Sunday, November 27, 2022

Spiritual Warfare - Part 3

 


A look into witchcraft, voodoo, satanism, and the occult.


~~ Watch the Video ~~


Witchcraft and Occultism in Our Culture

Worship: Out of My Way

https://youtu.be/mQ_Kxr-4LjA



Outline:

  • Introduction
  • Traits of Wholeness
  • Review
  • Occult Practices
  • Why do people turn to occult practices?
  • Occult Practices From Our Culture
  • Occult Religions/Sects/Cults
  • Comments

Scriptures:

  • Deuteronomy 18:9-14
  • Ephesians 6: 10 - 18
  • Exodus 20:3
  • Genesis 12:1-3

Introduction

Did you know witchcraft used to be illegal?

What is the symbol of witchcraft?

  • Pentagram

The US military allows your symbol for your religious affiliation on your headstone.   In 2007 the first Wiccan pentacle was put on a headstone.

Witchcraft and occultism is becoming more and more accepted in our society.

Deuteronomy 18:9-14

9 “When you enter the land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not learn to imitate the detestable things of those nations. 10 There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, a soothsayer, one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, 11 or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who consults the dead. 12 For whoever does these things is detestable to the Lord; and because of these detestable things the Lord your God is going to drive them out before you. 13 You are to be blameless before the Lord your God. 14 For these nations, which you are going to dispossess, listen to soothsayers and diviners, but as for you, the Lord your God has not allowed you to do so.

  • Human sacrifice
  • Trying to know the future
  • Talking to spirits
  • Doing spells
  • Manipulating natural laws
  • Consulting the dead

These things are becoming more prevalent in our culture

Witchcraft is on the Rise

Rise in people practicing occult religions

There are occult ideas in

  • Movies
  • Books
  • Popular Music
  • Comic books

What are some recent movies that feature witchcraft / occult?

  • Dr Strange
  • Harry Potter
  • Black Panther

Spiritual But Not Religious

Has anybody ever been on a dating site?

What’s something people put for their religion nowadays?

  • Spiritual but not religious

People are turning from organized religion

Example: dating profile

  • Spiritual but not religious

Counter-culture

  • Anything but Christianity
  • The old oppressive system is wrong

Churches are saying we don’t want religion we want relationship

Follower of Jesus

Why in Wholeness?

People turn to other spirits or witch doctors for

  • Counseling
  • Advice
  • Healing

Multiple personality, depression, anger blamed on

  • Mental health
  • Demons

“ Magic is defined as a large body of beliefs and practices regarding supernatural powers which stand outside of the world of formal religion and yet are widely known and help people deal with their anxieties and insecurities.   It involves rituals to invoke supernatural powers to ward off misfortune or to alleviate it.”

–Yale lecture on Witchcraft

Alternative medicine

Today we will look at how these spiritual practices are becoming more prevalent in our culture


Traits of Wholeness

We are in our series called Seeking Wholeness

How can we be:

  • Spiritually healthy
  • Emotionally healthy
  • Mentally healthy

Dealing with life’s current stresses and also being healed from experiences/wounds of the past

We’re not just supposed to have eternal life

  • We’re supposed to have: joy, peace, patience, and self control here on earth

Learning not just what The Word instructs us to do, but learning how to implement it in our lives

Traits of Wholeness

  • Authenticity
  • Honesty
  • Kindness
  • Not seeking external approval / validation
  • Living by values and principles
  • Setting Boundaries
  • Taking ownership of your responsibilities
  • Living with purpose and passion
  • Optimism
  • Confidence
  • Healthy relationships with others
  • Not losing control of your emotions
  • Free from addictions
  • Addressing Conflict with truth and love
  • Vulnerability
  • Not critical or Judgemental
  • Not jealous
  • Genuinely applaud the success of others
  • Forgive those who have wronged you in the past
  • Know that you’re worthy of receiving love
  • Not afraid to fail
  • Able to manage irrational fear, worry, and anxiety
  • Selfless encounters with others
  • Not manipulating others trying to control their actions/reactions
  • You care about how others feel
  • Patient
  • Don’t give into peer/social pressure
  • Can communicate directly
  • Don’t take responsibility for other people's emotions
  • Take responsibility for your own emotions
  • Slow to anger
  • Ability to maturely express your wants, needs and desires
  • Being led by the Spirit

We want to become aware of our issues and empowered to manage/fix them.

