Derek Prince called witchcraft the “religion of fallen humanity” and associated it with rebellion, idolatry and the occult. Occult practices include the use of horoscopes, pendulums, or tarot cards. To give the devil his due, these practices work to some extent, but that’s just the bait, the demonic deception, the worm that makes the hook look attractive. When we take the bait we push the Holy Spirit aside.
When we yearn for the supernatural we should yearn for the real thing, not a demonic substitute. No fancy yoga position could ever replace repentance. No fortune teller could ever replace a real church.
Witchcraft can also be associated with activities that appear to have nothing to do with the occult such as watching pornography. People who think they are too smart to be fooled by fortune tellers are readily hooked by lust. If you are involved in this addiction, stop submitting to its demonic influence. If not, there’s a basket full of other addictions including gluttony, greed, fear and anger to avoid as well.
Most of these ideas are relatively new for me and you are welcome to set me straight in the comments below.
When I was a teenager my family and I watched the 1959 film The Diary of Anne Frank in our living room. Anne died in a Nazi concentration camp, but she left behind a diary of the events that occurred while her family was in hiding. A memorable part of the movie was when she expressed her belief that people were good at heart.
The reason the idea that we are good at heart is wrong is because it is sentimental. It is a false form of consolation, because it looks for goodness in the wrong place. Rather than acknowledging that God is good, it claims that somewhere deep down inside of us we are.
To a society that rejects Jesus, we mythologize the Kingdom of God rather than preach it. To a society that blatantly intimidates with sexual addiction, we downplay the need for repentance. Alisa Childers wrote that one of the five signs that one’s church was becoming progressive is “[t]he heart of the gospel message shifts from sin and redemption to social justice”.
I’m still trying to figure this out. You are welcome to tell me what you think about people being good at heart.
I am grateful to Michael Wilson for presenting George Barna’s research and to Bruce Cooper for pointing out Alisa Childers’ criticism of progressive Christianity.
Final thought: After David impregnated Bathsheba, had her husband Uriah killed to avoid scandal, and was called out for it by Nathan (2 Samuel 11-12), he didn’t think much of his heart. He wanted God to create in him a clean one (Psalm 51).
Addiction weakens a person and undermines that person’s community. When addiction is socially promoted one needs to ask just who is benefiting? Anybody socially promoting addictive behavior is trying to undermine some community by weakening its members.
Here are some points from the plan that Makov highlighted.
Marriage shall be outlawed and there shall be no family life as we know it.
Children will be removed from their parents at an early-age and brought up by wards as state property.
Women will he degraded through the continued process of “women’s liberation” movements.
Free sex shall be mandatory.
Pornography shall be promoted and be compulsory showing in every theater of cinema, including homosexual and lesbian pornography.
There may be an even deeper level of conspirators manipulating this “Committee of 300”. Those deeper conspirators would be demonic and they have been at it since that snake entered Eden (Genesis 3). You could read the Bible as God’s efforts to bring disobedient, but redeemed mankind, the Bride of Christ, back to the wedding feast (Revelation 19). Weaponizing sexuality would be a way for those not invited to try to spoil the wedding.
Now I know that’s a lot to swallow, but assuming you see this as something to be concerned about, what should we do? This is what I’ve come up with.
Affirm that sexuality remain within a traditional marriage between a husband who was born male and a wife who was born female.
Don’t engage in political or cultural activities that degrade or satirize the family including husbands, wives or their children.
Persevere by putting on the full armor of God in anticipation of His Son, Jesus, the Bridegroom.
The first two respond directly to this weaponized sexuality. The last one is there to confront those underlying demonic conspirators. You may have other suggestions.
For social media, although I am currently inactive on Facebook and Twitter, my accounts remain open. I think it is worthwhile to interact with others in such environments. The same goes for places like Stack Exchange and Quora where I also have open, but inactive accounts. At the moment my social media focus is on MeWe and this WordPress blog. I am also trying out GETTR.
Part of alt tech is to learn how to wear the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6). It is not just using open source software to protect one’s privacy or new platforms to avoid censorship. The user needs to get his act together. Without that armor I could still become corrupted and unwittingly corrupt others in turn.
By the next Fourth of July, God willing, I hope to be on Linux and know better how to wear that armor.
Jim Lee asked his readers when during the day we read the Bible? I could say I was following a yearly Bible reading plan with a small group and read the verses of the day when the notice arrived.
However, I thought why not start my own plan in addition to this focusing on each book in succession with a commentary as a guide?
