In the Summer of 1983, a group of high schoolers were hanging out one evening for a small birthday party with their classmate, Kayla. There was alcohol, minimal parental supervision, and the small handful of boys at the party who where trying their luck, hoping to land the grooviest chick in a game of “Spin the Bottle.” Justin looks at Lisa, putting his hand on the bottle, and says, “I think you might be the lucky lady tonight!” Dean, who was the least popular of all those in attendance, decides to stand up to the sr. Linebacker. “Don’t be a pervert Justin, just spin the stupid bottle..”
Justin, in an attempt to show off his strength combined with immaculate hand-eye coordination, spins the bottle with all the strength his wrist could accumulate.
The bottle begins spinning fast enough to defy the laws of centrifugal force, Dean even thought the bottle would rip into a thousand glass pieces, scattering themselves across the room. It begins to slow down, everyone creeps forward to see who Justin would have to take into the closet.. Slower and slower the bottle spins as it comes to a halt.
“Rebecca..” Lisa says in defeat. Rebecca was Kayla’s younger, and very much less good looking, sister. She was still yet to go into her freshman year of high school the following school year.
Kayla’s eyebrows raise, as Dean can hardly contain his laughter. “She has to become a woman eventually,” Kayla says. Rebecca looks at her sister with a look on her face as if to say, “why aren’t you defending me?” Rebecca began to feel nervous.
“I’m not kissing her!?” Justin exclaims. “She’s, UGLY!” “Justin!” Kayla shouts, “be nice!” Justin thoughts begin to race, trying to think of any way out of having to take Rebecca into the closet. “Lets play a different game, what about a board game or something?” Justin says. “Wimp..” replies Dean, “This game was your idea anyways.”
Staci, one of the other girls, a sophomore who came from a very unstable family, says to everyone, “I’ve got something even more scary we can play, it’s in my car.” At this point Justin is relieved to hear of any alternative, “Lets do it,” he says. “You don’t even know what ‘it’ is, Justin..” Kayla says. Rebecca promptly interrupts, “Whatever ‘it’ is, we’re doing it.”
Staci continues, “It’s a board game, how would you all like to talk to the dead?”
Good Morning/ Afternoon my friends,
While I hate to leave everyone with a cliff hanger, had we continued the story, this wouldn’t be a mere article regarding the occult, but instead a short story taking up way too much of your valuable time. The Idea is to communicate a few things regarding the thinking process of people who dabble in the occult.
If you, the reader, is someone who now follows Christ, and maybe a part of your testimony is that you came from a background of practicing the occult. If that is the case, then you’re not going to be offended when I say, “These people are typically, very foolish in just about every aspect of their life.” Surely you wouldn’t defend the life you used to live, just as I wouldn’t point at a meth user and say, “that guy really has his life together.”
You’ve been there, you know what happens when you pull out the board. For a lot of people who use the Ouija Board, they have no idea what they’re getting themselves into. They’re just “some kids at a party,” with alcohol, minimal supervision, and the desire to “impress a few ladies,” or show they aren’t afraid of anything. They have no idea that this board is something worthy of a level of fear you would never find in the natural world.
Okay so now that we’ve all got our fill of the “heeby-jeebies,” let’s go after this rationally so that instead of simply learning why you should avoid the occult, that instead you also learn how many are caught in its snare.
Paganism isn’t anything new, and we know that people who are drawn to the supernatural need some way they can pursue “spirituality,’ while simultaneously dodging God (you can learn more here: Transcending Spiritual Gymnastics). Paganism has always had various remedies for people, and while no temptation is new under the sun, some people are drawn to one transgression more than the others.
Some are drawn to sexual acts, others pursue substances like drugs and alcohol, some people lack courage and simply want everyone to like them, etc. While none of these issues are new, most people have a tendency to “pick their poison,” and various groups of pagans tend to scratch a particular itch a person is looking for.
Satanism (Read Here), through Anton LaVey, particularly found it beneficial to adopt aspects of the occult and attach them to Atheism, primarily focusing on sexual rituals to learn about the dark appetites within us. LaVey set the stage for the modern atheist, who believes in nothing beyond the natural, whilst turning around and in the same breath claiming to have admiration for spiritual beings and spirituality in general. He essentially normalized the hypocrisy we see today.
If we want to dig a little bit further back, we can see that Pagan lore has always made some pretty outlandish claims. Let’s take the story of Lillith for example, if you haven’t heard this one, it’s a story which entertains the idea that Adam had a wife before Eve. Essentially, Lillith was a disobedient wife, she refused to submit to Adam and the patriarchal system God established. So it’s no surprise, that the story of Lillith was predominantly held exclusively by smaller groups of pagans, but has now become a symbolic beacon of defiant power in the wake of the third wave of feminism.
