Greetings precious people. In todayís article we will be looking at a subject that has grown substantially over the past few years, that of Astrology. Astrology is often confused with Astronomy. They are quite a bit different. Astronomy is the science of the stars, planets, and all other heavenly bodies, dealing with their composition, motion, relative position, size, etc. Astrology is a pseudo science claiming to foretell the future by studying the supposed influence of the relative positions of the moon, sun, and stars on human affairs. Astronomy is valid and genuine where Astrology is false and potentially dangerous.
The Bible, Godís Word, has much to say against the practice and acceptance of Astrology. God had revealed Himself to His people the Israelites through His Prophets and His Word. Thus setting the standard by which anyone wanting to know the truth and direction for their life. Through His Word and the Prophets, God gave the Israelites clear direction for their life and future. They did not need to look any further than His Word for purpose and direction.
Those that knew not God Almighty tried in vain to find purpose and direction for their life through a number of different means. Some looked to various man made gods, others to animals or stones, while still others looked to the stars and planets. Tragically, many of Godís people followed the practice of those around them and forsook the truth and began to follow after a lie. In part, the lie that they followed after was that of Astrology. We read this account of Godís rebuke to His people in the Book of Isaiah. In Isaiah 47:8-14, "Therefore hear this now, you who are given to pleasures, Who dwell securely, Who say in your heart, 'I am, and there is no one else besides me; I shall not sit as a widow, Nor shall I know the loss of children'; But these two things shall come to you In a moment, in one day: The loss of children, and widowhood. They shall come upon you in their fullness Because of the multitude of your sorceries, For the great abundance of your enchantments. "For you have trusted in your wickedness; You have said, 'No one sees me'; Your wisdom and your knowledge have warped you; And you have said in your heart, 'I am, and there is no one else besides me.' Therefore evil shall come upon you; You shall not know from where it arises. And trouble shall fall upon you; you will not be able to put it off. And desolation shall come upon you suddenly, Which you shall not know. "Stand now with your enchantments and the multitude of your sorceries, In which you have labored from your youth--Perhaps you will be able to profit, Perhaps you will prevail. You are wearied in the multitude of your counsels; Let now the astrologers, the stargazers, and the monthly prognosticators stand up and save you from what shall come upon you. Behold, they shall be as stubble, The fire shall burn them; They shall not deliver themselves From the power of the flame; It shall not be a coal to be warmed by, Nor a fire to sit before!"
Notice what God links Astrology to, sorcery which is witchcraft involving the use of drugs and other occultic practices. How foolish it is for man to look to the creation of God rather than the Creator of all things for direction and purpose to life. The creation of God can only tell us of the glory of God. Psalm 19:1 tells us, "The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork." Godís Creation can tell us that God has a purpose and plan for our life, but it cannot tell us what His purpose and plan is for our lives. Only God through His Word and the Holy Spirit can do that.
This is clearly seen in an account given to us in the Book of Daniel. Daniel had been taken captive to Babylon along with a number of other Israelites. The king of Babylon was a man by the name of Nebuchadnezzar. He relied heavily upon Astrology as well as magic, soothsaying, and other occultic practices for direction. In fact, it is believed that many of these practices including Astrology, had their origin in ancient Babylon.
One day king Nebuchadnezzar had a dilemma, he had had a dream the night before that troubled him and he could not figure out its meaning. Listen to the account given to us in Daniel 2:1-13, "Now in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar's reign, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; and his spirit was so troubled that his sleep left him. Then the king gave the command to call the magicians, the astrologers, the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans to tell the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king. And the king said to them, "I have had a dream, and my spirit is anxious to know the dream." Then the Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic, "O king, live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will give the interpretation." The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, "My decision is firm: if you do not make known the dream to me, and its interpretation, you shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made an ash heap. However, if you tell the dream and its interpretation, you shall receive from me gifts, rewards, and great honor. Therefore tell me the dream and its interpretation." They answered again and said, "Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will give its interpretation." The king answered and said, "I know for certain that you would gain time, because you see that my decision is firm: if you do not make known the dream to me, there is only one decree for you! For you have agreed to speak lying and corrupt words before me till the time has changed. Therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that you can give me its interpretation." The Chaldeans answered the king, and said, "There is not a man on earth who can tell the king's matter; therefore no king, lord, or ruler has ever asked such things of any magician, astrologer, or Chaldean. It is a difficult thing that the king requests, and there is no other who can tell it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh." For this reason the king was angry and very furious, and gave a command to destroy all the wise men of Babylon. So the decree went out, and they began killing the wise men; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them."
Notice that these phonies were given a task that seemed impossible and it was, except for God Almighty. They were proven once again to be incapable of doing anything that called for real wisdom and insight. Astrology and all the other occultic practices have shown themselves to deal only in generalities and failed in specifics time and time again in our day as well.
Tragically, people by the thousands continue to look to the stars rather than to the one that created them for direction. A recent article on the Fox news network gives some indication of the popularity of astrology. NEW YORK ó The Times Square ball may have dropped, but many people are still looking up to the stars for guidance in 2003. While some make New Year's resolutions, year-ahead astrological predictions are a must-read for many people. Susan Anapol, 44, a Scorpio, said she swears by magazine horoscopes and even calls the phone number listed for more astrological guidance (spending about $20 per call). "I write down the weekly horoscope information I get on the phone," she said. "It's frightening how true it all is." Kelli Fox, founder of astrology.com, said astrology is "unbelievably popular" today and her Web site is a reflection of this. Her daily horoscopes are e-mailed out to millions all over the world. "We're very busy in January," she said. "People are looking for the year-ahead information, people want to be guided." Susan Miller, astrologer and author of The Year Ahead 2003, said annual guides are popular because they "tell you where you've been, where you are now and some of the possible routes for the future." Jennifer George, a devotee to Miller who consults her site often, uses predictions to help guide her daily decisions. "I think everybody is looking for answers," George, 31, said in a phone interview from Petaluma, Calif. "I used to purely look at it for entertainment, but recently I've been looking at it more seriously. If you take the points that she lays out and actually make notes in your daily planner, it helps you go through the month in a more aware way."
It is truly unfortunate when a person or a group of people turns from the truth and embrace lies. The Word of God describes this well and its repercussions. In Jeremiah 2:5, "Thus saith the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain?" How empty people become when they turn from the true and living God and embrace vanity.
If you have made this error in your life I implore you to repent and return to the Creator of the Universe. Forsake looking to the stars and planets for purpose and direction and look instead to the one that spoke them into existence.
If you have any questions, comments, or prayer requests you can contact me at: Calvary Chapel of Alpine, P.O. Box 1528, Alpine, Ca. 91903 or call 619-445-2589, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Drew Macintyre is pastor of Calvary Chapel of Alpine