Beware of Cult Practices

My Bible college professor taught us about the danger of blaspheming God’s Son by claiming that He is anything less than God. He told how for some the earth opened, for some fire fell from Heaven, and for some floods came. He told us that he had one response when false cult … More

Cults

In this passage we see that many people in Ephesus believed that illness and disease, and especially mental illness, were due to evil spirits who settled in a person. Exorcism was a regular trade. Many treasured their books on magic and their curios covered with charms because these things had enormous commercial value. However the power of the Gospel at Ephesus broke the shackles Satan had fastened on the people. Many confessed their involvement in these black arts, and showed their repentance. They were willing to bring their books and magic and burn things that they had previously treasured which had great commercial value (v.19). The testimony of this public repudiation of error led to many conversions.

Many new believers today would do well to go through their books and records and burn a large percentage of them, just as these believers did. In fact some Christians today fool around with Ouija boards, tea leaves, palm readers, horoscopes etc. God warns His people against such things because any reliance on them denies that God’s Word is all we need for guidance. God will never bless when we have one foot in the camp of God and the other foot in the camp of the devil.

Paul makes plans to return to Greece and Palestine, and then go to Rome (v. 21). Two-and-a-half years had passed since Paul arrived in Ephesus, and he felt his work there was over. To prepare the believers in Macedonia for his coming, Paul sent two of his disciples (Timothy and Erastus) ahead, intending to follow them shortly (v. 22). Paul had wanted for many years to go to Rome, but little did he realize that he would go as a prisoner.

Application

When my family was home I discussed with them what is wrong with Ouija boards, horoscopes, palm readers etc. I know that I have a responsibility to warn them about having anything to do with these things. I also need to pray a hedge of protection around my family.

Acts 19:17-22 (English Standard Version)

And this became known to all the residents of Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks. And fear fell upon them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was extolled. Also many of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices. And a number of those who had practiced magic arts brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted the value of them and found it came to fifty thousand pieces of silver. So the word of the Lord continued to increase and prevail mightily. Now after these events Paul resolved in the Spirit to pass through Macedonia and Achaia and go to Jerusalem, saying, "After I have been there, I must also see Rome." And having sent into Macedonia two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.

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