What is witchcraft? What does the Bible say about it?

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Witchcraft is the practice of magic, especially black magic, and the use of spells and the invocation of spirits. The Bible clearly condemns and forbids all these activities and what is related to them because they rely on supernatural power that is not from God. For Satan can change himself into an angel of light to deceive people (2 Corinthians 11:14). The Bible records that the heathen nations practiced witchcraft in ancient Egypt (Exodus 7:11; Isaiah 19:3) and in Babylon (Jeremiah 27:9; Daniel 2:2). And God warned His children from adopting their practices.

In the OT, the Lord clearly lists witchcraft as one of the forbidden sins, “Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord, and because of these detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you” (Deuteronomy 18:10-12 also Leviticus 19:26). All occult activities are included. There is no such thing as “white magic.”

In 2 Chronicles 33:6, King Manasseh is condemned for his many evil practices and sorcery which includes witchcraft: “And he burned his sons as an offering in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, and used fortune-telling and omens and sorcery, and dealt with mediums and with necromancers. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD, provoking him to anger.”

The prophet Isaiah warns against mediums and wizards, “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?” (ch. 8:19). Since “the dead know not any thing” (Eccl. 9:5), it is obvious that they cannot be consulted, for evil spirits masquerade as the spirits of the dead to deceive the living. Also, Malachi the prophet speaks of God’s judgment on the sorcerers: “Then I will draw near to you for judgment. I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers” (Malachi 3:5).

In the NT, Paul lists sorcery as one of the sins of unbelievers: “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). And at the end of time, spiritual Babylon that opposes the truth, will deceive “all nations” with its sorcery (Revelation 18:23). But God’s judgments will fall on it and it “will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8 also Revelation 22:15).

In His service,

BibleAsk Team

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