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How Neo-paganism Deceives the World and the Church

Why Nature Religions Predominate

by Bob DeWaay

 

God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. (Hebrews 1:1, 20)

 

The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29)

 

A pagan is someone with no authoritative revelation from God. As such, pagans must guess about God and the nature of the universe they live in. Pagan belief is diverse but centers on certain themes and ideas, mostly deifying the creation. Hebrews 1:1, 2 cited above, is our firewall against paganism: God has spoken! We need not grope about as pagans guessing about the nature of the world we live in.

The Foundation of a Biblical Worldview

The Bible begins with God’s creation of the universe out of nothing and the creation of both humans and non-humans. This implies a permanent Creator/created distinction. Only the Creator has eternal, non-contingent existence. The creation is contingent on the Creator for existence. This is essential for a Biblical worldview.

Concerning spiritual knowledge, Deuteronomy 29:29 cited above reveals two categories: secret things, and things revealed. A third category of knowledge is called general revelation and is accessible through human senses and categorized by God-given human reason. Secret spiritual knowledge is the realm of the occult. As creatures, humans are dependant on the Creator for valid knowledge about spiritual matters.

These categories of knowledge are seen in the beginning of Genesis. The bedrock of a Biblical Worldview is the transcendent God of creation making everything out of nothing. The capstone of creation is man, male and female, created in God’s image:

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:26, 27)

Notice that male and female equally bear God’s image. God interacts with them as rational beings, capable of functioning as rulers over the non-human creation. This requires knowledge gained through sense perception and reason. Human rationality is necessary for comprehending and obeying God-given moral law. This is revealed in Genesis 2.

Before there was any sin or rebellion, man was given much freedom. He also had responsibility: “Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it” (Genesis 2:15). He was free to make decisions: “The Lord God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely’” (Genesis 2:16). He was also given moral law with the responsibility to keep it: “but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die” (Genesis 2:17). Adam had circumscribed freedom. God retained His place as the ultimate law-giver but was also the creator and giver of freedom. Here we see the essence of a Biblical worldview: God has spoken. The content of God’s speech is understandable and loving, and it delineates between the Creator and creature.

Only humans, created in God’s image, use their rational minds to function in God’s creation. The naming of the animals is significant: “Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name” (Genesis 2:19). In the ancient world, to name something denoted authority over it (see Genesis 1:28). Furthermore, in naming Adam identified categories. This is a necessary aspect of human rationality. A pig is not a giraffe. All human knowledge is predicated on foundational laws that are part of creation. Being created in God’s image, humans can understand these laws. Therefore, A is not non-A at the same time and in the same relationship. Naming is an expression of that law and makes human language and human enterprise possible.

All of this would seem rather obvious if it were not challenged by neo-paganism. Pagans attack the idea of God’s transcendence, man’s creation in God’s image, man’s authority over the non-human creation, and the validity of categories and reason to function in the creation. They also reject the idea of God creating the world out of nothing and God as lawgiver. Thus, everything in Genesis is challenged and rejected by neo-pagans.

 

Occult Knowledge

Today, not only is God’s revealed truth rejected regarding spiritual and unseen things, but human reason also is rejected. Now, having neither valid revelation from God (according to neo-pagans) we also are without valid truth from general revelation. The only category remaining is the occult (secret spiritual knowledge). This is precisely what the Serpent offered in Genesis:

Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’? The woman said to the serpent, ‘From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’ The serpent said to the woman, ‘You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’ (Genesis 3:1-5)

Eve rebelled, and after her, Adam. Eve added to what God said (He never mentioned “touch it”) and rebelled against what was said. She was deceived, believing lies from a wicked spiritual source (Satan). The Serpent offered secret, spiritual knowledge that he claimed would make them like God. The rejection of God and His revelation erases the distinction between the Creator and the creature and leaves the creature in spiritual darkness, unsure of what God has said. Occult knowledge comes from spiritually wicked sources and intends to destroy us. Yet neo-paganism has nothing but occult knowledge, having rejected divine revelation and compromised truth from general revelation (what can be known using our God-given senses and rationality). If Satan and evil spirits exist as the Bible says, then those who embrace neo-pagan occultism are at the mercy of these evil forces intent in destroying them. This is true despite the warm, romantic feelings that might deceptively accompany occult practices.