There are various versions of the story, found in Mesopotamian & Arabic Mythology, but it’s prominent influence stems from Jewish mythology, with her major characteristics being established by the end of The Talmudic period. A lot of Jewish Mythology began forming during the 70 year Babylonian Exile, where the Jews became heavily influenced by Mesopotamian mythology.
The Bible actually tells us what the Babylonian exile was like, it wasn’t like the hellenistic period, where Jews marveled at the wisdom of the Greeks, the Babylonian enslavement was a horrific 70 years for the nation of Israel. Jeremiah 19:9 and Lamentations 4:10 explicitly tell us about child sacrifice and cannibalism. Mothers cooked their own children and ate them, they gave up their children to Moloch. It wasn’t another Egyptian enslavement where they were forced into labor, the Babylonian Exile was much more gruesome and humiliating for the Jewish people.
This was the Talmudic Period.. Mysticism and Occultism found roots among the Jews doing whatever they could to survive, and yet the modern pagan has actually said things, even to me, such as “well your religion comes from Judaism, so why don’t you believe the lore surrounding Lillith?”
Because it’s just that; Lore. While, yes, we as Christians adhere to the God of Israel, but that does not mean we agree with or condone every action the Israelites made or belief they held to. In fact, the entire book of Lamentations is about just that, it’s about Jeremiah agonizing over the decisions God’s people made, he walks through desolation and mourns the actions he sees committed by the Israelites.
Israel repeated a lot of these mistakes. Later the Hellenistic Period came, around roughly 323 BC, which gave birth to a sect of religious leaders known as the “Sadducees,” where Israels beliefs had become so polluted, that many of them missed their Messiah as he came and went.
So frankly, we are under no obligation to believe in Pagan lore simply because it gained popularity amongst Israelites at some of their worst times as a nation.
During Peter and Paul’s ministries, they had to make a lot of corrections to both Jews and Gentiles. The world was overrun with Paganism and it even continued after. If you’ve ever read “Foxes Book of the Martyrs,” you know that Pagans in local cities the apostles visited, often times were the very hands which caused barbaric cruelty putting the early church to death in horrific manners.
Even while all this was happening, Peter warned churches not to succumb to these practices, that the church wouldn’t make the same mistakes as Israel once did. If God’s own chosen people, commonly turned to other gods and practices, what makes us think we are any different? Why should we believe we aren’t prone to the same behavior?
“Be of sober spirit, be on the alert your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” [1 Peter 5:8]
To shed a little bit of context on that verse; contrary to popular belief, this verse doesn’t have anything to do with drugs and alcohol, Ephesians 5:18 is about alcohol, but this verse is about being vigilant against evil.
Probably one of the most famous churches for faltering to false teachings in those days, were the Colossians. Colossae was a city approximately 15km from Laodicea, where people lived extravagant lives and hardly took the scriptures serious. Both Paul and Peter pleaded with them to not give themselves over to seducing spirits, pagan practices were exuberant in the region, and the church in Collosae adopted many of their teachings.
While the Colossians/ Laodiceans faltered to it, the early churches were still given the same encouragements to remain strong in the faith no matter where they were Located.
“Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.”
[1 Corinthians 16:13]
“Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.”
[1 Corinthians 10:12]
Why do I bring these things up? This may sound like a closing point of this article, but it’s not even close. Today, the church world wide is facing a crisis, especially the church in wester cultures. Medias and corporate entities, Social media platforms all the way to employee handbooks are all saying the same thing, “conform.” There is an attack on doctrine, and even more so, an attack on God’s order. They’re backing us into a corner, causing us to feel as though our very existence and presence on earth, hinges on that one word, which translates better to, “compromise.”
The early church shared this dilemma, but the early church didn’t have numbers reaching upwards of 2.2billion people. Persecution was plentiful, yet it only plowed more people through the front doors to stand before the pulpit. We see this in the Middle East and Southeast Asia to this day, Christians are being slain day by day, but it’s just causing the church to grow rapidly in those regions, and the people coming to it are willing to die for it before they compromise.
So what’s wrong with the western churches? I would argue that with a higher standard of living, comes a stronger will to fight to preserve it. Fortunately, there’s a bible verse for that:
John 12:25, “Whoever loves this life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternity.”
Jesus isn’t saying here, “If you suffer for me, I’ll give you eternal life so your suffering can never end.” This is the same man who said, “they will hate you for my namesake.” Remember what I stated previously.. that with a higher standard of living, comes a stronger will to fight to preserve it.
We as a church need to remember that the ways of the world will consistently stand against us. They will fight tooth and nail to live under any law that isn’t God’s. However, we have microwaves, we have televisions and the new season of our favorite show is supposed to air in October. We have Honda Civic SI’s and lifted trucks, “for heavens sake, my child is one SAT Score away from being accepted into Stanford!”
