Should Christians practice Lectio Divina?

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Lectio Divina (Latin for “Divine Reading”) is a traditional Catholic practice of scriptural reading, meditation, and prayer. In the 20th century, the Second Vatican Council recommended it to the general public and was later affirmed by Pope Benedict XVI at the start of the 21st century.

While Christians are encouraged to read the Bible, mediate, and pray, there are great dangers in the practice of Lectio Divina because it uses the beliefs of eastern religions, New Age, and other forbidden rituals. The focus point in such practices is on the believer’s need to “hear God’s voice,” in the mind but not through the scriptures.

Those that seek the supernatural approach to the Bible incline to separate its passages from its context and use them in a subjective and individualistic manner for which it was not planned. The result is, when one “clears his mind,” he is in reality opening his mind to demonic voices and not the Holy Spirit. Demons have supernatural powers that they use to lead people astray (1 Peter 5:8) for Satan can appear as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14).

Lectio is similar to Gnosticism, which teaches that a person must have a “gnosis” or a mystical knowledge based on subjective experiences rather than the objective approach of studying the Scriptures. The Word of God clearly forbids the use of mystical experiences to empower oneself.

The Holy Spirit speaks through God’s Word that has been given to us as the light the leads to righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Trusting in personal feelings is not Biblical for the believer must “walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). And “faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17).

All sorcery and divination (occult) were fully condemned in the Bible (1 Samuel 15:10) and for practicing these evils, the former Jewish nation was led into captivity and destroyed (2 Kings 17:17; Jeremiah 14:14; Malachi 3:5). The apostle Paul lists sorcery as one of many sinful practices that rob people from having eternal life: “Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife . . . and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21).

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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