To idle, silly flattering words, I pray you ne'er give heed: 
    Unto an evil counsellor, close heart and ear and eye, 
    And take a lesson from this tale, of the Spider and the Fly.

    (Taken from: http://www.love-poems.me.uk/howitt_the_spider_and_the_fly_funny.htm)


    ** “Sayings of the Buddha” (New Translation by Rupert Gethin from the Pali Nikayas), Oxford World Classics, 2008

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