What do you think about when you hear the word witchcraft? Harry Potter? Psychics? Wicca and voodoo? What about reality TV star mediums? Many may dismiss it as fraudulent while others seek to make contact in the beyond to gain some esoteric knowledge only known to a few. This work of darkness not only hides behind the veil of human flesh deceiving and manipulating the unsuspecting, vulnerable, and ignorant; it ensnares the soul to be entangled in a web of spiritual destruction and demise.
Witchcraft is experienced on a daily basis from well-meaning friends, family, co-workers or associates. It besets us without warning or proclamation. Some parents want to control their adult children through financial or emotional manipulation. The un-seemingly harmless person who plays the victim card when in repeated distress. The annoying social vampire who swallows up your time and energy talking about him or herself, violating personal boundaries forcing friendship. It is the silent treatment, outbursts of anger or crying fits in hopes to allure and manipulate you into doing things the other party wants you to do. And the manifestations of it are endless.
The work of witchcraft is both natural and spiritual. In the book of Galatians, witchcraft is a natural desire:
“Now the works of the flesh are manifest which are these: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such the like. “ (1)
Witchcraft is also spiritual, referring to the work of sorcery such as seeking and conjuring up of spirits. Many believe when a medium seeks to have communication with the dead that they are in contact with the dead, for example a dead relative who can confirm their present circumstances or portend their future. Or believing that the spirit of a dead loved one is co-existing with them. Both assumptions are false. The living and the dead do not co-exist in the same realm nor should they have direct contact with each other because of the very nature of the worlds they both exist in.
In the book of first Samuel, Saul’s army was afraid of the Philistines and he sought counsel from the Lord, but “…when Saul inquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.” (2) When Saul could not get an answer from God, he requested the aid of the witch at Endor to communicate with the prophet Samuel from the dead about his outcome with the Philistines. All who practiced occultism (human sacrifice, divination, necromancy, enchantment and spells, mediums (aka consulter with familiar spirits), and magicians) (3) were to be excommunicated and put to death (4).
The witch at Endor knew this and asked for Saul (disguised) to swear that her life would not be harmed. After Saul promised she would not be punished, in verse 10 the medium asks who she should bring up but in verse twelve she was startled by what she saw because Samuel rose from the dead without her conjuring up a spirit to feign as if it were the prophet Samuel. The witch told Saul that she “saw gods ascending out of the earth,” (5) this means she saw individuals (be it men, angels, or demons) who were connected to the spiritual world. Samuel was not raised from the dead by this medium and this was not an exception to the rule. Witchcraft is hateful to God, has been and always will be forbidden. Although the Scripture does not divulge how he came from the dead, we do know he was raised from the dead and told Saul of his outcome.
The only One who has been given ALL power in heaven and in earth is Jesus Christ, who is the true Potentate, King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Only at his command principalities, powers, and rulers submit.
“For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him and for him.” (6)
Human beings do not have the divine right to resurrect from the dead or exercise control over demon spirits. Only believers in Christ Jesus have the power to expose, excommunicate, and bind demonic forces. No Christian should be talking to demons or seeking counsel from the dead.
Christians need not practice religious syncretism because the Word of God is sufficient for past, present, and future knowledge. It is possible for Christians to have spiritual experiences but these supernatural encounters will not violate the law of God.
In the story about the Rich Man and Lazarus, the rich man was in hell and asked Father Abraham to send Lazarus to warn his living relatives to not come to hell. Father Abraham responded to the rich man, “they have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them,” (7) but the rich man pressed that if one from the dead brought the news they would listen. Abraham said, “if they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rose from the dead.” (8)
- Galatians 5:19-21
- I Samuel 28:6
- Deuteronomy 18:9-12
- Leviticus 20:27
- I Samuel 28:14
- Colossians 1:16
- Luke 16:29
- Luke 16:31