Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Spirituality’s Dark Side .............. Parables 276

July 17, 1991

According to one study, 70% of all crimes committed by teens under 17 are motivated by occult involvement. Without verifying those figures, the fact that any teens are involved in the occult is distressing. What is this mysterious fraternity and why is it so fascinating?

Webster defines OCCULT as: “to hide... not revealed or secret” and “matters involving the action or influence of supernatural agencies or some secret knowledge of them.” In this case, supernatural refers to “an order of existence beyond the visible... spirits or devils.”

Some folks consider the dark side of the spirit world pure imagination but those in the occult will testify differently as will people who know their Bible and its Author. That God created spiritual beings, both obedient and disobedient, is well documented. In the New Testament alone, there are 112 references to “devil” or “devils”, 36 references to Satan, 7 to Beelzebub and 4 to “the prince of this world” (names of Satan), 12 to evil spirits, principalities and powers, 2 to the “tempter” and 4 calling Satan an “enemy.”

Scripture does not intend however to give glory to the evil side of the invisible realm. Satan is merely a created being, an angel that decided he would “be like God” and set himself in rebellion against God. According to the Bible, he has great power to deceive and destroy but he is not invincible.

Nevertheless, it is the power of Satan that fascinates some people. In his realm are extraordinary phenomena that dazzle those who do not know these phenomena are mere imitations. Occult power entices, but not to give life or meaning to life; the real power belongs to God.

Jesus, when speaking to some Jews who professed to believe in Him, described Satan. He said, “You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it...”

THE AUTHOR OF LUST: Lust (not just sexual but for many things) is a strong desire that grows stronger when it is fed and pampered but it is never satisfied. The person who lives to feed their lusts always feels empty and unfulfilled, a victim of the false promises made by an evil enemy.

A MURDERER: But Hebrews 2:14,15 tell how God the Son became a human being so He could participate in death. Then, through death, He destroyed the one who had the power of death, that is, the devil. The sacrifice of Christ delivers those who have been in bondage because of their fear of death. In other words, Jesus came to give eternal life and defeated this rebel Satan, taking the power of death away from him.

A LIAR AND DECEIVER: Revelation 12:9 says: “And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, who deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” According to another verse, he actively seeks those he can devour, leading them astray from faith in Christ and deliverance from eternal death.

His deception is so strong that the Bible says he seems transformed into an “angel of light” and his angels (demons) appear as “ministers of righteousness”. That is, up front he seems like truth from God and offers shortcuts to the deepest desires of our hearts... but it is deception.

Why does occult activity lead to crime? With such a leader behind it, it cannot lead to anything else. Lust, murder, lies, deception are at the root of criminal activity.

The antidote to the occult is personal knowledge of the true God through His Son. He represents love not lust, life not death, and truth not lies.

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