What a great book this was!….. It was engaging from the start and filled with important information that the church of today needs to know.

Here is something I learned.

You know those psychics who do readings and know certain things about you? They guess your brothers name or say they know that your grandmothers favorite color was lilac. Often they are right.  Or how about this… they know your boyfriend is going to ask you to marry you.  How does this work? I mean how do they know these things about our personal lives.  Well they don’t know, but others do.

Others? What Others?

The more I learn about contemplative prayer the more alarmed I become.  CP is being introduced into the church in the most subtle of ways at times, then sometimes it seems it is almost flaunted in the church’s face. Both methods of introduction are dangerous. When unbiblical practices are slowly integrated into Christianity people do not seem to notice. When a trusted church leader promotes a new way to worship without questioning it himself, the people just follow. The reason the church doesn’t know enough to question these new practices is that they are not familiar enough with the Bible.

At some point in time, all Christians will have to decide for themselves, whether or not they want to follow this emerging mysticism in our churches today. Willl they even recognize it when it comes upon them? Will there be no personal decisions made because Christians are not even aware these decisions are being made for them behind the scenes? This is the large question looming in my mind.

In his book, “Running against the Wind” Brian Flynn tells the story of a course he took in mind control. It was offered as a way to be a pyschic reader. After six months of preparation and meditations his teacher told the class:

“Starting tonight we will begin to identify and later come to know your spirit guides–the ones who will assist you in your readings. With your eyes closed, imagine an open doorway standing in front of you. Now, silently within your mind, ask the first guide to step in front of the door and reveal him or herself.”

Brian now explains how the spirits emerge:

“At first, as I stared at the doorway, I saw only blackness. Then a moment later, a large figure appeared looking similar to a Viking or medieval soldier. He looked tough, strong and somewhat intimidating….The next to appear was a very meek looking woman with a warm smile. After her there came a smoke-like vapor rising from the floor. (pg.65)

The teacher continued:

“Allow each one to appear before the door so that you become familiar with them…..stop analyzing it all, and just trust your feelings. The more you let go, the more you will be open to the spirit guides’ abilities to teach you what you need to know.” (pg.67)

These are the “others” mentioned earlier.  These are the spirit guides that many have evoked from another spiritual realm by deep meditation and visualization.

How is it that we can rely on God alone if we have “spirit guides” to teach us what we need to know.  The answer is that we will not rely on God or read the Bible for the truth on how to live our lives for the Lord.

We are NOT to delve into this spirit world. It is forbidden in the Bible. Divination is a means for extracting information or guidance from a pagan god which is a demon. Therefore, divination is occult.

What does occult mean? Occult is supernatural or hidden powers that are NOT from God. Seeking information or guidance from this source is dangerous. The New Age is occult through and through and so is ANY means or methods to obtain this occult knowledge.

Here is why this is forbidden. 

Deuteronomy 18:10-12: “There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.  For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD…”

“A consulter with familiar spirits.” Why would we as Christians need to consult with these spirits. WE DO NOT. We have the Holy Spirit. Why in the world would we settle for anything when we already have the real thing. The “others” are counterfeits.

Brian talks about his personal life while all of this is going on:

Rarely a day passed that we didn’t fight about always ended with vicious personal attacks. At times I thought i was losing my mind. I had this feeling of being stirred up like someone else was saying those cruel words to Hailey…Instead I had put all my hopes on the universe or some lucky break that would lead us to wealth…I couldn’t help but feel betrayed by them (spirit guides) though…I trusted them to guide me and they guided me right to bankruptcy court.   (pg 70)

Here Brian talks about a situation when he started truly considering Jesus as the Son of God.

“The voices of my guides were constantly ringing in my head…I had never felt this type of resistance or opposition from my guides……The reason they were resisting me was because they were opposed to Him. They hated Jesus….They did not want me to become a Christian because they were not of God. Satan in his attempt to keep me where I was, revealed who he was…the identity of my guides were revealed.” (pg.84)

Wow! Brian did learn the truth for the Lord opened his eyes.

It is fascinating when someone who has come out of the New Age and who has accepted Jesus Christ as savior, finds similarities in both New Age and Emergent church techniques.

Here is an exerpt:

“If you are not a New Ager but rather a Christian, you may be in for the surprise of your life because this very New Age movement I speak of has and is now infiltrating the Christian church at a rapid and alarming rate. And you can imagine my horror when I left the New Age movement only to find the very same techniques and practices I literally ran from, were waiting patiently for me in the church pews, pulpits and bookstores of the church. Oh, it isn’t called the New Age movement–names have been changed. But as a rose by any other name is just as sweet so too is the New Age movement by any other name just as deviant and dangerous. And there’s a very good chance it has already entered your church, your college and even your home.”  (pg. 89)

Contemplative prayer may sound quite lovely or innocent and in some instances it may be, but if you are reading books by Brian McLaren, Dallas Willard, Richard Foster, Brennan Manning, Matthew Fox, or Tony Campolo, (just to name a few), you may be opening yourself up to deception. Most of these authors all tow-the-line for the mysticism of meditation and use such terms as sacred space, inner space, breath prayer, inner silence, into the silence, be still, turning off the mind, etc.  This list goes on and on. But repetition  of phrases is almost always used, which is just a form of meditation. It is no different than eastern meditation no matter what word is used.

Brian tell us this:

“Jesus told us not to use vain repetitions as…the heathen do. Jesus tell us the heathen who pray this way, do so because they think this type of prayer will more likely be heard and responded to. He then tells us not to be like them because our Heavenly Father already knows what we need before we even ask Him.” (pg. 171)

Contrast this with a quote from Brennan Manning:

“The first step in faith is to stop thinking about God at the time of prayer..Choose a single, sacred word…repeat the sacred word inwardly, slowly, and often.”

Can’t you see what is happening here? Manning is asking you to forget about God and to speak repetitions as the heathen do.  

This next excerpt will be my last as I want you to buy the book and read it for yourself. There is just so much in it….but please ponder this……

“If contemplative prayer or other Eastern practices were sanctioned or blessed by God of the Bible, why are there no stories of any Hindus or Buddists coming to Christ by these methods. Instead we hear of Christians receiving revelations during contemplative prayer that all paths lead to God and that God is in all.” (pg 171)

Good question. It seems that all revelations that are being received by occult means are very similar in nature.  Remember that theosophy or the divine wisdom of the “ascended masters” revealed the same message.  That we are God, that we are divine.  This is most certainly not true.  The Divine One is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Do not open yourself to the occult powers by engaging in occult methods. If you use occult methods expect occult results. All “revelations” need to be compared against God’s word and tested because we are to test these things. These spirit guides are not of God which means they are unholy. At first they will deceive you by their friendly appearance and neutral suggestions. But Brian said they eventually revealed themselves as from Satan. 

Trust in God only. The Son of God is Jesus Christ and you can know Him by simply praying to Him as he taught in the Bible. Once you receive Him into your life by repenting your sin and believing only in Him, you will be indwelled by the Holy Spirit. There is no need to search anywhere else but the Bible. His Word will guide, lead, comfort, and encourage you daily.

I want to thank Brian Flynn for writing this book and for bravely sharing so much of his personal experiences.