[Papercut Press] 2005-05-30 - Horoscopes and Numerology

Summer Questions 2005, Question 3

Isaiah 47:12-15, Verse 12, "Stand fast now in your spells, and in your many sorceries with which you have labored from your youth; perhaps you will be able to profit, perhaps you may cause trembling."

Today's Question: "I understand God's command that we stay away from psychics and fortune telling and Ouija board and all of that, but when I have read my horoscope or gone to a web site that does numerology etc., the stuff linked to my birthday is quite often extraordinarily accurate. How can this be? Also, it says that God works in mysterious ways. So, why can't one of these methods be one of his mysterious ways to understanding ourselves and perhaps changing some things about us that aren't good and need to be changed?"

This question is one we have not hit on before--I don't think we have at least. I will admit at the start this is not an area where I can call myself a specialist. I have never had a reading, don't read my horoscope, and really don't know much about that kind of stuff. But Scripture gives us some principles, so we can go from there. The book of the Bible that seems to deal most with astrology stuff is Daniel. The passage cited above from Isaiah should not be miss-understood. It was written to us, but it was about the Babylonians, and the implication is rather cynical. God is saying, "Yea, maybe this stuff will work," but the implication is that there is no chance. The implication in the passage and context of the chapters is that the Babylonians can't trust astrology, and are fools to do so.

You are right, my friend, and I know you have been with us at CF Devotionals for a long time. I also know you are intelligent, because I have read many of your emails. I did some searching on this topic and it seems to me that horoscopes are often put in such general terms that they can apply to almost anyone. It makes sense that your horoscopes would seem like they apply to you. It seems to me that they are written in such a general way that if I read one of the horoscopes that was not mine, it would still apply to me.

You are right that God works in mysterious ways. However, I have to be honest here and say that Satan does also. We need to be wise, and really, and I feel like I am coming down really firm here, we need to seek our wisdom from Scripture. If we look to numerology or things of that nature to guide us, well, they will in general, but there is a better guide and that is God's Word. I feel like I am being strong here but I must, and not because you seem out of this world, as much as I don't know who will be reading this. There may be many who live and die by the astrology table. Your question is perfect. It is just my take, and since you asked the question, I think that we should guide things, and look more to how Scripture informs our lives, than other sources.

One of the great phrases of the old time Christians was a Latin phrase, Sola Scriptura. It means Scripture alone. I think we should seek to adopt this phrase in our lives. I am not saying that the casual reading of the fortune cookie, or checking our horoscope in the paper is wrong, and I bet they often are true in general, but our guiding light should be God's Word.

You are right, and I agree with you that God's ways are mysterious. If we are honest we can admit that God can use a piece of lint to make us rethink things. It is the work of the Spirit to help us work with our spirit to change our lives. So I am not saying that God can't use a horoscope, but I am just suggesting that there are better ways, and the first and foremost way I would suggest is Scripture.

Soli Deo Gloria,

[email tim] godrulestb@aol.com