Oprah’s mantra “find your own spirit” has become the rally cry of many Americans. The media, our friends, family — and unfortunately, even some pulpits — challenge us to “find our inner strength.”
These words might seem harmless to you, even encouraging and uplifting, but the truth is that these messages have their roots in the New Age Movement…a movement that is a very real danger to you and your family.
It starts by not being able to recognize Satan’s deceptive strategy.
Perhaps you envision him wearing a red cape and carrying a pitchfork…someone who really doesn’t affect your life. If so, he has you thinking exactly what he wants you to think! The devil is deceptive and charming — a wolf in sheep’s clothing. And one of his greatest disguises is in the New Age Movement. Yet, many don’t even realize it!
Do you recognize Satan’s influence in your life? Are you drawn to television shows such as the WB’s Charmed, which depicts the lives of three sisters who happen to be spell-casting witches? Or do your children watch Disney’s That’s So Raven in which the teen heroine has visions?
The popularity of the New Age Movement expressed in a cloak of spirituality is greater than ever…and it means you and I need to arm ourselves with God’s truth. We need to be able to recognize false spirituality — and teach our children about these dangers.
For instance, what comes to mind when you think of New Age? Do you think of palm readers, crystal balls, journeys to Tibet to visit the Dalai Lama, Scientology? While all of these things are a part of New Age, this movement infiltrates our society in many other subtle and devious ways.
The New Age is expressed in simple meditation…or self-help seminars…even in holistic medicine. These things seem harmless, yet they possess dangerous spiritual pitfalls that can snare even the most innocent people.
What is the danger? New Age followers use all of these things as a means of channeling their inner energy and spirit to learn to rely on themselves, not on God.
For many people, the appeal of the New Age Movement is that there are no moral absolutes. What is right for me might not be right for you, but that’s okay because we are really all the same — we all are gods.
This belief system also gives people a false feeling of control over their own lives. Since Adam, Eve, Cain, and Abel, man has struggled to gain control over himself and his world. The New Age Movement leads people to believe they have this control.
So how do we communicate God’s truth in a society disillusioned by Satan’s lies? The Christian’s response must be threefold.
1. We must know what we believe about God and the tenets of our Christian faith.
2. We must communicate God’s truth…the Gospel…with conviction, yet love.
We must practice God’s truth. God calls us to “walk the walk and talk the talk.” “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this...to keep oneself from being polluted by the world” (James 1:27).
Marriage is God’s idea. He designed it. And if you follow His blueprint, it will be more rewarding, more loving, and more exciting than you ever imagined. In his book 10 Commandments of Marriage, Dr. Ed Young shares the “thou shalts” and “thou shalt nots” of successful relationships – straight from the pages of the Bible.