Adam and Eve were immediately alienated from God and removed from the Garden. They were now under a spiritual curse (with the rest of creation). In theology we say that there are noetic effects of sin. These are described in Romans 1:21-23. In the realm of general revelation, we do not know as clearly as we ought and the situation is worse in regard to spiritual truth—it is rejected outright.

When I was a Junior at Iowa State University, having been converted to Christianity in the summer of 1971, I enrolled in a class on the philosophy of science. As a new Christian I was eager to think about what we can know and how we can know it. I was shocked at the first lecture, where the professor rejected the possibility of divine revelation out of hand and promoted a relativistic approach to all other possible knowledge. Here is the gist of his lecture:

There are only two possibilities of obtaining knowledge, divine revelation and the scientific method. Divine revelation is hogwash, it does not happen. The other method is therefore the only way of knowing anything. In the scientific method, we formulate theories. All theories are `true’ but many of them only work in some other universe than the one we are living in. Therefore we will only consider those which work in our universe. There is no such thing as “Truth” with a capital T, we only have theories that work for us, or do not.

I soon departed Iowa State to study theology.

As soon as divine revelation is rejected, despised or twisted we end up in despair of knowing the truth. In class I asked the professor in front of the other students if he implied that it was impossible to know the truth. He said “yes” and the class collectively gasped. It costs a lot of money not to learn anything true!

With the noetic effects of sin and the rejection of divine revelation, we have nothing left but the occult. This means that superstition reigns. Paul encountered such superstition in Athens and used the occasion to preach to them:

So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects. For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, “TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.” Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. (Acts 17:22, 23)

Paul claimed that God had furnished proof to all people and therefore commands them to repent:

Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30, 31)

 

When my professor rejected the possibility of divine revelation he rejected the possibility of salvation. Not only has God furnished proof—not asking for a blind leap into the dark—He made all humans accountable to future judgment based on objective proof given in the person and work of Christ. Jesus claimed that His word would stand in judgment of those who reject Him: “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day” (John 12:48).

 

The Profundity of Divine Revelation

If God has spoken as the Bible claims, everything is different. We need not grope in the dark wondering what sort of universe we live in. We need not have law based on the whims of tyrants. Consider the uniqueness of ancient Israel, to whom God spoke. The king was not a law unto himself and was subject to God’s revelation, written in Scripture and spoken by God’s prophets. For example:

When you enter the land which the Lord your God gives you, and you possess it and live in it, and you say, ‘I will set a king over me like all the nations who are around me,’ you shall surely set a king over you whom the Lord your God chooses, one from among your countrymen you shall set as king over yourselves; you may not put a foreigner over yourselves who is not your countryman. Moreover, he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor shall he cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, since the Lord has said to you, ‘You shall never again return that way.’ He shall not multiply wives for himself, or else his heart will turn away; nor shall he greatly increase silver and gold for himself. (Deuteronomy 17:14-17)

 

God’s covenant people were to be different, and their leaders should exemplify that. Power was not to be abused. The ground of restraint to abusive power was found in God’s verbal, written revelation:

Now it shall come about when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. It shall be with him and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the Lord his God, by carefully observing all the words of this law and these statutes, that his heart may not be lifted up above his countrymen and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, so that he and his sons may continue long in his kingdom in the midst of Israel. (Deuteronomy 17:18-20)

This passage is astounding and shows that in Moses we have the foundation of Western civilization, not in later Greece as some claim. In the ancient world the king’s whim was the law of the land. Not so in Israel (other than when they were in rebellion against God). The king was subject to divine revelation, written in God’s law. That kings were rebuked by prophets was also unique to Israel. The pagan nations had prophets, but they were propaganda mouthpieces for pagan kings and would not dare rebuke the king.

When this truth was rejected, dire consequences ensued. Consider this situation just before the captivity:

Now the king was sitting in the winter house in the ninth month, with a fire burning in the brazier before him. When Jehudi had read three or four columns, the king cut it with a scribe’s knife and threw it into the fire that was in the brazier, until all the scroll was consumed in the fire that was in the brazier. Yet the king and all his servants who heard all these words were not afraid, nor did they rend their garments. Even though Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah pleaded with the king not to burn the scroll, he would not listen to them. (Jeremiah 36:22-25)

 

The king was in rebellion against God and burned God’s word, to which he was supposed to be subject according to Moses in Deuteronomy 17! They were soon taken captive by the Babylonians.

