“But have nothing to do with worldly fables…” (I Timothy 4:7)

Discussion in 'Forum for Polls' started by Alcott, Aug 10, 2009.

?

Which of these activities are forbidden by I Timothy 4:7?

  1. Reading horoscopes

    6 vote(s)
    66.7%
  2. Allowing palm or tea leaf readers to tell you your fortune

    7 vote(s)
    77.8%
  3. Reading “fortunes” from fortune cookies, weight machines (if there still are any),…

    3 vote(s)
    33.3%
  4. None of the above 3 are forbidden if you read/do them just for ‘fun’

    1 vote(s)
    11.1%
  5. Consulting a psychic/fortune teller

    8 vote(s)
    88.9%
  6. Playing a “lucky number” someone/something has told you is yours

    7 vote(s)
    77.8%
  7. Believing information not available to you that you dreamed about

    4 vote(s)
    44.4%
  8. Believing warts will result from handling a frog

    7 vote(s)
    77.8%
  9. Believing cold or wet weather will give you a viral disease [cold, flu,…]

    5 vote(s)
    55.6%
  10. As a sports fan, joining a chant such as “Mojo!”

    3 vote(s)
    33.3%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Alcott

    Alcott
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2002
    Messages:
    7,454
    Likes Received:
    93
    Inspired by another thread about astrology, which of these activities do you think are forbidden by this biblical admonition?
     
  2. Johnv

    Johnv
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    21,321
    Likes Received:
    0
    1 Timothy 4:7 has to do with one's heart, not simply one's actions. Simply reading a horoscope or fortune cookie is not forbidden. Putting faith in them, however, is forbidden.

    I once got a fortune cookie that read "you will inhierit a large sum of money". I still have that fortune on my monitor at work. It's been there for about 10 years now. Still waiting.
     
  3. Marcia

    Marcia
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Messages:
    11,139
    Likes Received:
    0
    I didn't vote for any because
    1. Many Bible scholars are not sure which false teachings are being referred to here but they are not occult practices, which is what you listed
    2. Most likely these false teachings that Paul was warning Timothy about were early forms of Gnosticism

    The occult practices listed about are forbidden in the Bible - not just doing them but consulting those who do them (divination, which is like fortunetelling; mediums; spiritism; sorcery). The problem today is that these things are around but people often don't recognize them for what they are.
     
    #3 Marcia, Aug 11, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 11, 2009
  4. Alcott

    Alcott
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2002
    Messages:
    7,454
    Likes Received:
    93
    I have considered what you say here, and I may end up admitting that I have long had a pre-conceived notion about this verse which might not be true, or not completely true. But I have used it and quoted it in regard to occultism/spiritism because of its blanket forbiddance ["have nothing to do with..."]. I don't know of another NT verse which says it that strongly about the practices. Divination is mentioned [Simon, the girl at Philippi] and what they do is obviously condemned by the apostles they encounter; and many who had practiced 'magic' at Ephesus burned their valuable books.

    I have also long held the principle, though, that it is/was quite an expected consequence of nature that these things developed. Astrology, for instance-- the stars change positions on an annual basis and relative to one's position on earth, while the planets 'roam' among the 'fixed stars.' Thus, the positions of the stars is related to earthy events. We are just about to the "dog days of summer," in which Sirius (the dog star) is visible as the sun rises. This always occurs at the same time of the year. And then the relationship between the moon and the tides-- this is where it is entirely true that a heavenly body influences earthly happenings, as the moon pulls the waters toward it by gravity, rising certain parts of the oceans. So I think it is natural that ancient people, with no knowledge of science, extended these observable phenomena to more than the observable. And numbers... the specialness of 3 is that it takes 3 points to form a plane; a stool to sit on, for example; you can sit on one with 3 legs, but not on one with just 2. And 7... that's a special number because if you have 7 congruent circles, you can put one in the middle and the other 6 tuching the middle one and each adjacent circle (you can try this with coins). So 7 'completes' a unique set with one among 7 in a special place/position. Does some of this sound biblical and not anti-biblical?

    So without a blanket condemnation, where actually is a biblical cutoff between 'special' numbers and lucky numbers, between observing heavenly bodies as they relate to earth and relating them in more ways then the observable? Are the magi who came to Bethelehem to be condemned because of their very name [root of 'magic'] and their astrology? as I find nothing in scripture to relate an anomalous star to the messiah's birth until they did it with a practice otherwise associated with sorcery.
     
