Friday, February 5, 2016

Entry #7 in the New Age Series


Today’s post concerns the very popular “Jesus Calling” devotional book by Sarah Young. Did you have any idea that it is very New Age? Here’s why.

It’s my understanding that Sarah started out as a Christian. Then she read “God Calling,” a New Age book whose authors were two anonymous women who referred to themselves as “the two listeners.” They operated in “spiritual dictation,” believing they were receiving personal messages from God. It was a popular book on New Age participants’ bookshelves decades ago. Because of Sarah Young’s endorsement of it, it has resurfaced and is popular again. She said, “It is a treasure to me.” She liked it so much that she wanted to receive personal messages from Jesus, so she began to operate in spiritual dictation, too. In other words, she became a channeler. How do we know that it is not from the real Jesus Christ? Well, you decide.

On page 246, the August 23 entry, he is talking about entrusting your loved ones to him. He says, “I took Isaac to the very point of death to free Abraham from son-worship. Both Abraham and Isaac suffered terribly because of the father’s undisciplined emotions. I detest idolatry, even in the form of parental love.” Abraham was being obedient to God, not worshipping Isaac. And what undisciplined emotions was this "Jesus" talking about?

On page 376, the December 25 entry, as he is talking about his birth, he says, “I accepted the limitations of infancy under the most appalling conditions—a filthy stable. That was a dark night for me…” Wouldn’t it be more likely that it was a dark night for Satan? Jesus was glad to give up Heaven for earth. In my opinion, the only thing that might appall Jesus is sin. Paul said in Philippians 4:11 that he had learned to be content in whatever situation he found himself. Wouldn’t the Savior feel that way even more?  And he thought that a filthy stable is "the most appalling conditions?"  Can you think of anything more appalling?  Yeah, I can, too.

“Jesus Calling” is rife with references to “My Presence.” That sounds good until you discover that the New Age is also rife with these same references, and especially with both words capitalized. There is even a New Age book called, “Practicing the Presence,” by Joel Goldsmith, in which he states, “All is God manifested…God constitutes the life, the mind, and the Soul of every individual.” We’ve already established that God is not in every human, but He lives in every Christian.

One last point for today. The New Age refers often to Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” They suggest that it is a call to sit in silence and listen for God’s voice when it is actually a call, according to Matthew Henry and others, to the nations to literally “shut up” and be still and know that HE is God. It is taken out of context. God is speaking to the nations in this verse. I have to admit…I had interpreted it as sitting in silence, too, but if we’re supposed to be quiet and listen and think on nothing, wouldn’t it make sense that Satan could drop a few ideas into our heads in that time, too? And didn’t King David say, “Blessed is the one…who meditates on His law day and night?” Psalm 1:2

Warren B. Smith, a man who spent years in the New Age then got saved, has written several books. One is “Another Jesus Calling” in which he points out so many, many New Age tendencies in “Jesus Calling.” It is available from amazon.com. I have taken some of the info in this post from this book. There is much more.

Stay tuned!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Entry #6 in the New Age Series



Today let's look at Neale Donald Walsch. http://www.benchmarkcoaching.com/law2.html

In this entry about him, he is quoted as saying, "The purpose of life is to recreate ourselves anew in the highest version of the grandest vision we ever had about ourselves..." This is in direct opposition to the Bible, which says our purpose is to bring glory to God. Isaiah 43:7

One quote attributed to him at http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/9374.Neale_Donald_Walsch  is, “There is no truth except the truth that exists within you.  Everything else is what someone is telling you.”  However, in John 14:6, Jesus says, "I am the way  and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me."

Another quote from that same website is, "The meaning of everything is the meaning I give it."  (Please feel free to do a search for any of the names I throw out at you. There is MUCH to be learned about them all and not nearly enough space here for all that information. I just want you to be aware of who they are in case you hear their names or read about them somewhere. Believe me, as we go along you'll see some very well known names.) Walsch is a New Age leader who has authored several books, one of which is "Conversations with God." In the beginning of the book, he thanks "my best friend, God," then Walsch's wife, Nancy, "on a somewhat different plane, though no less heavenly..." Do you see how he has equated his wife with God? Of course, that's because New Age folks believe that everyone is God.

He also thanks such "teachers" as Ellen DeGeneres, Anne Heche (who was her lover several years ago,) Jerry Jampolsky, Marianne Williamson, and Oprah Winfrey. More on Marianne and Oprah later.