In Romans, where Paul addressed universal human depravity, including that of unbelieving Jews, he then addresses the question of what benefit the Jews had. His answer: “Great in every respect. First of all, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God.” (Romans 3:2) In Deuteronomy, when they were in a better state, they realized that this was indeed a great benefit:

For what great nation is there that has a god so near to it as is the Lord our God whenever we call on Him? Or what great nation is there that has statutes and judgments as righteous as this whole law which I am setting before you today? (Deuteronomy 4:7, 8)

What a great benefit it is to be the recipients of divine revelation. Those who believe the gospel have the privilege of calling upon the name of the Lord, who though being the transcendent Creator, is near to the humble who call on Him. This is revealed in the prophets as well: “For thus says the high and exalted One Who lives forever, whose name is Holy, ‘I dwell on a high and holy place, And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit In order to revive the spirit of the lowly And to revive the heart of the contrite.’” (Isaiah 57:15) God is transcendent, but still condescends to intervene on behalf of those who come to Him on His terms.

 

How the Church Becomes Pagan

Understanding that only authoritative, inerrant revelation stands as the alternative to paganism, we can see why the situation is so dire in the contemporary church. Several movements have driven clear, well articulated truth from churches. One such movement is the church growth movement. I have documented it and the other movements in previous issues of CIC. But here we shall see how they set the stage for paganism.

The seeker movement exists to please the religious sensibilities of the “unchurched.” Since the unconverted see no value in clear authoritative Bible teaching, it is pushed aside. Inasmuch as the services and ministries of the large numbers of churches that have been infected by these ideas minimize and marginalize divine revelation in Scripture, the pagan ideas of those who attend soon become the agenda of the church. The people come into the church as functional pagans and stay that way. The only possible mitigating influence has been taken away. This situation is dire and, quite frankly, sinful.

In Hebrews the author rebukes those who do not want to learn:

Concerning him we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil. (Hebrews 5:11-14)

 

What they were not able to receive was teaching about the Melchizedek priesthood. So he rebukes them and then teaches it anyway. We need Christian leaders who will teach the Word of God and not give people what they want to hear if indeed they are dull of hearing. Failure to do so results in pagan thinking.

Other influences are even more devastating to the church. The Emergent movement rejects divine revelation by rejecting the truth that the Holy Spirit-inspired authors determine the meaning of Scripture. To them, the reader determines the meaning, and meaning is relative to the group. This means that there is no transcendent, once-for- all revealed truth that stands as judge over the ideas of the group. They reject divine revelation just as surely as that professor did; they are simply more coy about the process. Their system of doubt and hopelessness concerning truth is rather sophisticated, but pagan nevertheless.

Thus we have the horrid situation where divine revelation is rejected, or at least doubted. There is no way of knowing what God has said. General revelation from the creation is subject to the same process of doubt, so that men’s imaginations run wild, believing utter absurdities such as evolution, both biological and spiritual. They tell themselves that everything is evolving to a better, paradise-like future just as Eve was told that she would be like God. Thus we live in the midst of unmitigated paganism, with the church adding to the problem. Only what God HAS said can change this.

 

The ad hoc Spirituality of Neo-paganism

I began this article explaining what is not pagan: divine revelation found only in Scripture. All other spiritual knowledge is pagan. If asked what pagans believe and practice, I answer “anything and everything.” There are no boundaries. Satan promised Eve knowledge that was neither given by God nor found by using human rationality to observe the creation. It was spiritual knowledge which God forbade. Such illicit knowledge is rightly called “occult” or secret. Deuteronomy 29:29 says that such knowledge belongs only to God.

Once the boundary has been crossed and sin reigns, there remains no logical end to the process. I will catalogue the common beliefs of neo-paganism simply to show how ubiquitous it is, but an exhaustive list is impossible. There are more beliefs being imagined and practiced as I type this. There literally are no boundaries.