  5. Marcia

    Marcia
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Messages:
    11,139
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think using this passage in regards to occult practices is taking it out of context. There is nothing in the context to suggest divination or other practices. It seems that if this is what was in view, those terms would have been mentioned.

    The strongest condemnations are in the OT. There was no need to repeat these in the NT because the OT is seen as scripture. Same thing with homosexuality - most condemnation is in the OT with a few passages in the NT (especially Romans).

    As you say, there is reference to divination in Acts 16, and to burning books of magic in Acts 18. There is the false prophet and magician Elymas who is made blind "for a time" in Acts 13 (I wrote a paper on that), and denunciations of sorcery in Revelation. There are also references to what may be seen as part of astrological worship of deities in the sky in Acts 7:42, which references back to a passage in Hosea (chapter 6, I think).


    This is all astronomy and science, what you mention here. Astrology and Astronomy were one and the same in the ancient world - they observed the planets (which they thought were stars), how fast they moved, their positions, etc. and they also gave a meaning to them and the relationship to earth. But this had little to do with science - saying Mars brings war is not scientific. They may have observed Mars in prominent positions (of course, it was not Mars for the Babylonians - they had another name) during times of war and they made this (false) connection. Astrology at this point was only for rulers and kings. As astrology developed for the individual in Greece (wealthy ones), it took on more personal meaning. It wasn't until the late 1800s that astrology, being influenced by Freud and psychology, took on even more meaning for people. Nowadays, a chart reading is almost like a psychology session, except it's based on the false data and interpretation of the astrology birth chart.


    What you are talking about is geometry, I think, or at least some form of mathematics. This is not numerology.

    The cutoff is when there is esoteric meaning in a number, pattern, or planet and its position. Saying Mars is now located at such and such a degree in the sky is astronomy. Saying that having it there next to Pluto in your chart means you have hidden deep anger, is astrology. It's when you give a meaning to it that you cross the line into occultism.

    The magi were thought to be special advisers to rulers who knew medicine, astronomy/astrology, dream interpretation, etc. I do not think astrology was used in leading them to Christ because following a star to a specific place is not astrology - it's supernatural astronomy (many Bible scholars and commentators believe the star was supernatural and was the Shekinah, which makes the most sense to me biblically speaking). The star first led them to Herod and it seems only they saw it. And then the star "stood over" the place where Jesus was - this is impossible for any heavenly body. And the pagan Magic astrologers are the first ones recorded to worship Jesus! This shows how God would reach to the Gentiles.

    I wrote something on this here:
    http://christiananswersforthenewage.org/AboutCANA_FAQs1.html
     
  6. EdSutton

    EdSutton
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2006
    Messages:
    8,755
    Likes Received:
    0
    What about the wholesale statement found in Eph. 5:11 about these 'unfruitful works of darkness'?
    Seems clear enough, and even more widely inclusive, for that matter.

    Ed
     
  7. Alcott

    Alcott
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2002
    Messages:
    7,454
    Likes Received:
    93
    "Unfruitful works of darkness?" Would that include planting onions at midnight with no moon out? No fruit; no light.
     
  8. Johnv

    Johnv
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    21,321
    Likes Received:
    0
    BWAAAA HAAA! I just spit out my iced tea!! Since the verse says "have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness", can one therefore have fellowship with fruitful works of darkness? :wavey:


    I think these passages tend to get "picked and chosen", in the same manner that people refer to homosexuality being an abomination, but usually don't refer to a lying tongue or a proud heart equally being an abomination.
     
    #8 Johnv, Aug 13, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2009
  9. Thinkingstuff

    Thinkingstuff
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2008
    Messages:
    8,169
    Likes Received:
    0
    What about offering food to idols that was a pagan practice. Still practiced to day in Vietnam, China, Japan, and the rest of the Asian east.
     
  10. Marcia

    Marcia
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Messages:
    11,139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Many would point to the Corinthians passage about food being offered to idols - if it hurts your brother's conscience, don't eat it. But the situation then in pagan Rome and Corinth and other places was that that was the only way you could get meat. That is why some stopped eating it.

    I am sure that if you are in Vietnam, China, Japan, etc., you can get food not offered to idols. Personally, no I wouldn't want it, especially if I could get other food.

    But eating food is different from actually practicing the occult or consulting someone who does.