Do you see what I’m getting at, beloved? We in the western church, will say with our mouths that these things are meaningless, but when we are confronted with a non-believer, or even a questionable person, we tuck our beliefs away in our coin purse to ensure we don’t fail our science class or have our business shut down for “discrimination.” We know we’re the ones being discriminated against, we always have been, but now we have lives, and we hide our faith to preserve it. I’m not going to act like I’m any less guilty of it from time to time as you are.
But, I’m a millennial whose fearlessness only takes over when hiding behind a computer screen, where the confrontational version of myself knows no bounds, so let’s get back to the topic at hand, Paganism. Even better so, modern paganism.
You don’t have to search the internet further than wikipedia to find this gem of a description regarding Wiccans and their fundamental beliefs.
These two deities are sometimes viewed as facets of a greater pantheistic divinity, which is regarded as an impersonal force or process rather than a personal deity. While duotheism or bitheism is traditional in Wicca, broader Wiccan beliefs range from polytheism to pantheism or monism, even to Goddess monotheism.”
Creepy.. In other words, “Your God doesn’t exist, but on no basis whatsoever we conclude there are 2 gods which revolve around symbols of darkness.” Wiccan’s today are generally just edgelords who are so passionate about hating the light that they masquerade their reverence for darkness by attributing it to nature harmonic resignations which dwell in such, in order to not raise any suspicion.
I remember in high school I had a science teacher my freshman year who was a practicing Wiccan. Besides the fact she walked around the school with no shoes on, she was actually a pretty nice lady. You have to remember that these people often times really do believe what they’re practicing is right, most of them would phrase themselves as, “good witches,” which alone is quite mockable, but I’ll refrain.
The thing I found interesting, is that she quickly became, “the cool teacher.” All the kids loved her, but being the sociological observer I am, I noticed their hatred for Christianity was more than double their love for this teacher. This ties into the whole point I made earlier, that people are ready to find any route that doesn’t lead to God, it sparks their interest as a new spiritual rabbit hole they can hide in before the day of reckoning strikes us all.
Going back to wikipedias description of Wiccan beliefs, while Duo/ Bitheism (2 godlike figures) is most common in traditional Wicca, the derivative sects would find solace in pantheism, which is a doctrine which “identifies God with the universe,” or, “regards the universe as a manifestation of God.” This is a clear twist of the scriptures, evident since most pagan beliefs are counterfeits of Biblical Doctrines, but I shouldn’t have to add that the universe is God’s creation, not his manifestation. Counterfeits commonly bear a stark contrast to biblical coachings. In other words, they all seem to be a philosophical perversion of the same truth. Superficially, all beliefs seem different, but at a second glance, you’ll see they’re almost always abstract perversions of what you find rooted in the Bible.
The wikipedia description of Wicca concludes with “Goddess Monotheism,” which comes as absolutely no surprise since Wicca is dominated by females, while there isn’t a clear statistic, many Wiccans will admit that the community is predominantly indwelt by women, though it doesn’t discriminate against men.
By now you’re probably asking, “but isn’t Wicca a minority group?” Yes, and no. in 1990 there was an estimated 8,000 practicing Wiccans in the United States, in 2008 there were about 340,000 practitioners. Is it any surprise that in a culture of horror movies which glorify witchcraft, and the growing interest in astrology, we see over 330,000 people “come to the faith” in just 18 years? Don’t think the trend stopped there, PEW Research Center ran a study in 2014, and found that in just 6 more years, Wicca grew from 340,000, to an estimated 1.5 million in America alone.
I have to move on from Wiccans, I’d love to talk about their candle sticks and witchy spell books, but if you want more information on the specifics of their practices, wiccanspells.info has all the information your heart desires on how “centering,” works, and how they summon demons who follow them around and torment them if they don’t “appease the spirits.” Point being: Don’t play with Ouija Boards, kids..
Now, I want to pause and add, dear friends, that I do apologize if I sound smug or facetious, but I can’t help but find some of these beliefs inherently uncanny. I understand, these folks are caught in webs of deception, but are they really? Atheism, I understand. That religion is stuffed down peoples throats from Kindergarten through College, but Wiccans have zero basis for these claims, it’s appears more to be a group of spiritually minded people, sprinting in any direction away from God. Can we even call them deceived, or would “willful rebellion,” better suit the core of their cause. Even an atheist would have to agree that even Christianity has more evidence supporting it than Wicca, or even the second largest pagan group in the US.. Neo-Druidism.
Me: “I’m glad you asked.”
Wikipedia defines Neo-Druidism as follows,
“Neo-Druidism forms the second largest pagan religion after Wicca, and like Wicca in turn shows significant heterogeneity. It draws several beliefs and inspirations from the Druids, the priest caste of the ancient pagan Celts. With the first Druid Order founded as early as 1717, the history of Neo-Druidism reaches back to the earliest origins of modern paganism. The Ancient Order of Druids founded in 1781 had many aspects of freemasonry, and have practiced rituals at Stonehenge since 1905. The Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids was established in 1964 by Ross Nichols. In the United States, the Ancient Order of Druids in America (AODA) was founded in 1912,the Reformed Druids of North America (RDNA) was established in 1963 and Ár nDraíocht Féin (ADF) in 1983 by Isaac Bonewits.”
