“I don’t think I’m evil,” she says, irritated that she is being pressed on her beliefs. “The heart of man is not wicked, and being taught that will definitely keep you from seeking it.” She goes on to say that God has given us an “inner compass,” and that we are not encouraged to follow it, because of religious beliefs. This was a conversation I had not too long ago. Most people believe that human beings are not inherently evil, and, therefore, do not need a savior. What Christians would view as evil is generally rationalized as illusory, or ignorance, and not the fault of humankind.According to her belief system, all we have to do is get in touch with our inner “God,” and we can move on to the next level of consciousness—Christ-consciousness. God is in us, God is us. We can become one with God, a God who is an unconscious, impersonal, creative force, in which manifests itself in nature and material, and various gods throughout history.
This is the typical thought process of those who have been seduced and indoctrinated by the New Age. But is this really a “new” concept? Satan has been using this line of deception since the beginning of creation. When God created Adam and Eve and placed them in the Garden of Eden, he told them that they could eat from any tree, except for one. God told them that their disobedience to him, the fulfillment of their selfish desires, would cause them to die. But the serpent beguiled them into trying to find satisfaction apart from God, and they disobeyed and ate. Satan told them that God wasn’t being truthful with them, and that by eating the fruit, they would become like God himself, that eating of the fruit wasn’t evil, but good, and that God was trying to hide this “truth” from them. This lie in the Garden forms the basis of all false religious systems today, including the New Age.
This seduction into this esoteric (hidden) knowledge is central to most cults, Eastern mystic religions, and the New Age. This idea that man is becoming God, is God, or God is in man is taught in Hinduism, Taoism, and even Roman Catholicism, a false religious system masquerading as Christianity. Even Buddhism and Atheist religions to a certain extent teach a type of humanistic self-worship. This concept is known as pantheism. As part of this teaching, evil is usually said not to exist or is rationalized as ignorance, caused by evil spirits rather than man, and should be warded off using mystical means. It’s also taught to be part of a dualistic oneness composed of good and evil, a Yin and Yang, so that in reality there is no good or evil, just opposing equal forces. But the Bible teaches that evil is sin, a rebellion against God the creator, a pursuit of satisfaction apart from him (Matthew 5:19, Proverbs 8:13, John 3:19-20, John 8:44, 1 John 3:8).
It’s also taught to be part of a dualistic oneness composed of good and evil, a Yin and Yang, so that in reality there is no good or evil, just opposing equal forces. But the Bible teaches that evil is sin, a rebellion against God the creator, a pursuit of satisfaction apart from him (Matthew 5:19, Proverbs 8:13, John 3:19-20, John 8:44, 1 John 3:8).
Sadly, even prominent Evangelicals are dabbling in this divination. Rick Warren is probably one of the most well-known Evangelical pastors of today, yet his ministry tends to lead people into the practice of forbidden things. He encourages the use of Breath Prayers in his book, The Purpose Driven Life (pp. 89, 299) and on his website, Pastors.com, contemplatives Richard Foster, Philip Yancey, Charles Stanley and many more are recommended. He has had well-known New Age sympathizer Leonard Sweet train pastors at his church, and another in Atlanta in 2008. Other prominent Evangelicals that practice divination, and claim to channel direct revelations from God are Matt Chandler, Beth Moore, Mark Driscoll and Steven Furtick (2 Peter 2:1). Yoga is now regularly practiced in many Evangelical churches and accepted as normal (2 Timothy 3:5).
The creative force, or principle, the God of the New Age who has deceived so many is generally believed to be un-relational, that is, it doesn’t deal directly with it’s creation, or “manifestation,” and that the various gods, or ascended masters are responsible for the relations with creation. God is not a conscious being, and cannot be known. As part of this philosophy, man can achieve his own “god-hood” by following the paths of these god-manifestations and by simply becoming aware of your “inner god.” When one becomes aware of his own inner-self, he becomes one with God. This is also a teaching of the Roman Catholic Church:
460 The Word became flesh to make us “partakers of the divine nature”:78 “For this is why the Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God.”79 “For the Son of God became man so that we might become God.”80 “The only-begotten Son of God, wanting to make us sharers in his divinity, assumed our nature, so that he, made man, might make men gods.”81The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that Jesus Christ became man so that man can become God. This brings us back to the original lie of the serpent, that we can be God. This is the same concept that the New Age religion teaches. It teaches that Jesus Christ, among others like Buddha, Krishna, Muhammed, etc., were all teachers who had achieved their godhood by becoming aware of their inner-self, and becoming one with the divine, impersonal creative force.
However, the practical methods of achieving this self-awareness are subjective and is accomplished in a multitude of ways. Among the easiest of these ways is through the use of hallucinogenic drugs. This is typically an introductory way of achieving an altered state of consciousness that leaves the user curious, and longing for more. Some of the more advanced techniques, however, require much practice and self-control, and involve the use of meditative techniques, such as Yoga. When entering into these altered states of consciousness, the person will usually have a euphoric spiritual experience, which leads them to believe that they have uncovered some kind of spiritual truth. But this “truth” is a deception. What New Agers fail to realize is that even the human desire for hidden knowledge is a result of our fallen state.
The Bible says in Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.” This isn’t because God is trying to hide good things from us, he is simply protecting us. He knows that the spiritual realm is filled with demons who want our souls. This is why he tells us to stay away from practicing divination or other spiritual paths that he has allowed (Deuteronomy 18:9-12, Leviticus 19:31, 2 Kings 21:6). It is our natural desire as sinful human beings to try to find fulfillment outside of God, and guess who’s there to exploit our sin? Satan.
Satan knows that our fallen hearts are deceitful, and wicked, and he will never miss an opportunity to pounce on that. Satan desires the worship of humans and will do anything to get that. The Bible says that Satan masquerades around as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14). Satan has created an entire world full of religious systems that are devoted to worshiping him. One of the common beliefs between all of the world’s religious systems, including Buddhism and the New Age is that there will come another “Christ,” known as the Maitreya, who will lead the world into the Age of Aquarius. The general consensus among the followers of this religion is that we are on the verge of this right now, and this Maitreya is actually already living in the world right now, waiting to be called out by his people. He is allegedly making private appearances to people, and performing miracles. But the Bible teaches that this Maitreya is the Antichrist. The bible says about the antichrist:
He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. – Revelation 13:13-14
After the rapture, those left on the earth will be conditioned to believe in the lying signs and wonders he performs. He will perform a fake resurrection, which will bring awe to the world, and since the world has rejected the true Savior, Jesus Christ, they will readily accept Satan’s substitute, the Antichrist, and the world will worship him.
5And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months. 6It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling,a that is, those who dwell in heaven. 7Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them.b And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, 8and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain. – Revelation 13:5-8
So many people have been deceived into believing the lie, and, unfortunately, many will take this lie to their grave. This is exactly where the Devil wants you; he wants you to believe that you are a good person and that you don’t need a savior. He wants you to believe that Christianity is a dark force that tries to keep you from following your “good” heart. He wants you to trust in yourself, rather than in Christ Jesus because he knows that Jesus is the only true path to eternal life.
7Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 or the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.