|Series Theme: The Occult|
Title: 4. Fortune Telling
A simple consideration of this alternative approach to getting guidance in life.
1. Questions about Fortune Telling?
1.1 Why do people go to a fortune teller?
What do they want from it? What is missing in their lives that they are trying to remedy? People probably go to a fortune teller for one of two main reasons:
1.2 Is it a good thing to know about the future?
Surely knowing about the future means we are constantly focussing on the future and missing the significance of the present? If the future holds bad things, do we want to know about them and therefore worry about them? Unlimited knowledge would be bad.
1.3 What is behind our desire to know?
We perhaps feel that knowing gives us power over what will happen, we can have a greater control over our lives, it will bring a greater sense of security to us? But surely that isn't true? Simply knowing what will happen doesn't mean we can change it? Perhaps destiny is fixed?
1.4 What is the power that enables us to know? Have we got some inner force that tunes into time and reveals what is to come? Is there some power that can communicate with us to tell us what is coming? If there is such a power, is it good, is it truthful, is it “on our side”? How do we know how it works. Is it harmful for us? What are the effects upon us of this power working like this?
2. Forms of Fortune Telling
Consider for a moment some of the better known means of “telling the future”:
2.1 A medium in a seance
(See the page in this series on that.) This could involve the use of a crystal ball which still requires a “seer” to see the unknown.
2.2 Reading tea leaves
The assumption is that some force (or is it blind chance, and if so why should it be right?) creates a picture that gives us clues to what is coming.
2.3 Reading the cards
Again an assumption that some force (for again if it is blind chance why should it be right, it may just be one of a million possibilities) directs which cards come up.
2.4 Palm reading
Here the assumption is that one hand shows the person's destiny and the other how that has been modified by their life, that shape of the hands, lines on the hands etc. have somehow recorded this information like some form of human computer disk.
3. Common Features
3.1 Chance or?
If one is to deny that the facts of the leaves, cards or features is pure blind chance, we are only left with the conclusion that if they do tell the future then they are created by some power outside ourselves.
3.2 What is that power?
If it is pure chance that the leaves remain in a particular way, or the cards come in a particular order, then they have NO meaning whatsoever !
In each case there is also the whole question of interpretation . Who is to say the means of interpretation is true? Why is this person right? Would different people give different interpretations?
4. Two Possibilities:
When we think about these things, we must arrive at one of two possibilities:
• The “reading” is pure fraud and is simply the imagination of the so called “seer”.
• There is actually some force at work which brings a revelation of the future
5. What is the Power at Work?
5.1 Reasoning it out
Let's assume the second possibility for the moment. What force is there that can look from outside time and tell us the future?
To feel comfortable, we would prefer it to be some impersonal force, rather like gravity, that is neither good nor bad, but is that likely?
Seances and other forms of “interactive” guidance clearly indicate a personality that seeks to communicate. We must conclude we have a spiritual force at work here.
What spiritual forces are there? For the Christian the Bible is the text book of the truth, the only such book that stands under scrutiny.
The Bible declares that there is first of all God, who works for good, and good angels who work under His direction.
Then there are fallen or rebellious angels, otherwise called evil spirits or demons, the chief of which we call Satan or the devil. These are the ONLY forces at work in the spiritual realm
5.2 God or Satan?
Is it God who is showing us the future, or is it some other dark force opposed to Him. The answer probably depends on who it is you seek.
If you love God, He may speak to you (prophecy), but if not, you are only left with what the Bible calls “powers of darkness”.
5.3 What does the Bible say?
If you look at the page in this series on “Mediums and Seances” you will see a number of verses from the Bible that show that God is strictly against seeking out the future through mediums or divination (which is what fortune telling is), so whatever happens in fortune telling it WILL NOT be God!
5.4 But it seems to be true?
Remember we're left with only two possibilities: either it's pure chance or there is some occult force at work that knows you and your circumstances and may even be working in your life circumstances without your awareness.
5.5 But does that matter?
It matters if we understand the true nature of these powers at work. Jesus said that the devil was both a liar and a murderer (John 8:44). Those who look for help, encouragement and security through the means of fortune telling end up enmeshed in a web of fear, that some would say is superstition but others know has its origins in real evil.
The Bible also describes Satan as “an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14), one who often makes himself look good and his works harmless. Many have found that that is pure camouflage and the result of his works is deception and destruction.
“Fortune Telling” is not harmless. It leads people into a reliance upon half truths or lies and takes them away from God or confirms them in their godlessness.