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There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. (Deuteronomy 18:10)

It is human nature to want to know what is unknown, whether about the future or things other worldly. In short, we don’t like surprises and especially if they aren’t the good kind of surprises. To fulfill this desire, the pagan nations that surrounded Israel typically consulted mediums and soothsayers in order to acquire information about the future or to alter the future — or so they thought. Moses reminds the people that the God of Israel is the One — and the only One — who “declares the end from the beginning” (Isaiah 46:8-10).

So then, even as he prepares to describe what constitutes a true prophet in Israel, Moses warns against divination, soothsayers and wizards. God established that Israel could discern certain things but not with these perverted methods. As it is written, “Surely there is no enchantment with Jacob; neither is there any divination with Israel” (Numbers 23:23). It is written of the children of Issachar that they, “had understanding of the times” so Israel would know what to do. On the other hand, sorcery, wizardry and the like typically leads to occultism and crime, not to mention that God considers them to be “abominations” (Deuteronomy 18:9).

Messiah said that, “A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign (omen)” (Matthew 16:4). It is among those with wicked inclinations and a roaming eye that the soothsayers and wizards typically find an audience. In other words, it’s much more than just wanting to know the future — it’s indicative of wickedness. Let’s not forget that these enchanters and sorcerers are grouped with those who perform human sacrifice by offering their children to Molech. So what does this mean to us today?

These abominations are why God drove the Canaanites from the land and so His people, then and now, should not micmic these customs in any shape or form. I would suggest that this includes minimizing their impact by making them to be heroes in literature and film. In short, we are to be a holy people who are untainted by the things of this world, and especially when those things bring death and destruction. We are to be for life!

Blessings and Shalom,  




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