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daughter
Oct 7th 2008, 08:14 AM
http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=1050874564
Jon Piper talking about the dangers of the occult... very well argued, and supported from the Bible. Might be useful in the run up to Halloween.

Elouise
Oct 7th 2008, 03:24 PM
Hallo Daughter.

I made time to listen to this; partly from curiosity that there could be a good resource available for christians and partly because I fried my brain trying to write a theological reflection on Christ focusssed social mission after reading government whitepapers.

I think having heard this sermon that I consider this to be a good resource for Christians. The way that Jon Piper approached the matter struck me as addressing more the problem of occult practices that have boldly walked into the church uncontested than those outside of the church engaged in occult practice who are ignorant of God.

Those who are ignorant need to hear who God is before they can begin to understand what they do is rebellion against God. The church when it allows in such practices under a veneer of Christian sounding jargon and scattergun out of context bible verses is like Isreal sinning as Jon Piper eloquently described and is not fitted to witness effectively to those lost in the wide umbrella that is the occult.

Sadly I have encountered too many who use the name of Christ whose interest is in abusing the name and power of God. They seek that which is known to God in 'prophecy' and 'words of knowledge' and demand they have a right to know in a way that makes Saul at his human worst look like a humble servent of God.
The scripture given explains what Isreal should have done to be set apart from the world whilst being in the world. It choose to follow human inclinations rather than God; no wonder the covenants had to be renwed, man kept breaking them. He still does today.
The marvellous thing is that God was willing to extend grace and restore a sinfilled nation when they humbled themselves and cried out they had failed him and turned away from him and to send His son so that man could be redemmed through the cross.

I think the most important part of Jons message is that God is more than capable of extending His grace to us abominable humans and I think this may be tied to God as love beyond human understanding of love. Our comprehension of love is imperfect whereas Gods is perfect.

The occult is described as being like the slaying of children but this is a God who finds all sin anethema. It is we humans who like to sit and grade sin into minor pecadillos and things that no right minded person would consent to engage in. To God sin is sin regardless of what that sin may be.

I do however dispute the notion of Jesus verses the occult. Perhaps for humans torn between the desires to fill their fleshy selfish natures and their spirit longing for a restored relationship with God there is this tension of duality but between Jesus and the nebulous morph that is covered by the label occult there is no competition. Christ is greater.

Another important point Jon raises is that faith is greater and matters more than human seeking after knowledge for knowledges own sake but I wish he could have elaborated a little to clarify the differance between learning because of a love of Christ and learning for self gradisment.

Perhaps the overarching message of importance is this. Christians should refrain from occult persuits and interests so that Christ can be seen by a fallen world in how they live so those in the world can wonder and question what it is that marks them as 'different'.

When I practised I used to laugh at Christians who told me they loved Christ who either did not recognise what they were doing in his name was not differant to what I did, I merely thought I was being more honest to myself about my objectives. It was those Christians who lived in the world but apart form the world as the Isrealites should have done who I could not and more importantly did not really want to hurt for they were covered by God in a way those who used his name and lived differant things to that which they claimed with their lips were not.

The section of James 4 gives a synopsis of the OT scriptures Jon based his teaching on.

9Marksfan
Oct 7th 2008, 08:03 PM
Excellent tool, Mary - Piper is always great! :)

renthead188
Oct 8th 2008, 06:47 AM
http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=1050874564
Jon Piper talking about the dangers of the occult... very well argued, and supported from the Bible. Might be useful in the run up to Halloween.

Thank you. I will be sure to listen to this later in the week when I've got some time.

starlitskie
Oct 20th 2008, 06:31 AM
I would have to disagree with some of this. I think if you showed this to an occultist they would just turn against it (i am an ex occultist). He says they do it to gain power over events outside their control and for most Wiccans I dont feel they do it for power. Some yes, but not all, and i think some would want to walk away right then and there. "Power over people" i quote... Wiccans cant cast spells on others without their permission. Other than that, it is good. I guess id feel better if it was separated into sections so that it did not merge all occultists together as they all have diff intentions

daughter
Oct 20th 2008, 08:55 AM
Well, I'm an ex witch, and I would agree with him that most wiccans I ever worked with, in formal covens or otherwise, were after some form of power. I certainly was... not as in I wanted to control people like puppets, but I wanted control over my environment, knowledge of the future, etc. Instead of giving control to God to work His will through His wisdom, I was taking control (or attempting to) for my own ends. In other words, as you summarise above, "to gain power over events outside their control." That is what magick is. Trying to use supernatural means to affect something that would otherwise be out of your control.

Because most wiccans feel that they are non manipulative of human beings they tend not to overlook the fact that they are trying to manipulate nature and the supernatural to their own ends. That's still seeking after power - just in a different way. Magick wouldn't work if there was no attempt to manipulate. In fact, magick IS manipulation, that's how it works.

I do know that it took me a long time as a witch to realise that I was working with demons, or that far from manipulating energies for magickal ends I was being manipulated myself. There's nothing more powerless than a witch in thrall to her magicks.

I would indeed have switched off to this when I was a witch, but it would still have been true. I think this message is more important for Christians to hear though... most witches would close down completely.

Bethany67
Oct 20th 2008, 09:04 AM
I would agree with him that most wiccans I ever worked with, in formal covens or otherwise, were after some form of power. I certainly was... not as in I wanted to control people like puppets, but I wanted control over my environment, knowledge of the future, etc. Instead of giving control to God to work His will through His wisdom, I was taking control (or attempting to) for my own ends.

Because most wiccans feel that they are non manipulative of human beings they tend not to overlook the fact that they are trying to manipulate nature and the supernatural to their own ends. That's still seeking after power - just in a different way. Magick wouldn't work if there was no attempt to manipulate. In fact, magick IS manipulation, that's how it works.

I haven't listened to the sermon yet, but from my years of being in the scene I'd have to agree with what daughter says. There were very few Wiccans I knew who actually observed the 'ethical restrictions' that they paid lipservice to - the deeper you go, the murkier it gets, with 'binding spells' and whatnot. Over here at least, once you get beyond the teen years, you're less likely to meet the white-lighters, the McWiccans, even if they start with what they consider the most ethical of approaches. It's a slippery slope.

Elouise
Oct 20th 2008, 12:05 PM
Starlitskie,

*Dons old pov as LHP occultist*


An occultist would listen to Jon Piper and would debate his point of view because western occult philosophy is based on the bible and a willingness to consider concepts and play with them. Its schewed, its twisted and yes it should certainly be contested with intelligent thought filled insightful appologetics but most occultists do know the basics of the bible often in hebrew and greek.
The reason an occultist would turn against a christian sermon would be poor scholarship, paucity of arguements and lack of critical reasonning.

The underlying principle behind western magicks is to create an effect that ripples RHP may claim to be doing the will of God LHP may claim to be acting in self interest but that underlying principle is occult 101.

Wiccans choose if they follow the human construction of the wiccan rede or no, many add their own exceptions human nature being what it is.

Be careful publically stating on a public forum you are an ex-occultist; it does carry a specific meaning and the big boys do read decent christian forums and they do ask searching questions. If you have not read and studied widely they will spot that and you and your testimony risk being dismissed. It is often far better to be honest and say you did it yourself and joined a group of teenagers who also dabbled and thought that was how occultists did things.
IF I had to I could claim linage and reason my old beliefs and have done with magisters of established orders. Please be careful and wise for the name of Christ matters and how we witness that matters.