In this book, Walsch also experiences automatic writing, an occult phenomenon in which a person writes but not under their own power. Their hand literally writes without the person's control of it. This is a way of channeling a spirit guide. We spoke earlier about channeling and how it is occult. The channeler is under Satanic influence and invites demonic activity. Of course, they don't refer to it as demonic. Sometimes they will even say they're channeling Jesus. Of course, this is never how Jesus works. Our relationship with Jesus is not occult. It can't be since the Bible tells us to stay away from anything occult. Again, a search will tell you much. Here's what Wikipedia says about it. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_writing (If you are one who has trouble trusting Wikipedia, please feel free to search other sites for information you deem more trustworthy.)

This site has many quotes by Walsch that are pretty "far out."  Compare them with scripture.  You'll find many of them are way off from what God really says.

More later! Stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Entry #5 in the New Age Series


Here's a New Age leader I'm sure most of you have heard of...Robert Schuller. Although he died last year, he was on TV for years. As you were channel surfing, you probably saw him in his powder blue robe preaching in his Crystal Cathedral, a massive all-glass structure in Garden Grove, CA. Over the years, he invited various celebrities to join him at his pulpit. He wrote several books, one of which is, "If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It." Let's look at a few quotes from it.

"I characterize the basic needs of people as follows: food, clothing, and shelter; security; family and friends; to understand and be appreciated; to help others, to find God." Notice God's ranking in this list! Odd for a preacher, don't you think?

Here's another one: "Treat yourself right. Take care of yourself and others will start treating you better. You deserve the best." Another selfish, self-esteem, New Age statement. Does it agree with the Bible?  Doesn’t the Bible say that we’re supposed to put others first?

The last one I have for you is: "I believe! I believe! I believe! Even if the words don't come naturally, force yourself to repeat them morning, noon and night. Force them into your subconscious. These words will give you the power to face life again. I guarantee it!" Believe what? In yourself, I suppose. And Who is our power to face life? The Holy Spirit, not some mantra we're supposed to force ourselves to repeat in order to feel good. This is just a fraction of what Schuller is responsible for feeding innocents. You can Google him and find much more.

So far we've discussed two New Age leaders who have had much unholy influence over the years on untold numbers of people. These were mild. It heats up a bit. Join me in a couple of days for discussion on another. I'll leave you to  your thoughts on today's post and also give you time to Google Robert Schuller.  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Entry #4 in the New Age Series

Did you figure out what was wrong in the Noah story from the pictures in the last post? Here it is: It talks about the animals’ and man’s “goodness.” The true account in the Bible never mentions anything about the animals’ or man’s “goodness.” In fact, David says that no one (meaning no person) is good, (Psalm 14:3) and Jesus says that only God is good. (Matthew 19:17) The New Age would believe that man is good because they think we are all God, therefore they would think that we would have to be considered good. They also are into self-esteem and being sure you’re respected and treated well by others. Sounds a bit selfish to us Christians who are taught in the Bible to die to self, doesn’t it?

As I said before, the New Age is a conglomerate religion in that they have drawn on ideas from just about every religion in existence, including Christianity. You can join them and bring Jesus with you if you wish, but you just can’t claim that He’s the only way to Heaven or to God. They even have their own God, Jesus, and Holy Spirit, which sounds good to begin with, but on further investigation you find that they are not the same as our God, Jesus, and Holy Spirit. We’ll address that later.

There are many New Age leaders, some you’ve heard of and some you haven’t. Here are just a few: Norman Vincent Peale, Alice Bailey, Jerry Jampolsky, Dr. Bernie Siegel, Neale Donald Walsch, Ken Blanchard, and MANY more.  Brace yourself...in a few days you'll read some names here that may shock you.

You’ve probably heard of Norman Vincent Peale. (He died in 1993.) I remember hearing of him when I was a child in the '60s and about a book he wrote that practically everyone has heard of: “The Power of Positive Thinking.” Sounds good, doesn’t it? Let’s investigate.