Review

Review Armor of God

This is the primary way we fight spiritual warfare

Ephesians 6: 10 - 18

10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist on the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14Stand firm therefore, having belted your waist with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15and having strapped on your feet the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 With every prayer and request, pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be alert with all perseverance and every request for all the saints

We have an unseen enemy…the devil

We fight him with

  • Moral and righteous living
  • Living a life of “truthfulness”
  • “Right relationship with God”
  • Believing the gospel of Jesus Christ
  • Having our identity in Christ
  • Having faith in God
  • Having the hope of salvation
  • Reading, understanding and believing God's word
  • Hearing and obeying the Holy Spirit
  • Led by the Spirit

Review of Spirit Realm 1

We looked at the following stories to see how the satan operates:

  1. Jesus in the wilderness
  2. The Serpent in the Garden of Eden
  3. Job

Satan tries to tempt us with:

  • Immediate gratification / lust of the flesh
  • Pride
  • Proving ourselves
  • Seeking Validation from others
  • Giving power and material wealth in exchange for weakening our relationship with God
  • Questioned the authority of God
  • The promise of knowledge
  • The desire to be like God

We need to realize that we have an enemy

  • Negative consequences aren’t always a result of unrighteousness/sin
  • Negative consequences aren’t always God punishing us

Review of Spirit Realm 2

There are other spirit beings

  • elohim

Exodus 20:3

3“You shall have no other gods [elohim] before Me.

  • gods  = elohim

God’s warns us against issues

  • Worshiping other spirits
  • Consulting other spirits
  • Petitioning other spirits

Idol worship is worshiping these other spirits

In the Biblical they turned to spirits for

  • Talk to the dead - Saul/Samuel
  • Learn the future
  • Protection - golden calf
  • Sex
  • National peer pressure

In modern times, people still seek supernatural means to get the things they desire.

People turn to:

  • Witchcraft
  • Horoscopes
  • Love spells
  • Ouija board
  • Psychics
  • fortune tellers
  • tarot cards

God strictly forbids Christians from participating in these practices.

Melissa gave her testimony of what happened when she sought a psychic, and after being threatened with a curse she turned to a Christian friend for aid and became a devout Christian.

Occult Practices

What is the Occult?

Occult means hidden

supernatural, mystical, or magical beliefs, practices, or phenomena

"a secret society to study alchemy and the occult"

  –Oxford Dictionary

Britannica Definition

various theories and practices involving a belief in and knowledge or use of supernatural forces or beings. Such beliefs and practices—principally magical or divinatory—have occurred in all human societies throughout recorded history, with considerable variations both in their nature and in the attitude of societies toward them.

Occult Practices

Some occult practices include:

  • Divination
  • seeking to know the past, present or future
  • Palm reading
  • Tarot cards
  • Astrology
  • Horoscope
  • Sorcery or magic
  • seeking to manipulate reality for one’s on purpose
  • Spiritism –
  • seeking to communicate with the dead or other spirit entities
  • Channeling
  • Seances
  • Polytheism
  • Casting spells / curses
  • Blood sacrifice (Animal / human)
  • Out of body experiences
  • Astral projection
  • Sexual rituals
  • Mental telepathy
  • Burning candles / incense
  • Using gemstones
  • Herbology
  • Symbols
  • Jewelry
  • Tattoos

Involving other spirits or powers beyond what’s natural or common

* Similar to the list of things God forbids

Access

Most of the time people are demon possess they were involved in these

  • Or they’re family was

Role of the Expert

( Witch Doctor | Priest | Shaman | Psychic)

A lot of priests/top people are

  • Medical doctor
  • Psychotherapist
  • Minister
  • Mediator to access the spirits
  • Teacher
  • Mother / father

Why do people turn to occult practices?

