The Fringe Files: topics that are edgy and out of this world.
There’s a new trend among young folks.
Actually, it’s not new at all. It’s as old as time itself.
And it’s just as dangerous as it’s always been.
Since Halloween happens in October, I feel led to address the dangers of interacting with demons in the spirit realm.
Walk in any bookstore or library and in the teen section you’ll find shelves overflowing with books dealing with the paranormal. And it’s not just the Teen or Young Adult/Adult bookshelves anymore. These books are abundant for all age groups. Kids and teens are hungry for the supernatural. Unfortunately, to satiate their appetites for the paranormal, they’re drawn into dangerous realms that God very much wants to protect them from.
According to the Barna Research Group, 73% of teens admit to participating in some kind of psychic or witchcraft activity. And:
“…seven million teens have encountered an angel, demon, or some other supernatural being. More than two million teens say they have communicated with a dead person (10%). Nearly two million youth claim they have psychic powers.” — David Kinnaman, author of the Barna Group report
Young people (and people in general) are exposed to more supernatural hype and temptation than ever before via technology and media. One click and they can participate in a seance, cast a spell, watch a paranormal movie. These things shape their belief systems. They feed the yearning they have (and don’t recognize) for intimacy with God.
The spiritual vacuum in all of us longs to be filled. We know instinctively that there is more than what we experience in this world. From the beginning of time, though, the enemy–Satan–has known this, and has exploited our longing by offering cheap counterfeit experiences. (I’m going to be writing more about the history of demons, giants and so forth in coming weeks. Stay tuned.)
One popular activity these days is a a so-called game going viral via social media (twitter, YouTube, et. al.) called the Charlie Charlie Challenge. In this game, kids make a spinner out of two pencils then write “yes” and “no” on four quadrants of a paper. They ask if a demon named Charlie would like to play and wait for the pencils to move in an answer. It works similar to a Ouija board. They film themselves doing this and then tweet about it or post it on their blogs and YouTube.
While this may seem like a harmless past time, and several websites claim that gravity is all that moves the pencils, it’s much more than child’s play. Christians and worshipers of the One True God are forbidden to communicate with the dead or any other-worldly entities of any kind. Yahweh, warns us in His Word:
“Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord, and because of these detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you” (Deuteronomy 18:10-12, NIV).
“Do not practice divination or sorcery” (Leviticus 19:26).
The reason God doesn’t want us to communicate with spirits isn’t because He is a mean old God who doesn’t know how to have fun. On the contrary, He doesn’t want us to in order to protect us. Ephesians 4:27 warns us: “do not give the devil a foothold.” When you invite a spirit into your life, you are doing exactly that. You are giving them permission to hang around. And be warned: they do not have your best interest in mind. They hate you. They despise you because you are what they can never be: created in the image of God.
“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Genesis 1:27).
There is no such thing as a friendly or playful spirit. They have no access to the promises of God, and God is their enemy. For this reason they will do all they can to destroy you because you are the apple of God’s eye. If you invite one spirit, they will likely bring others along, too. And yes, they may appear friendly (as in a spirit guide sort of way) but I assure you, they are not. They are no different than a charming serial killer. Friendly at first, but in time, will turn on you.
This Halloween and always, be smart not stupid. Ask for Jesus to protect you. If you long for the supernatural, invite Jesus into your life. He longs to be your friend.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11).