I started this two weeks ago using David Pawson’s one hundred lecture series Unlocking the Bible. This commentary covers the whole Bible at an introductory level. I divided those one hundred lectures into two videos per week to make the plan last about a year.
This week I am continuing with Genesis. On each of these Sunday Walks I will link to an audio of the book I’m reading along with links to two of Pawson’s lectures.
Weekly Bible Reading:Genesis (Audio: King James Version read by Alexander Scourby) Commentary: David Pawson, Genesis Part 5 of 7 and Part 6 of 7, Unlocking the Bible
I used to find Plotinus, a 3rd century Platonist, interesting. His idea of the One suggested a kind of naturalistic or pantheistic spirituality. To the extent I understood any of this, the One was like a force field having the attributes philosophers might assign to a deity.
Little of this is attractive to me today, but that earlier exposure has kept me wary of Platonic or even Aristotelian influences. When I hear discussions of God that do not lead to repentance, salvation or a personal relationship with Jesus grounded in the special revelation of the Bible I wonder if there aren’t hidden presuppositions underlying the arguments that might be coming from ancient Greek, rather than Jewish or Christian, sources.
I’ve noticed these hidden ideas within various Christian traditions going back to Augustine or earlier. Some of them are fine, but it’s easy to forget that even the acceptable ones are cultural additions. So, I try to distinguish what is in the Bible from what is outside trying to get in. Then I put scripture over tradition should a conflict arise between the Word of God and that other stuff.
For those who wish more information on this especially as it pertains to questionable Greek cultural influence, see David Pawson’s lecture on “de-Greecing” the church:
Weekly Bible Readings:Genesis (Audio: King James Version read by Alexander Scourby) Commentary: David Pawson, Genesis Part 1 of 7 and Part 2 of 7, Unlocking the Bible
I learned from Michael Wilson’s blog that the San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone had called on the Catholic Church to deny Communion to prominent pro-abortion Catholics.
I agree with Archbishop Cordileone, but would add a twist to his call making it relevant even for non-Catholics: All Christians should advisethose who are pro-abortion to refrain from Communion until they have repented.
Does that sound harsh?
What would be harsh would be Satan’s accusations full of finger-pointing and despair with no hope of forgiveness on the other side. However, this call is different. It is a call to the discomfort of repentance and the liberation of change where pardon replaces that crash into the brick wall.
If one has a closed natural system where nothing can enter to support it from the outside, the system will run down. Any order will become disorder in a finite amount of time. Entropy is a measure of disorder.
In naturalistic or materialistic worldviews the universe we live in is supposed to be such a closed system. There is nothing outside it. Or, if there is, that supernatural stuff can’t break through the boundaries of the closed system to offer support.
In the Christian worldview not only is there an outside to the universe but that outside is powerful, willing and intelligent enough to both create the universe and make an ongoing difference to it. The material universe is not closed in this worldview although it could be hypothetically viewed as closed to study what would happen to it assuming the outside did not intervene.
For example, if we assumed nothing would stop erosion, weathering and traffic from the outside, we could ask how long the hypothetically closed system of the rock formations in the photo above would remain intact? No one doubts that there is intelligence outside this system of rock formations. Just by studying the system we are that intelligence outside it. After a study is made other people powerful and willing enough could use the findings to implement policies to preserve the formations. All of that study and preservation comes from outside this system of rock formations intervening to alter what would happen to it if those formations were left alone.
If we supposed that our universe were closed with no outside support, the main mystery would be how our universe came to be. With entropy we cannot claim that our universe had always been here to avoid addressing its origin. If our universe were infinitely old, it would have run down by now. Furthermore, any popping of ordered reality out of nothing or even out of less ordered stuff would require an explanation how that popping could increase orderliness without the assistance of some outside intelligence.
In the past it was believed that random mutations filtered through natural selection could serve as the mechanism allowing living organisms within a closed universe to evolve into ever more complex organisms without help from the outside. The change coming from random mutations would be mindlessly directed by natural selection to achieve this. R. A. Fisher even offered a mathematical proof that it would work.
However, with further study of mutation-selection the opposite is now known to happen. This perpetual motion mechanism is not what we thought it was. Even Fisher’s Theorem has been flipped by William F. Basener and John C. Sanford. The following podcast with John Sanford puts this in perspective.
Rather than describing a means by which evolution could occur mutation-selection describes the mechanism behind genetic entropy. Without outside help, living species in a closed system not only do not evolve into super-species, they run down just like everything else does. At some point in their genome degeneration they go extinct.