  • Culture
  • Born into it / family
  • Relationships / Love
  • Revenge
  • Money / success
  • Power
  • Knowledge of the future or the unknown
  • Control
  • Worldly gain
  • Talk to deceased loved ones
  • God doesn’t answer
  • God said no
  • Sense of belonging
  • Understand their spiritual gifts
  • Curiosity
  • Protection
  • Prevent or alleviate misfortune

find out something that you didn’t know about

  • Your self
  • The future
  • The spirit world

And that will give you

  • Power
  • Peace
  • Meaning

Occult Practices From Our Culture

The cultures we live in can make some forbidden practices seem normal

Genesis 12:1-3

1Now the LORD said to Abram,

“Go from your country,

And from your relatives

And from your father’s house,

To the land which I will show you;

2And I will make you into a great nation,

And I will bless you,

And make your name great;

And you shall be a blessing;

3And I will bless those who bless you,

And the one who [a]curses you I will [b]curse.

And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”

Many of our cultures of origin have their own religious practices.   We are called to leave our land and separate from these practices.

As Christians we’re called to leave from our family of origin and follow YHWH just like Abraham

Healing

African

For generations, African beliefs and practices regarding witchcraft and traditional healing have been located at the intersection between the natural world and the supernatural world.

A distinct relationship exists between witchcraft beliefs and traditional healing methods. This relationship brings these two aspects of African culture together in such a complex manner that it is difficult to attempt to understand the dynamics of African witchcraft without referring to traditional healing methods, and vice versa.

  • – Natural and Supernatural: Intersections Between the Spiritual and Natural Worlds in African Witchcraft and Healing with Reference to Southern Africa by T. S. Petrus and D. L. Bogopa Abstract

Eastern Religions

Story: Chinese herb/medicine store

No distinction between food and medicine

  • “ in the western world you say… This is food… This is medicine“

Astrology

  • Horoscope zodiac
  • Chinese zodiac sign

Who knows what Chinese animal year they were born in?

Haiti / Voodoo

Blend Catholicism

  • St. Patrick vs Serpent God
  • Altars
  • Crosses

Haiti is

  • 80% Catholic
  • 20% Protestant
  • 100% Voodoo

Occult Practices in Black Panther

Necromancy

  • The fallen Black Panthers are sent to rest in the city of Necropolis

Ancestor worship

  • Ancestor veneration

Gemstones

  • Mineral = vibranium
  • Gemstones
  • Used for protection, healing
  • Beads

Herbalism

Plant empowers them to become black panther

Resurrection

Buried and resurrected to become Black Panther

  • “Breath”

Occult Religions/Sects/Cults

What are some religions/groups that have occult practices?

No scripture or sacred text

They practice a variety of the occult practices listed

Wicca / Witchcraft

  • Pagan witches
  • Satanic witches

Wicca is a nature-based spiritual practice dating back thousands of years.  Practitioners strive to connect with the universe.  Wiccans worship the Goddess and God, honoring the duality in nature.

Comes from the Celtic word wicca

Religious Beliefs

Those who practice witchcraft have the following for believes

  1. animism
  1. The belief that all natural objects: rocks trees mountains the ocean are alive and have a soul
  1. Pantheism
  1. They believe that everything is divine or has God in them. Divinity is inseparable and in nature and humanity
  1. Polytheism
  1. the belief in many gods

Have

  • Covens
  • High priest and priestesses
  • Rituals
  • Spells
  • Curses

The goal of witchcraft is spiritual fulfillment.  

Modern Wicca

British Gerald Gardner brought wicca mainstream in 1932 shortly after it became legalized

Interviewed on BBC watched by 12 million

Pagan witchcraft is

  • Feminist
  • Nature centered

Intergenerational Witches

In inter-generational witchcraft, witchcraft is passed down from generation to generation within the family. This is often held in secret. These are clandestine secret family religions passed down from one generation to another. This category of occultist is well organized, secret and very powerful. This includes what is referred to as the illuminati.

WitchTok

Large witch groups are forming on TikTok and Twitter.

Opposition from “the learned magician”, a practitioner who takes the occult seriously as a complex and scholarly pursuit, delighting in the theory, the complexity of rituals, and the broader philosophical implications of their beliefs.

How to Recognize a Witch

In the Church

Look at their

  • Jewelry
  • Tattoos
  • Clothes

“A witch will look like a witch”

Voodoo

Who has heard of voodoo?