    In the beginning chapters of Revelation, some of the churches were rebuked for eating food offered to idols - other parts of the passages suggest they may have been actually participating in pagan feasts (this is what one commentary said). At the end of Revelation, who is outside the heavenly city? Idolaters, sorcerers, liars, among others:

    Also, take a look at Isaiah 47 (the whole chapter).
     
  11. Enow

    Enow
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2009
    Messages:
    135
    Likes Received:
    0
    I didn't vote on any either, but I do know of the reference to fables that turn away from the truth.

    The Books of Enoch.

    From it, believers are led astray in believing that angels were the sons of God mingling with the daughters of men, but Jesus said that angels are neither marrying nor given in marriage. He said this in reference to the power of God towards the resurrection. Now what boast is the power of God or the resurrection if angels can marry? What boast in the Word of God if kinds can beget other kinds as in man with animals as angels with man? It cannot happen because God said so.

    The Books of Enoch have other errors too. The descriptions of the many heavens sounds too much like Dante's hell. Reads like poetic licensing was being taken place here as these frauds were being produced.

    The Book of Enoch also has a placed reserved as punishment for creation that did not form or appear at their appointed time, BUT....

    Isaiah 55:So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

    Can you imagine the doubts that would create towards those saved? If His Word does not perform what He spoke in creation, what about redemption?

    The Book of Enoch also has a place reserved for punishing evil.... BUT

    John 3:13And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.

    God took Enoch, but it is not written where.

    Genesis 5: 24And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

    We know where God did not take him to;

    1 Coirinthians 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

    So how can evil be punished in heaven?

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The Books of Enoch were incorporated at one time into the Codex or a collection of books for the Bible in certain areas, but earlier Bibles did not have it. The fables eventually got worked in by popularity until the Word of God exposed it as frauds, and it was taken out.

    Some are using the reference to Enoch in Jude as if referencing a Book. Scriptures has referenced Moses... is there a Book of Moses? Yes, Moses did pen by the Holy Spirit events before the Flood which goes to show the necessity due to the lack of records before the Flood. For a nation of people that is starting, now would be the time for their roots to be written down. Indeed, as there are Jewish fables, one can understand why the scribes would not keep them up for they were not the Word of God. The contents alone is contrary to the Word of God.

    Are there not Greek mythology and Norse mythology of "gods" mingling with men? Then truly, any "christian" or "Jewish" fable in that same format is of man, and not from the Lord.

    The references to the sons of God in Job had Job being pointed out each time the sons of God were presenting themselves to the Lord in 1st and 2nd Job. The fact that these books are written to show the lineage of God's chosen people is a point of pride to the Israelites of their origins. And the New Testament will testify to that as well:

    Luke 3:38Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    There are also modern day fables that has derived from such belief that angels or rather fallen angels can mingles with the daughters of men.

    The Serpent Seed doctrine slandering Eve as the first adulterer by having sired Cain by mingling with Satan, was derived from obscurity in the way God cursed Adam, Eve, and Satan in Genesis. In spite of the fact of the written word of Adam knowing his wife Eve in producing Cain afterwards, this fable has it going towards the line of Cain known as the Kenites: rationalizing how they survived the Flood when only eight souls were saved by water in that Noah grabbed two of each "kind" of humans on the ark besides his family. They try to show that Jesus cursing the Pharisees for being of the devil was to prove that the Pharisees were of the Kenites, exposing them as not being real Jews when Jesus was just referring to the sin of lying and the sin of murder as being of the devil... not to Cain being the murderer from the beginning. When Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, they were murdered, poisoned to a slow death, but that was murder committed by the devil.

    Anyway, wayward believers are losing themselves in these fables as if they have secret knowledge or secret revelation that can only be shown to "true" seekers of the Word... and yet it edifies us not in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. In reality, it takes away the power of His spoken Word as well as the written word and thus these are the fables that turn away from the truth.
     
  12. luke1616

    luke1616
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Messages:
    216
    Likes Received:
    0
    Psychology is a false teaching.
     
  13. billwald

    billwald
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2000
    Messages:
    11,414
    Likes Received:
    0
    >Simply reading a horoscope or fortune cookie is not forbidden. Putting faith in them, however, is forbidden.

    Doesn't quite compute because Christianity invented thought crimes. For example, wishing someone would die of natural causes is OK as long as one doesn't speed the process?
     

Share This Page

Loading...