There is a church not far from my home that has gone liberal and also has an Emergent meeting in the evening. Several years ago they put out a sign that read “prairie grass restoration project.” They ceased mowing the lawn as various forms of plant life grew. The yard began to fill with thistles, scrub trees, various other weeds and some plants one would see in ditches, such as goldenrod. Over several years that yard has become a horrible eyesore for the neighborhood. Their version of neo-paganism was to let the earth “do its thing” without human intervention. In a Biblical worldview, even after the fall, Adam was to deal with thistles by the “sweat of his brow” in order eat despite the toil (Genesis 3:17-19). The pagans think mother earth will take care of them. They let the thistles grow.

But this is not the only way paganism is expressed. The medical center I visit has a lovely tilled garden with running water, beautiful flowers and a walking path. This is more in keeping with the Biblical idea to till the ground. But there is a problem: the end of the waking path issues into a labyrinth. I have seen people walk to the center of it and wait. Evidently they are getting in touch with the mother goddess or the rhythms of the universe. Once it was suggested to me that I walk out there and “soak up some Zen.” I decided to stick with medical treatment.

Though the outward appearance of these approaches is startlingly different, both are pagan. Pagan spirituality has no boundaries. The gods and goddesses of pagan religion do not really speak. Pagan ideas spring from human imagination cut loose from Biblical restraint. Like the rebellious Israeli king who cut up the scroll of God’s word and burned it, pagans have tossed aside the truth of God and their futile imaginations lead them anywhere and everywhere.

There are, however, consistent themes that emerge, and we can discuss them. The deification of nature is one of them. Having rejected the Creator, they worship the creation, be it human or non-human. I was once told by someone I shared the gospel with, “I put myself in the hands of the universe.” Rather than follow this or that god, goddess or local nature deity, this person went all the way to the entire universe. I responded, “The universe is impersonal and does not care about you.” Frankly, neither do any of the other imagined deities.

 

Romanticism

Since paganism has no boundaries and no transcendent God who speaks or judges sin, neo-pagans are free to imagine whatever they wish and make it their religion. Many would not approve of the utter brutality of ancient pagans, so they opt for a romantic approach. For example, transcendentalism such as expressed by Ralph Waldo Emerson was of the romantic nature. Emergent theology is romantic in that it imagines the emergence of an ideal future in which everything is reconciled to God. The theological liberalism under which I grew up was most definitely romantic, with liberal pastors seeing life through “rose colored glasses” and denying that God judges sin.

It makes sense that neo-paganism takes a romantic bent since it seems more desirable than the brutality of pagan deities as found in various pagan societies. For example, the polytheistic gods of ancient Babylon were imagined to have worse morals than most humans. God, having spoken, brings restraint to evil. The deities of the pagans offer no restraint. Since neo-paganism in America leeches off the Christian capital of previous generations, it takes on a romantic veneer as it ignores the fact that paganism offers no restraint to moral evil. Thus we believe in spiritual evolution as millions of babies are aborted. Reality is far more brutal and evil than the romantic transcendentals are willing to see.

 

Panentheism

The concept that God is in everything is a constant theme of neo-paganism. Pagans have always worshipped nature deities of one sort or another. A universe infused with God is the default belief of modern pagans. Expressions of this range from the individual who goes to unspoiled wilderness to get in touch with the mystery to complicated philosophical systems such as those of Eckhart Tolle and Ken Wilber. The line between panentheism and pantheism (that God is everything) is often blurred. For example, panentheists such as Emergent writers (Rob Bell and Brian McLaren for example) find inspiration from Ken Wilber who is fully pantheist.

We must remember that paganism has one singular them: the rejection of definitive divine revelation. That their ideas and practices are inconsistent does not trouble neo-pagans. They relish throwing off the shackles of the transcendent God of the Bible and are hardly picky about what the end result looks like. They believe that everything is evolving to a better future. There are temporary setbacks caused by those who refuse to get with the program. But they are convinced that evolutionary progress will go forward because God is in everything. God infuses the creation and is in the process of regaining divine unity.

 

Eco-feminism

Twenty years ago I saw an interesting broadcast on public television called “Goddess Remembered.” The theme of the broadcast was that male-dominated religion like Christianity with its threatening, male fire God in heaven is the cause of the evils seen in history to this day. Proof of this thesis was found from the Inquisition to the Salem witch trials. The human consciousness has a faint memory of the mother goddess, but it has been repressed through the dominance of Euro-males with bad motives. With large doses of deconstruction the video praised and promoted polytheistic feminine goddesses who are imagined to be warm and nurturing.

