When Bud and Shirley James went to a party and things began to drag, someone got out a Ouija board. A friend who was a Christian asked, “Will I have a baby?” The woman already had several children, and she and her husband didn’t plan for any more. However, the person operating the Ouija board replied, “Yes–twins!” Everybody had a good laugh! But six months later, nobody was laughing. The same woman gave birth to twins, who were still-born. What no one knew including the woman herself was that she was pregnant at the time.
Do things as this “just happen,” or can some manipulate information predicting the future? Long ago Saul the king of Israel wanted to know the future. He was going out to do battle with the Philistines and wanted to know if he would be victorious so Saul made a secret trip to the Witch at Endor and was shocked to learn of his impending doom which was soon enacted on the battlefield, (1 Samuel 28: 7-19).
In the New Testament Paul encountered a slave girl who could predict the future and, thereby, bring financial gain to her master, (See Acts 16:16-19). Think of the convenience. You would know where to invest, how much to bet on the game, whether or not a company would be profitable.
Seances, Ouija boards, tea leaf reading, and witches like the one who predicted Saul’s death have been with us for centuries. The Bible has a lot to say about the unseen world, or the spirit world. Instead of minimizing or ridiculing a belief in the unseen spirit world, the writers of Scripture uniformly warned against “tampering” or being involved in practices such as I have just described.
When Paul was at Ephesus, many miracles were done. It was a direct encounter with the spirit world. The demons were subject to Paul and he cast out more than a few evil spirits. About then the seven sons of a man, whose name was Sceva, decided to do the same thing, but instead of obeying them as they had Paul, evil spirits physically turned on the men “…so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded” in the words of Scripture. (Acts 19:16, KJV). Is it any wonder that truth is always stranger than fiction?
Years ago when my grandson was small, the Pokemon card game and video games were all the rage for kids. After playing the game for some time, he came to his mom one day and told her, “This isn’t a good game.” My daughter investigated further and unhappily found demon possession of the characters to be an element of the game. “But it’s just a game,” say some. The Bible, however, places spirits and the supernatural in the world of spiritual reality, never consigning them to a “make-believe” unreal world of fantasy. James, the half-brother of Jesus, wrote that we are to “resist the devil” and he added that as we do so, “he will flee from you” (James 4:7). Resisting is a great deal different than toying with something as a curiosity or a past-time.
Many today think of Satan as someone who might appear at a party dressed in a red suit with horns, a forked tail and carrying a pitch-fork. However, I am convinced that if Satan should appear today, he would have a dynamic personality, be handsome and forceful. He would be very popular, with a charisma that would overwhelm many people with his dynamic, forceful ways.
Rather than just taking my word, it would be far better for you to take your Bible and do a biographical study of what this book says about the devil and the unseen world. It may well surprise you.
Resource Reading: 1 Peter 5:6-9
Text: Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. James 4:7-8
GUIDELINES with Harold Sala – June 27, 2017