50 million practitioners

Incorporates some Catholicism

Popular in

  • Benin, West Africa
  • Haiti
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Cuba
  • Brazil

Came into America through the slaves in New Orleans

People Think Voodoo is Evil

https://youtube.com/clip/UgkxijhrFs7CmXaKKicbH7y-Enfp83ljC6dj

Practices:

  • Animal Sacrifice
  • Spirit Possession
  • Drums in ceremonies
  • Zombies
  • Astral zombies - spirits captured in bottle
  • Bones of loved ones in ceremonies
  • Herbalism
  • Bocchio or Voodoo dolls

The Spiritual force of voodoo is a sacred forest in Benin

Branched off:

  • Santeria in Cuba
  • Candomble In Brazil

Santeria

Santeria is practiced by hundreds of thousands of devotees in the United States

Mix between

  • Yoruba religion of West Africa
  • Roman Catholic Christianity
  • Voodoo

Similar practices to voodoo

  • Some say it’s voodoo some say it’s separate
  • divination using Cowrie Shells

“There is one god who created the universe

God created a set of intermediaries called Orishas?”

  • That is who they worship
  • Sounds like the “Sons of God” in the bible

New Age

Popular in the 1990s

“A combination of

  • Eastern religion
  • Occult philosophy
  • American marketing”

This was the greatest challenge to Christianity in the 1990s

New Age Music:

  • Enya
  • Enigma

Satanism

Over 10 different branches/denominations

Some include…

Rationalistic Satanism

They believe in the God and Satan of the bible, but view of Satan as the good guy

Practice:

  • Human an animal sacrifice
  • Mysticism
  • Secretive
  • etc.

Think 1980’s metal rock

Church of Satan

Anton Szandor LaVey

1966

Don’t actually believe in Satan or God (atheist)

One rule: “Do as you will”

Worship of the flesh and not any spirit

Practices:

  • Orgies
  • etc.

Luciferianism

They stress the balance of light and dark and that each depends upon the other.

While Satanism revels in physical existence and Christianity focuses more on spirituality, Luciferians see their religion as one that seeks a balance of both, that human existence is an intersection of the two.

Lucifer isn’t “the devil” but the liberator.

May not consider themselves satanists

Demon Worship

Demonolatry

Demonolatry is basically the worship of demons.  

  • They worship demons and petition them in return for knowledge or power.

Some sects see each demon as a separate force or energy that can be used to aid in the practitioner's rituals or magic.

“Solomonic magician”

Ability to command demons to do your bidding, as some Jewish and Islamic traditions have believed of King Solomon.

Story: Demon rights

“To my further bemusement, it seemed that the tradition of Solomonic magic had recently faced accusations that its strict and authoritative approach to the command of demons amounted to a form of abuse, akin to domestic violence.”

Other African Religions/Practices

  • Ancestor worship
  • Juju - In a general sense, the term "juju" can be used to refer to magical properties dealing with good luck.
  • Necromancy
  • Shape shifting

Others

Also a rise in:

  • Neo-paganism
  • Celtic paganism

References

Armor of God Bible Study

Unchained Disciples : The Armor of God - Part 1

Unchained Disciples : The Armor of God - Part 2

Spiritual Warfare

Unchained Disciples : Spiritual Warfare - Part 1

Unchained Disciples : Spiritual Warfare 2

Demons (book)

Michael Heiser

Season of the witch

fourth watch

Stephen Darby

  • Your Problem Is Witches
  • Your Problem is Witches II
  • Your Problem is Witches III (Generational Curses)
  • Pray against witchcraft
  • Uncovering Occultic Strongholds

14. Witchcraft and magic

Yale Courses

America’s hidden stories: Salem secret

Smithsonian channel

WitchTok

https://theconversation.com/witchtok-the-rise-of-the-occult-on-social-media-has-eerie-parallels-with-the-16th-century-168322

Build  An Army

Tim Timberlake

Superstition, astrology and the occult

Mike Mazzalongo | Bible talk.tv

What is Santeria? All about my religion

Luna Llena

The truth of voodoo revealed | ancient mystery

History channel

The extraordinary origins of modern pagan witchcraft | Britain’s wicked man

Timeline Dash world history documentary

DISCUSSION ON WITCHCRAFT, WICCA NEO-PAGANISM AND AFRICAN TRADITIONS (ucalgary.ca)

