The word “occult” comes from the Latin word “occultus,” which means “clandestine”, “hidden” and/or “secret.” It refers to hidden knowledge. It is said in Jewish writings in the pre-Noah flood days that fallen angels taught man how to formulate incantations, spells and the forbidden knowledge of the “dark arts.” In fact, the occult is one of the many reason God sent the flood to destroy the wicked inhabitants. And as in the days of old, the practice of the occult is still alive and well today. America has an enduring love affair with the occult. Its influence weaves its way through entertainment, education, law enforcement, government, and society in general. The occult encompasses witchcraft, psychics, tarot card readers, new-age teachings, parapsychology, Satanism, and spiritualism.
What the Bible Says About the Occult
The Old Testament says in Deuteronomy 18:10-14:
“There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord: and because of these abominations the Lord thy God doth drive them out before thee. Thou shalt be perfect with the Lord thy God. For these nations, which thou shalt possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and unto diviners: but as for thee, the Lord thy God hath not suffered thee so to do.'
Revelation 21: 8 says that sorcerers will have their place in the “lake of fire.” A sorcerer is one that practices the use of supernatural power over others through the assistance of evil spirits, otherwise known as sorcery. When Paul was at Ephesus he preached the truth to the people. When they repented of their sins they brought their occult books and burned them (Acts 19:19).
Televangelism for the Occult
In the entertainment industry, television, movies, music, books, and games are evangelistic tools for the occult. Some of the most popular television shows today promote the occult. For example, “Medium” on NBC (consulter of familiar spirits), “Ghost Whispers” on CBS (consulter with familiar spirits, necromancy), and “Supernatural” on the CW. Popular psychic/medium John Edward had a show called “Crossing Over” from 2000-2006. Sylvia Browne is a weekly guest on the Montel Williams Show, and James Van Praagh is the co-executive producer of Ghost Whispers on CBS. Let's also consider the list of television programs in recent years with occult themes: The Secret Circle, Charmed, Eastwick, True Blood, Vampires Diaries, Wizards of Waverly, Ghost Hunters, My Babysitter is Vampire, Being Human , and Supernatural.
Ironically Kim Kardashian, on her reality tv show,"Kourtney and Kim Take New York," had a meeting with psychic medium John Edward. She wanted to communicate with her deceased father Robert Kardashian Sr. Kardashian stated that Edward was accurate in his reading. Unfortunately, this reading eventually led to her divorce after 72 days of being married to NBA basketball player Kris Humphries (source).
Occult and Child's Play
The revenue generated by the movies and books of Harry Potter totaled millions of dollars around the world. Fans flocked to the cinema and bookstores to watch the movies and read the books. In the music industry hard-rock groups and heavy metal bands heavily promote Satanism and the occult to our kids. It has even reached video games! One of the most popular role-playing games, “Dungeons and Dragons” is heavily influence by the occult.
Spying, Spy Games/Law Enforcement and Occult
Government agencies such as the CIA and FBI have used and continue to solicit the help of psychics for intelligence and spying purposes. The CIA is most famous for using psychics during the Cold War to spy on the former Soviet Union to learn about Russians military activities. In the 1979 Iran Hostage Crisis, psychics were used to know how the hostages were doing. In most police departments across the country psychics are used to help solve crimes. Donald Frew, a highly notable witch/wicca of the Covenant of the Goddess in Berkeley, California, is an occult consultant to the San Francisco police Inspector Sandi Gallant as well as other law enforcement agencies around the country (source).
Even the television show Medium is loosely based on the real life medium and profiler Allison DuBois. She has worked with the Texas Rangers, and the Glendale, Arizona police department by using her pyschic abilities. She also uses her abilities to communicate with the dead to solve criminal cases.
Post Modern America: Occult Love Affair
A survey in 2005 by the Gallup Organization found that 41% of those polled believed in extrasensory perception. Twenty six percent believed in clairvoyance, and 31% believed telepathy or psychic communication. Thirty one percent of the American general public believes in astrology and 39% believes it is scientific (wikipedia.org). In the Harris poll taken in 2003, 27% of the people surveyed believed in reincarnation, and 58% believed in ghosts.
The evidence is even in our cities! For almost every store-front church it seems as if there is a tarot card reader establishment to match it. On La Cienega Blvd in Los Angeles, California there are tarot card and palm reader places not to far from Jewish synagoges.
Many neighborhoods have Botanica stores in whih shoppers can purchase candles, potions, spiritual sundries to summon gods and goddesses (demons), and statues of saints and demons. These stores primarily cater to occult religions. They used to be exclusively in Latino neighborhoods, but have expanded out to other communities simply because the public has developed an interest in spiritualism and voodoo. Botanica stores, along with other types of new age stores, help market the occult to the public and give people access to its world.
On September 3rd, 2007 in the state Maryland, Wiccan high priest Ellwood “Bunky” Bartlett was the mega winner in the Maryland Mega Million lottery. His winnings totaled $33 million. He stated that the reason for his winning came from a tarot card prediction of his future in which he won the lottery. Since winning, Bartlett, a former accountant, plans to use some of the money to open a witch school to educate people in the craft. Not only does he plan to educate people in witchcraft, but he also plans to further the belief system to more people. His desire is to evangelize people into becoming wiccan’s (witches). The occult is gaining momentum in America. Ellwood “Bunky” Bartlett states that many people started to become curious about witchcraft because of the Harry Potter books.
As the body of Christ we need a wake-up call to move in the power of the Spirit . We are currently living in a post-Christian/post Modern age in America. People are drawn to the occult because of the power they see in it. The early Church was successful not just in the word of God. When pagans saw the demonstration of the power of the Holy Spirit over the power of darkness they destroyed their occult books. Many other people repented of their sins and came out of paganism. Deliverance ministries need to be fully developed and functional because people these days are involved in more demonic things.
Is America on it's way to becoming like ancient nation of Assyria? Has America become the modern day mistress of witchcraft?
Nahum 3:4 says, " Because of the multitude of whoredoms of the wellfavoured harlot, the mistress of witchcraft, that selleth nations through her whoredoms, and families through her witchcraft."