Paranormal | Part 2 | Playing Spiritual Games 22 Oct 23

It’s all pretend, it’s all a game, it’s just for fun…. You may have heard this or even said this yourself after dabbling in something that may not actually be pretend, just a game, or innocent fun. In our message, “Paranormal – Playing Spiritual Games”, we take a look at Ouji, séances, and even the roots of Halloween. #GCParanormal

What Happens in the World of the Occult?

1. Obtaining information not available through normal means:

  • Astrology and horoscopes
  • Fortune telling (tarot cards, palm readers, psychics)
  • Ouija boards

2. Placing people in contact with supernatural powers, paranormal energies, or demonic forces:

  • Summoning up a spirit or deceased relative through a séance
  • Obtaining the services of someone claiming to be a medium

3. Attempting to gain power in order to manipulate people into certain actions:

  • Witchcraft & casting spells (Wicca)

 

History of Halloween:

  1. Celts celebrated Samhain (pronounced Saw-When)
  2. Romans – Pomona Day
  3. Catholic Church – All Saints Day
  4. Pope Gregory III (741 AD)
  5. Catholic Church (988 AD) – All Souls Day
  6. 1556 – All Hallows Eve (meaning Holy Evening)
  7. 1745 – pronounced “Halloween” in the English language

 

Rules lead to legalism.

Tools lead to liberty.

 

Toolbox Questions:

  1. Is my attitude and behavior reflecting a redeemed life in Jesus Christ?
  2. Is what I’m about to do something I need to receive, reject, or redeem?

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Start reading.

Key Scripture:

2 Corinthians 11:14–15 (NLT)

14 But I am not surprised! Even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 So it is no wonder that his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. In the end they will get the punishment their wicked deeds deserve.

1 Peter 5:8 (NLT)

8 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.

1 John 4:1 (NLT)

1 Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.

Deuteronomy 18:10–12 (NLT)

10 For example, never sacrifice your son or daughter as a burnt offering. And do not let your people practice fortune-telling, or use sorcery, or interpret omens, or engage in witchcraft, 11 or cast spells, or function as mediums or psychics, or call forth the spirits of the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD. It is because the other nations have done these detestable things that the LORD your God will drive them out ahead of you.

Isaiah 8:19 (NLT)

19 Someone may say to you, “Let’s ask the mediums and those who consult the spirits of the dead. With their whisperings and mutterings, they will tell us what to do.” But shouldn’t people ask God for guidance? Should the living seek guidance from the dead?

1 Samuel 28:3-15a (NLT)

Gen 3:1-5 (NLT)

Start talking. Find a conversation starter for your group.

  • Clay shared a story about an encounter with a demon. Have you ever had an experience with the demonic? How did you respond?

Start sharing. These questions are to help get your group thinking and to create openness.

  • Read 2 Corinthians 11:14-15 and 1 Peter 5:8. What do these verses reveal about the enemy?  How do we know if what we are experiencing is from God and not the demonic?(Ref 1 John 4:1)
  • Read Deuteronomy 18:10-12 and Isaiah 8:19. Who should be our primary source for guidance? Whom do you usually consult with when questions arise?
  • Read 1 Samuel 28:3-15a. Why do you think Saul sought out the Medium of Endor, despite his previous efforts to remove such individuals from the land? How do desperation or fear drive people to make bad choices counter to their beliefs?
  • Some people dabble in the occult because they want power and control. What are the dangers of seeking power outside of God’s will, as suggested by the temptation in the Garden of Eden? (See Gen 3:1-5).
  • Discuss Clay’s statement “Rules lead to legalism, tools lead to liberty.” Do you agree? Why or why not?
  • How can Christians discern between harmless traditions and spiritually harmful practices during holidays like Halloween? How might Christians use Halloween as an opportunity for outreach or to display the love of Christ?
  • Discuss the two “Toolbox Questions:” Is my attitude and behavior reflecting a redeemed life in Jesus Christ? Is what I’m about to do something I need to Receive, Reject, or Redeem?

Start doing. Commit to a step and live it out this week.

  • Apply the two Toolbox Questions to the cultural practices and traditions in which you currently participate.

Start praying. Be bold and pray with power.

  • Father God, please help us to discern how to engage with the world with both salt and light, truth and grace; to be in the world, but not of it. Forgive us where we fall short and help us to repent, seeking only your guidance and the power that flows only from acting in your will. In Jesus’ mighty name, Amen.

Start digging. For further study.

Speaker

Clay Weed

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