United States Department of Veterans Affairs emblems for headstones and markers - Wikipedia

Extra

From Stephen Darby

You need to renounce/repent from:

  1. Out of body experiences
  2. Hipnosis
  3. Ouija board
  4. Playing bloody Mary
  5. Slender man
  6. Mental telepathy
  7. Spells and curses
  8. Automatic writing
  • channeling
  1. Trances
  • You’re awake mind is a blocker to the demonic
  • Stay in your mind
  • Don’t do anything to get you out of your mind
  1. Spirit guides
  2. Ancestor worship
  3. Fortunetelling
  4. Divination
  5. psychics
  6. Tarot cards
  7. Palm reading
  8. Tea leaves
  9.  water witching
  10. Levitation
  11. witchcraft
  12. Wicca
  13. Sorcery
  14. Satanism
  15. Astrology
  16. Horoscopes
  17. Astral projection
  18. séances
  19. Black magic
  20. White magic
  21. Crystals or charms
  22. Entertaining spirit wives or spirit husbands
  23. Mysticism
  24. Superstitions
  25. Mind control
  26. Transcendental meditation
  27. Yoga
  28. New Age teaching
  29. Church of Scientology
  30. Universalism
  31. Harry Krishna
  32. Native American spirit worship
  33. Freemasonry
  34. Mormonism
  35. Jehovah witness

You should pray:

  • All witchcraft power go back to your owner
  • Every arrow fired in my life go back and find your owner
  • I break every agreement made in my dreams
  • Expose anyone operating in witchcraft in my life

You need to go back and renounce some things.

  • You need to remember what you did and confess it
  • The consequences may still happen
  • Ask God to show you what the door was opened

Wesley’s Notes on Witchcraft

Witchcraft not only gives that honor to the devil which is due to God alone, but bids defiance to the divine providence, wages war with God’s government, puts his work into the devil’s hand, expecting him to do good and evil. By our law, consulting, covenanting with, invocating, or employing any evil spirit to any intent whatever, and exercising any enchantment, charm, or sorcery, whereby hurt shall be done to any person, is made felony, without benefit of clergy; also pretending to tell where goods lost or stolen may be found, is an iniquity punishable by the judge, and the second offense with death.

  –Wesley’s Notes

Neopaganism

Witchcraft, wicca, druidry

What is neopaganism?

  • Nature religion, earth based spirituality
  • Vibrant, dynamic global cultural movement

They believe in

  • Deities
  • Spirits
  • Fairies
  • Pantheism
  • Animism
  • Polytheism

Celtic Paganism

The Celts or a collection of tribes that existed in Ireland, Britain, France and parts of Spain

Celtic worlds started in 1200 BCE

Druids

  • Conduct religious rites
  • Healer
  • Judge
  • Scholar
  • Mediate conflict

They have deities that live in the underworld, but still interact with humans

Many Celtic gods and goddesses are localized

Fairies

3 Spiritual Experience Types

In our country religious experience usually takes one of three forms

Church type

Formal religion

Doctrines

Usually supports the current social order

  • Not anarchistic

Sect Type

They make a point of rejecting any church type of religion

They seek individual perfection in high levels of spiritual experience on their own

They may reject “the world“

Example: amish

Cult Type

Characterized by mysticism in its ritual and mode of thinking

The individual seeks of self fulfilling religious experience usually provided by the Mystic element that is within the cult itself

Example: most occult practices

Main features

  • Center on a strong personality
  • React strongly against orthodoxy
  • Not doctrines that can be verified
  • Truth is available only to select few individuals
  • Reflect a “success” orientation
  • Their practices produce better people
  • Possibly Because of domestic system provide it to them by the leaders
  • Mystic fellowship with superhuman helpers
  • The leader is a channel or communicator for these
  • Believe in healing powers
  • Psychic powers designate the elite
  • Total devotion will give you more access and more power
  • Belief in ceremonial magic
  • Is a transformation to the highest point of being
  • Syncretism of various religion and philosophies
  • Appeal to individuals and not families

Example: Unitarian church

Prosperity doctrine:

  • Sanctification and success go hand-in-hand