In the introduction to “The Power of Positive Thinking,” he says you can rise above obstacles “…by channeling spiritual power through your thoughts.” Channeling is occult and the Bible tells us very plainly that we are to stay away from anything that smacks of the occult, including mediums, witchcraft, sorcerers, etc. (Deuteronomy 18:9-12) Galatians 5:20-21 speaks of those who will not inherit the kingdom of God and includes those involved with witchcraft. There is much more in the Bible about the occult. A simple internet search will show you all you want to know about where to find this in the Bible.

Here are a couple of Peale’s quotes: “Practice self-affirmations, for example…I can do all things through belief in myself.” Did you catch that? Isn’t that in direct opposition to the Bible in Philippians 4:13 which says, “I can do all things through Christ…?” Here’s another quote of his: "Only use positive thoughts in prayers, never negative. Only positive thoughts get results.” Does that mean if I’m on my face before God crying out to Him in pain (not a very positive situation) that He won’t answer me? No. It does not. He also quotes an “inspiring friend,” who said, “Learn to pray big prayers. God will rate you according to the size of your prayers.” Not true. In fact, the Bible speaks of not praying long, wordy prayers just for the sake of wordiness.

Norman Vincent Peale pastored Marble Collegiate Church in NYC for 52 years. I heard Donald Trump on the radio awhile back saying that he had attended that church as a young man and Peale was his pastor.

Part of Peale's and his church’s legacy??? Guideposts Magazine! No wonder so many people have read it for decades…my guess is that it’s unrealistically positive and makes them feel ecstatic!

You may want to take a few minutes to do a search for Norman Vincent Peale, but keep your Christian hat on...don't be fooled by all the positive things you'll read!  Speaking positive things doesn't make someone a Christian.

More to come.  I'd love to hear from you!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Entry #3 in the New Age Series

Have you had time to study the scripture passages from the previous post?  You'll remember that we talked about how Satan makes things that are not of the Lord easy to swallow.  Here's an example of "easy to swallow but off-track." Can you figure out what's wrong with the pictures below? (Hint: It's in the wording, not the pictures.) It took me two or three times of reading to my grandchildren to finally catch it! (Apologies to their parents, my daughter and her husband!) Compare this version to Genesis 8:16-19 in your Bible, or read it in KJV here. 16 Go out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and your sons’ wives with you. 17 Bring out with you every living thing of all flesh that is with you, birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, that they may breed abundantly on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth. 18 So Noah went out, and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him. 19 Every beast, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out by their families from the ark.

We MUST stay in communication with God through prayer and Bible study. If we don't know what's in the Bible, how can we know when something confronting us isn't biblical?

The New Age didn't die out with the hippies and flower children that some of us remember seeing on TV when we were children in the '60s and '70s. I lived in a pretty sheltered area of the country so TV was my only exposure to that culture, and my household didn't take it seriously. We just laughed them off as a bunch of weirdos. The New Age is alive and well and has gone through a bit of a transformation over the decades with the help of Shirley MacLaine and others who have polished it up and repackaged it so that respectable, intelligent people are being misled and are buying into it. You may remember that Shirley gained a bit of notoriety with her New Age beliefs, including informing the world that she is "God." (According to God Himself, she is not, by the way. The first Commandment says, "You shall have no other gods before Me." Exodus 20:3) She wrote an autobiographical book published in 1983 called "Out on a Limb." In 1987 it was made into a TV miniseries. Here is a clip where she discovers that she is "God" and announces it to the world. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccb2GsnOoBM Start at about the 3:00 mark.

AND...the New Agers are a peace-loving bunch, for the most part. I suppose if you're "God" you could be pretty peaceable, right?  It makes a lot of sense to me now when I think about folks who want to save the whales, and save the earth, and save the trees, and won't build a house or a business or a shopping center on a particular piece of land because there is a snail on the endangered species list whose habitat is there. You must save the whales and the earth and the trees and the snails because...they are "God." They believe that everything in the universe is connected, therefore everything is "God." Stay tuned!  (If you don't figure out what's wrong with the pictures below, I'll tell you in the next post.)

 

 

 



 





 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Entry # 2 in the New Age Series

In Matthew 24, Jesus and some of His disciples discuss "the end of the age." Lots of people don't want to talk about that, for different reasons. Fear, disbelief, "that's a long way off," etc., but He put it in the Bible. That should tell us that He at least wants us to look at it, but studying it is probably more what He had in mind.

When they asked Him when these things would occur and what would be the sign that He was returning and of the end of the age, the first thing He said to them was: "See to it that no one deceives you."   If we think we can't be deceived, we need to read verse 11 where He says, "Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many."

