Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Occult...Are You Participating?

In recent years, I've noticed an affinity for the occult in our society. Whether it's movies that promote demonic or evil spiritual occurrences or TV shows where mediums are involved, our culture seems to have allowed the occult to permeate our lives without many people knowing it. The problem with our society's acceptance of things like this is that it goes against the teachings of the Bible.

When we mention the occult certain images come to mind. It could be something demonic or even something like voodoo. We don't generally think about things that take place in our daily life as being a practice of the occult. So how do we know if we are unknowingly practicing something that would be identified with the occult? The Billy Graham Training Center Bible gives an extensive, but incomplete, list of things considered to be of the occult.

  • "There is a wide range of mystical phenomena and religious practices generally identified with the occult, including: fortunetelling; extrasensory perception (ESP); telepathy; clairvoyance; automatic writing; Ouija boards; and other games with magical or demonic spiritual orientation; astrology (horoscopes); tea-leaf reading; tarot cards; palmistry; mind control; yoga; transcendental meditation; sorcery or witchcraft; telekinesis; levitation; astral projection; spiritism or spiritualism; seances; Satanism; animal and human sacrifices; animisim; and more."
Its easy for us to look at some of the things on this list and say we would never do it because that is obviously a practice of the occult. Satanism, sacrifices, and animism are a few of them. But what we have to be careful about are the things on this list that we want to defend as harmless. Those are the things that Satan has us desensitized to so that we think its just harmless fun. How many of us have read a horoscope or have it delivered to our Facebook page? How many people do yoga? How many watch medium shows or ghost hunter shows? How many have watched movies like Paranormal Activity and similar movies?

The old saying that "If you give the devil an inch and he'll take a mile" is what we see happening here. If we view things as harmless when the Bible says they are wrong then we are opening ourselves up to demonic influences in our lives. Those influences ultimately lead to us not being fully surrendered to God. My encouragement to you today is to really examine your life and see what areas you need to change because they are influenced by the occult.

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* As a side note, The Billy Graham Training Center Bible was used as a resource for this post. For more on "The Occult" check out what the BGTC Bible has to say. The points made and texts referenced in the BGTC Bible on "The Occult" include: It is "Condemned by God," Deuteronomy 18:10-12. It is "Punished by God," 1 Chronicles 10:13,14. There is "Deliverance by God" from it, Psalm 91:14.

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