This process promotes the ecological values of goddess worship and opposes the supposed ecological destruction of the male-dominated Christian religion. This involves a seriously flawed rewrite of history. The fact is that goddesses as imagined by pagan religion have cared neither for human life nor the environment. For example, the Hindu Kali was portrayed as the goddess of death, with human skulls hung around her neck. Today this is whitewashed to be Kali as a benevolent mother goddess. Since there is no inerrant, divine revelation in paganism, any deity can be imagined however one sees fit. But the fact is that ancient female deities were notoriously vicious. The portrayal of God as the evil fire God is false and ignores that the Bible teaches that God is love. The goddesses of the pagans were seen as the threat to humans. They also had no particular desire to promote ecological preservation, and paganism in general does not provide any such ground.

 

The Deification of Nature

Neo-pagans imagine that if one deifies nature, then nature will be cared for and preserved. This has proven false in many ways. The lack of moral law that comes through rejecting God and His Word does not provide the grounds for any kind of ethic, including an environmental one. Tribalism, where nature is worshipped, has historically failed to care for the environment. The writings of Vishal Mangalwadi, the Christian Indian intellectual, document this. When there is no transcendent God, there are no consequences for moral failure. Vishal writes about how humans abuse their own gods. Idols are no threat to anyone and can always be melted down.

People imagine the noble savage who loves everyone and cares for the environment, but this is a myth. Deifying nature does not keep anyone from abusing it. Nature is no real threat to judge us. God is. I have documented how Nazis were neo-pagans who deified nature. The result was not paradise, but utter destruction.[i]

 

Rejection of Humans as Created in God’s Image

Paganism sees no reason that humans should have more value than the rest of creation. The Biblical account of God creating male and female in His image and giving them dominion over the rest of the creation is ridiculed and rejected. What God has said is seen as an excuse by wickedly motivated Euro-males to abuse the environment at will. The result of this thinking has surfaced a number of times where human enterprise is shelved in favor of saving supposedly threatened species. For example, right now there is an issue in California where there is a drought. Water that could have been used to irrigate crops for human consumption was diverted to the ocean for the sake of a species of fish that evidently needed it more than the humans did.

Since neo-pagans reject the Creator as the transcendent law-giver, they also reject the uniqueness of human beings created in His image. Human life is devalued and is seen in history as horrific consequences ensue. One obvious example is abortion. In Nazi Germany, Jews were exterminated because they were intractable, being people of the Book who were not fit for the Aryan, neo-pagan program. They would not give up their belief in the transcendent God of Torah.

 

Elitism

In my research for a radio show on global warming I read Al Gore’s book Earth in the Balance.  What becomes apparent is that environmental elitists see human beings waging a war on nature. We use our rational abilities to do what humans do, which is be productive and work at various enterprises. This offends Gore and his elitist followers. That humans multiply and fill the earth, as God commanded them to do in Genesis, is seen as a horrible problem that must be solved. Gore’s neo-pagan sensibilities can be seen throughout the book.

Others are even more radical. They call their ideas deep ecology. They forthrightly reject any notion about the importance of human life in relationship to other species. Some go so far as to suggest that most humans need to die so that those left can live in harmony with all of nature, not using their technological capabilities to gain an advantage. The truth is that using our rational minds to understand and survive in the world God put us in is good and necessary. The Bible condemns false teachers who reject reason: “But these, like unreasoning animals, born as creatures of instinct to be captured and killed, reviling where they have no knowledge, will in the destruction of those creatures also be destroyed.” (2Peter 2:12) We cannot live by instinct. When Adam and Eve sinned, God gave them animal skins to cover their nakedness. This Biblical truth totally offends neo-pagans who worship the creature rather than the creator.