Paul lays a foundation for our study in Acts 20:27-31, especially in verse 30 when he says, "and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them."  He was in Miletus and sent for the elders of the church in Ephesus to give them this message. That was a 50-mile trip, not easy back then. For him to summon them on a trip like that seems to say that he was concerned and anxious to deliver this message to them.

The part that jumps out to me in that verse is "from among your own selves." How can that be? How can it be that people in our churches, who identify themselves as Christians, could deceive us? Maybe they don't set out to, but apparently it's possible or Jesus and Paul never would have warned us against their messages. Somewhere along the way a Christian gets off-track and believes something other than what Jesus has taught us and convinces someone else to believe it.  It catches fire and spreads from there.

Of course, we know Satan is behind it all. He is the master deceiver right? How does he make a Christian believe something outside of what Jesus has taught? By making it appealing. Pretty. Shiny. Comfortable. Easy to swallow. It happened in the Garden of Eden, right?

This leaves you with some Bible study.  The scriptures included in this post speak volumes and are worth your looking at until the next post in a couple of days or so.  I'm trying to make these posts short enough to hold your attention, so I'll close for now with this one thought: It's gonna get shocking, folks. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Let's Talk New Age

Making New Year's resolutions is something I gave up years and years ago because I, like pretty much everyone else, can't keep them.  I forget.  I lose interest.  It becomes more difficult than I expected.  Whatever excuse presents itself, that's what I use to avoid carrying out my well intentioned plans.  So...

...I will not say that my plan to publish more blog posts this year is a New Year's resolution but just something I hope to be able to carry out for more than a week.

If you are a Facebook friend of mine, you will remember that on September 1, 2015, I began a series of posts explaining to folks about the dangers of the New Age Movement, sometimes known as the New Spirituality.  New Age is a conglomeration of the world's religions, basically, but is made up, in large part, of Hinduism.  However, they are very open to you and whatever you believe.  Even if you're a Christian, they will accept you, but you can't bring along one of your most basic Christian beliefs...that Jesus Christ is the only Way to salvation.  You can come into their fold, but you must check that belief at the door as they believe there are many ways to salvation.  Therefore, it stands to reason that if you are New Age, you can't be Christian, and vice-versa.  However, before you go wagging a finger in your Christian friend's face because he or she has a New Age habit, remember that so few people are aware of the New Age and its habits and beliefs that they have just picked some of them up because they seem "nice."  And Jesus was "nice," right?  Here is one reason I'm making these posts.  Not enough people, especially Christians, are educated on the New Age.

In the next few days, I am going to be revamping my Facebook posts for this blog.  On Facebook, people tend to be uninterested in longer posts, so bringing them to my blog allows me to post them as they are on Facebook or edit them, adding info if I feel the need, or leaving off info that is unnecessary.

So let's get right into the first post from September 1, 2015.  I hope you'll follow along!  If you haven't read these, you're gonna learn something.  If you read them on Facebook, you may learn more here since they have been revamped.

Entry #1 in the New Age Series

Our small group at church has been studying the New Age Movement. It's been EXTREMELY interesting with lots of participation from the group. Eyes are being opened.

Let's start with a brief explanation of the New Age Movement, sometimes known as the "New Spirituality."  Basically, when you boil it all down, the New Age teaches that we are all God. Not only humans, but the trees, the birds, the rocks, the planets, the chairs, the carpet, the cars, the coathangers, the stars, the moon, etc.  They believe that everything that exists is connected through the universe and is therefore God. From the get-go, we can see that this is not compatible with Christianity when we remember that the first of the Ten Commandments is: "You shall have no other gods before Me." (Exodus 2:3)  Also, "Hear, o Israel:  The Lord our God, the Lord is one."  Deuteronomy 6:4

From this we understand that there is no such thing as a New Age Christian.  The New Age is pretty much all-inclusive.  If you want to join them, you can even bring Jesus Christ along with you, if you wish. You just can't say He's the only Way. (Jesus says in John 14:6 "I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father but through Me.") The New Age and Christianity are like oil and water;  they don't mix.

This is just a little introduction for you to chew on until the next post, which should be in just a day or two.  Stayed tuned!

(Feel free to contact me with your thoughts, but be nice.)  :)