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What does the Bible say about extrasensory perception (ESP)?


The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines extrasensory perception (ESP) as perception (telepathy, clairvoyance, and precognition) that involves awareness of information about events external to the self not gained through the senses and not deducible from previous experience. All Psychic abilities (intuition, sixth sense, Telepathy, Psychometry, clairaudience… etc.) can be grouped under ESP.

The Bible and Extrasensory Perception (ESP)?

The Bible states that there are Satanic angels and powers that are superior to men in intelligence as well as in evil cunning. These spirits are in open rebellion against God and against His children. Paul explained, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).

God warns His children from contacting these Satanic spiritual entities for wisdom and power through mediums: “‘Give no regard to mediums and familiar spirits; do not seek after them, to be defiled by them: I am the Lord your God” (Leviticus 19:31). For Satan inspires the words of a spirit medium in harmony with his own purposes.

To protect His children from these wicked spirits, the Lord commanded in ancient Israel that, “‘A man or a woman who is a medium, or who has familiar spirits, shall surely be put to death; they shall stone them with stones. Their blood shall be upon them” (Leviticus 20:27).

The prophet Isaiah alerts God’s people, “And when they say to you, “Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,” should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living? To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:19,20). Thus, the Word of God is the standard of truth and the guide to right living. Whatever men may speak that is not in harmony with that Word has “no light” in it (Isaiah 50:10, 11).

In the New Testament, Paul alarms the believers against these Satanic spirits and their human mediums saying, “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15).

Seek God for Wisdom

God the Father is the source of every good quality (James 1:17; 1 Peter 4:10). Jesus Himself affirms, “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come” (John 16:13).

The Lord promises to help His children and guide them to all the truth through His Holy Spirit and not through extrasensory perception (ESP). He assures, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5).

The Final Deception

Paul warns: “In later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons” (1 Timothy 4:1). Modern spiritualism and ESP, a prominent example of the “doctrines of devils,” is simply a revival of the demon worship and witchcraft of the past. Its seductive influence will finally sweep the world, Christian and non-Christian alike, and usher the way for Satan’s final great deception – the appearance of the Antichrist.

Therefore the Lord urges His children to, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). The apostle warns his readers about the devil’s operations, but reminds them that God has not left them to their own human resources. Therefore, instead of relying on mystical, psychic powers such as extrasensory perception (ESP), believers ought to rely on God’s wisdom and power which are given freely and generously to all that seek it by faith.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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