To no surprise, they have a website, aoda.org, which states, “Founded in 1912 as a branch of the Ancient and Archaeological Order of Druids, today, AODA is a 501(c)(3) religious non-profit organization based in the United States that serves to benefit its members and the living earth.”
As a side note, I want to add that the 501(c)(3) Tax exemption status was not created exclusively for Christianity. Recently, the Government decided to recognize the Church of Satan as a legitimate organization worthy of the 501(c)(3) title. The lot of you, brothers and sisters, were surprised an outraged. It shouldn’t have been a surprise, but that’s a topic for another time.
The Neo-Druid’s website also share about themselves, “We walk a path of nature spirituality and inner transformation founded on personal experience and reconnection with the living earth.” So, 2 things here. For starters, this “one with nature,” stuff is starting to reveal itself as spiritual virtue signaling. However, the toxic philosophy is found where they say, “inner transformation founded on personal experience.” The very claim here, when you see past their grandiose sense of self-purpose, is that they believe spiritual paths can be rooted in subjective reality. First of all, to be in tune with yourself, you have to rely on your personal experiences. Let me rephrase that with emphasis, to be in tune with YOURSELF, YOU have to rely on YOUR PERSONAL experiences.
Just about every belief outside of the Abrahamic faiths revolves around either yourself, or you’re resonance with nature. However, an organization cannot claim 501(c)(3) tax exempt status, lest they give back to their community. Which is where we learn that the Neo-Druids are contributors (Sponsors) for the Xercies Society for Invertebrate Conservation… so, they help preserve bugs.
So this leads me to the last group I want to touch on.. I might have lost you at the Neo-Druids, having not sited a few sources you may have thought I was making all that up, but if you still haven’t rolled your eyes at me yet, don’t fret, I’m quite determined.
The last group calls itself, “LGBT Paganism.”
You’ll like this one, keep in mind that homosexuality NEEDS God to not exist in order for the group to have any validity as a healthy lifestyle.
ThoughtCo writes, “In the western world, distinct forms of paganism have been developed by and for members of the LGBT community. This is often considered necessary, as many neopagan beliefs ascribe to heterosexual, binarist fundamentals, such as “masculine” and “feminine” energy and venerating fertility.”
You can’t make this stuff up. They need the God of the Bible to not exist, while atheism doesn’t scratch their spiritual itch. So they construct new gods in their image, and their god is just as confused of its identity as they are. Beloved (and unbeliever), I mean this in good Christian love, how does anybody rationalize this? And now that the rationality of this is bluntly called into question, you might think, “that’s just one website, it’s probably not a real thing.
However, it’s not make believe, an author/ contributor on “The Queerness,” writes, “There are queer and trans lines of Wicca if you look for them.” says Kay “My personal practice is queer-centric and the WildWood (Witchcraft) Tradition I’m a part of, is beyond welcoming of queer folks. Queerness is sacred.”
So essentially, these people aren’t turned off the the idea of believing in God, they just want to choose a god which glorifies their lifestyles, rather than one that urges them to go against the grain. My friends, my overall objective isn’t to mock or harass these people, it’s not to be intolerant of their feelings or tell them they’re stupid. The whole purpose of Howe it Works, is “living in intellectual honesty.” My job here, is to call these beliefs into question. This is hypocrisy and intellectual suicide. They will deny the living God on the basis of “Science & Reason,” but every aspect of these lifestyles are elementary and lack authenticity. It’s not spiritual, it’s foolishness, and as a society we’re beginning to praise these beliefs while there’s an overall assault on Christians in every corner of the world.
If you’re a non-believer and you’ve read this far, I urge you to think back on a common argument made by your communities, “religion is conformity, it’s a means to control the populous.” There is nothing more rebellious to the ways of the world than following Jesus. There is nothing more upsetting to kings than bowing before the Lord. Even the Romans knew to distract the people with gladiator fights and feeding Christians to wild animals. These baseless things in life are distractions, if Christianity was what you think it is, then why has the world consistently stood against it? All the while, condoning and praising any group chasing after spirits. If you got a chance to read Transcending Spiritual Gymnastics, I go into depth on the New Age Movement, and point out that coming out of Atheism into an “Anything goes,” religion of unchecked spirituality causes the most unintelligible religious groups to gain traction when 2 years ago you were so sure “there’s nothing outside our 5 basic senses.”
Must we view Christianity in comparison to these beliefs before you finally admit, “Christianity isn’t that irrational after all.”