The influence of the occult upon our everyday lives is staggering. An African missionary from the Mandinka tribe of West Africa once asked a congregation a question similar to that the Apostle Paul of the Galatians requested. I can still recall his 11-minute message, spoken in the mid-’90s, as he shouted the question: “You foolish Americans… who has bewitched you?!”

The basis of his message was that, right here in the good ole U.S. of A., he could detect an occult influence everywhere he looked. Whether it was through the media, commercials, the “alternative religions,” or even from the pulpits of well-meaning Christian ministers, this man detected something OTHER than the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

NewsCrystals, guided imagery, healing meditation, Christian Science, Kabbalah, Mormonism…why has “Christian America” so eagerly accepted these ideas that, at their root, are so contrary to that which would be considered orthodox? Why are so many things OTHER than biblical concepts being sought out to meet the needs of those who claim to be Christians?

In 2 Corinthians, 11th chapter, the Apostle warned that some would preach “another Jesus” and “a different gospel.” He wrote, “…as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity in Christ.” Three types of doctrine are spoken of within the New Testament: the doctrine of man, devils, and Christ (and of God).

I contend that Bible illiteracy is the basis for this continual weakening of Orthodox Christianity. One example of this can be found in the number of Southern Baptists joining the Mormon Church. According to the Arizona Latter-day Sentinel, April 2, 1988, “…an average of 282 members of their church join the LDS church each week. Coincidentally, the (sic) average Southern Baptist congregation has 283 members, which means the Baptists lose 52 congregations each year to the Mormons.

Though a group may mention ‘Jesus’ and season their conversation with spiritual-sounding, familiar Christians, not all that glitters is gold. For example, those who worship The Sacred Mushroom (No, I’m NOT kidding) refer to a mushroom as ‘Jesus’ so, based upon Romans 10:9-10 (…if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

For with the heart, man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation.) They consider themselves “saved.” Some believe this and have placed their faith in a fungus. We must ask ourselves who this Jesus is whenever that Name is spoken. Is Lucifer’s brother? The archangel Michael? An Ascended Master? A mere prophet? A fungus? Or is the ‘Jesus’ to whom they refer the Lord of all Creation that He claimed to be? Jesus of Nazareth was either a liar, a lunatic, or truly Lord of all… the way WE must see Him as well.