 

Interconnectedness

The concept of the supposed interconnectedness of all things is often found in neo-pagan writings. This is closely related to panentheism, which claims God is in all things. We all are deemed connected to nature and one another is some mysterious way. This often takes on cosmic, spiritual dimensions. Jung posited the cosmic unconsciousness that not only connected all of current human consciousness, but connects all with what has gone before. Neo-pagan ideas have no boundaries because they are circumscribed neither by divine revelation nor by valid scientific inquiry. Theirs is a rogue spirituality that can take on just about any dress. It exists from the depth psychology of Jung to the human potential motivational speakers. From séances to Eastern meditation, neo-paganism offers freestyle spirituality with no threat of judgment from God, and, consequently, no need of redemption. They mock the idea of God’s wrath against sin.

The idea that everything is one is merely the rejection of God who transcends the creation and created everything in the universe out of nothing. Jesus Christ existed as God and with God from all eternity. He is not a created being. In the Incarnation, Christ never lost His eternal deity because it could not be lost. He is the great I AM. The interconnectedness of neo-paganism features only the supposed “Christ consciousness,” which is some type of spiritual aspect to the “all” that some have learned to tap into. Ken Wilber claims that Jesus knew this and was crucified for it. No! Jesus died for sins, once for all, the just for the unjust to bring us to God (1Peter 3:18). He bore our sins. He was not an Eastern guru who discovered the universal deity of the universe.

 

Meditation

The means to tune into the immanent (not transcendent) panentheistic God of neo-paganism is meditation. Whatever diversity one sees in pagan religion, one constant is meditation. From the simple to the deeply philosophical, all neo-pagans practice meditation (or think they ought to). This is not meditation on God’s once-for-all revealed Word, it is simply meditation. One travels inward to find peace and tranquility, often hoping for the cessation of thought. Tolle says that we can meet Presence (God as pantheistic) in the gaps (between conscious thought). When writing a chapter on Ken Wilber for a book, I read an interview he gave. His philosophy is very difficult to understand, and the interviewer asked him about that. Wilber’s response was to just meditate.

Meditation is the sine qua non (i.e. the indispensible, essential action, condition or ingredient) of neo-pagan religion. What these practitioners of meditation do not know is that a malevolent, spiritual force is behind their experience, however beneficial it may seem. As the Serpent deceived Eve in the Garden, claiming she would be like God, he continues to teach the same to neo-pagans today. Once the truth of God, revealed in the Bible, is rejected, the deception of Satan will take its place. Evil spirits give neo-paganism its spiritual power and reality. It truly is spiritual, in a most wicked sense of the word. The spiritual reality behind this is what drives it and is its Achilles heel. Liberal theologians who promote this monistic worldview cannot account for the possibility of a real Satan and real demons who deceive humans. If these exist, as the Bible says, then even the “good” experiences that people have in meditation are dangerous and damning. Wicked spirits have inhabited the spirit world for millennia. They know their way around, and they are intent to deceive. Meditation is the access humans have to these spirits, though they think they are contacting a panentheistic deity.

 

Turning to the Creator God

I have shared the truth about Christ, whose claims were vindicated with His bodily resurrection from the dead. The Bible says that Jesus is coming again to bring salvation to those who trust Him and judgment to those who reject him. Our only hope of knowing the truth that saves us and sets us free is repentance from the hopeless vanity of paganism and turning to God in faith. We need not grope around in the dark when we can know the God who brings light. Jesus called us to this light: “Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.’” (John 8:12) One would think this would gain a great response. But it did not: “This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil.”(John 3:19)

It is not necessary to live in darkness, believing pagan lies. Two months before I heard the professor claim that divine revelation was “hogwash” and that we cannot know the truth, I had come to know the truth through the gospel. I refused to listen to his lies.

Dear reader, I pray that you know that rejecting God means rejecting light and rejecting all hope. Repent of this and believe the gospel. When we see that God has spoken and we can know the truth, the light truly comes on.

It is sad that so many churches have become functionally pagan. If you have turned to God in faith, find fellowship where God’s truth is clearly taught. Gather with others to be encouraged in the truth. Those of us who are not pagan are in a minority wherever we are. Let’s stand firm and encourage one another in the truth. The truth of God’s Word is our firewall against paganism.

Issue 127; Spring 2014


End Notes


Critical Issues Commentary
bob@cicministry.org

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Unless otherwise noted, all Scriptures taken from the New American Standard Bible, © Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1988, 1995 The Lockman Foundation.

 

Article reposted with kind permission from the author.