Former New Age priest Brain Flynn wrote about his conversion to Christ and the horror he found in the Christian community he was introduced to. He wrote: “If your 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.”1)Brian Flynn, Running Against the Wind: the transformation of a new age medium and his warning to the church, second edition, Lighthouse Trails Publishing, 2005, p. 89 Paul Yonggi Cho, pastor of the one-time largest church in the world questioned, “But if the devil could do these things, why should not the Church of Jesus Christ do all the more?”2)Paul Yonggi Cho, the Fourth Dimension, vol. 1, Bridge Publishing Inc.,1979, p. 37, also cited by Hank Hanegraaff, Christianity In Crisis, 21st Century, Thomas Nelson, 2009, p. 111 Other authors have said, “What makes a particular practice Christian is not its source, but its intent.”3)Tilden Edwards, Living in the Presence, HarperCollins Paperback Edition, 1994, p. 18 as cited by Brian Flynn, Running Against the Wind: the transformation of a new age medium and his warning to the church, second edition, Lighthouse Trails Publishing, 2005, p. 148

Can Christians adapt any technique suggested by the world? Should we only consider whether our intent is pure or not? Should we approach a pragmatic philosophy and seek anything that works? Dave Hunt has warned “The seduction … does not take place as an obvious frontal assault from rival religious beliefs. That would be vigorously resisted. Instead, it comes to some Christians in the guise of faith-producing techniques for gaining spiritual power and experiencing miracles and to others as self-improvement psychologies for fully realizing human potential that are seen as scientific aids to successful Christian living.”4)Dave Hunt & T.A. McMahon, the Seduction of Christianity, Harvest House Publishers, 1985, p. 11 Kenneth Hagin offers techniques to receive power from God.  “By following the seven steps which we have outlined in these two lessons, you will be able to help people receive the Holy Spirit. And you will feel personally blessed and rewarded for your part in their receiving this wonderful infilling of God’s power.”5)Kenneth E. Hagin, Baptism in the Holy Spirit, Kenneth Hagin Ministries, Inc., 1986, 1999, p. 66 Occultist always offer steps to follow to achieve specific desires. Wiccans cast spells by following rehearsed steps in rituals. New Age programs like AA and NA offer 12 steps to find sobriety.6) http://truthwatchers.com/twelve-steps-into-the-new-age/ Russell Chandler explained “…self-improvement, visualization, and guided imagery techniques – including meditation yoga – have percolated into many liberal Protestant denominations, some Roman Catholic circles, and not a few conservative and Pentecostal/charismatic Christian churches.”7)Russell Chandler, Understanding the New Age, Word Publishing, 1988, p. 207-208; as cited by Eldon K. Winker, The New Age Is Lying to You, Concordia Publishing House, 1994, p. 176

Douglas Groothuis wrote about how the New Age movement has perverted what the Bible teaches about Jesus Christ to design their own image of Jesus, a “portrait of Jesus is echoed by many others in the New Age fold, whether their roots be in Gnosticism, Essenism, the theosophical movement, the Mind Science, Eastern religions, Western occultism, channeling, or elsewhere. According to such thinking, Jesus is not the unique, unrepeatable, and unsurpassable incarnation of a personal God, but a manifestation of a universal state of consciousness that anyone can attain through proper techniques.”8)Douglas Groothuis, Jesus In An Age of Controversy, Harvest House Publishers, 1996 p. 69 New Age authors have even declared their intentions of infiltrating Christian churches by introducing the people to New Age techniques. “One of the biggest advantages we have as New Agers is, once the occult, metaphysical and New Age terminology is removed, we have concepts and techniques that are very acceptable to the general public. So we can change the names and demonstrate the power. In so doing, we open the door to millions who normally would not be receptive.”9)Dick Sutphen, “Infiltrating the New Age into Society,” What Is, Summer, 1986, p. 14, as quoted by Douglas Groothuis, Confronting the New Age, InterVarsity Press, 1988, p. 142; also cited by Gary Kah, The Demonic Roots of Globalization, Huntington House, 1995, p. 154 Douglas Groothuis warns of the many counterfeits which the Bible repeatedly speaks of and extends this advice. “To sort the genuine from the counterfeit requires biblical discernment, not just the identification of New Age buzz words like holistic and global A rich knowledge of the genuine article – biblical Christianity – throws the counterfeit into clear relief.”10)Douglas Groothuis, Confronting the New Age, InterVarsity Press, 1988, p. 20 Historian Robert Ellwood documented the spiritual shift of America that took place in the sixties, as people’s faith became more syncretized with other religions. “In 1960 the publication of Christian Yoga, by J.M. Dechanet, a Belgian Benedictine, made an extraordinary impact in the press; this was a study, moderate and cautious by today’s standards, of how Christians could benefit from the practice of certain yogic techniques. Like Dom Aelrad Graham’s Zen Catholicism (1963), it helped to inaugurate an age of interreligious practice as well as dialogue, and to mark the end of the fortress mentality of pre-Vatican II Catholicism.”11)Robert S. Ellwood, The 60s Spiritual Awakening: American Religion Moving from Modern to Postmodern, Rutgers University Press, 1994, p. 85 He also identified

Natural religion [opposed to “revealed religion,” i.e. specific revelation of Scriptures] believes this innate presence may be tapped by a normal quickening of spiritual sensitivity, which can be aided by various techniques of insights but does not require extraordinary grace. Faith in nature‘s God may affirm hidden (“occult”) natural forces that go beyond reason as ordinarily understood, including trust in psychic energies and powers of mind that seem almost magical.12)Robert S. Ellwood, The 60s Spiritual Awakening: American Religion Moving from Modern to Postmodern, Rutgers University Press, 1994, p. 332

This “natural religion” is experience basis of seeking truth from within self by utilizing techniques of some sort.

One occultist spoke of this “natural religion” and the techniques used to develop these “magical” “powers of the mind” as ways to foresee the future. He wrote: “The seers of today’s world use many of the same methods or variations of the methods of the ancients but with greeter insight into the psyche and how it works.”13)Herbert B. Greenhouse, Premonitions: A Leap Into The Future, Bernard Geis Associates, 1971, p. 124 He concluded:

Possibly the most important technique for developing into a seer is mediation. Arthur Ford, one of America’s famous psychics, suggested sitting quietly for at least twenty minutes or half an hour each day….
Different kinds of meditation are described in books on yoga or Zen disciplines, as well as in general books on the subject….
The prophets of the Aquarian Age are all meditators, either alone or in group sessions which they may lead. The American Society for Psychical Research in New York City has groups that meet regularly and meditate prior to testing for extrasensory perception.14)Herbert B. Greenhouse, Premonitions: A Leap Into The Future, Bernard Geis Associates, 1971, p. 238-239

John Ankerberg and John Weldon warned:

Through mystical experiences, or while participating in techniques which alter one’s state of consciousness, people are powerfully persuaded that the religious world view of the New Age is true….
New Agers want to help everybody discover this power and experientially realize they are one with God. Once people have the mystical experience, New Agers expect that people will live out their new world view.15)John Ankerberg & John Weldon, The Facts On The New Age Movement, Harvest House Publishers, 1988, p. 7

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Heath Henning
Heath's Testimony Heath heads the Set Free addictions ministry on Friday nights at Mukwonago Baptist Church and is involved in evangelism on the University of Wisconsin Whitewater campus, offering his expertise in apologetics at the weekly Set Free Bible Study every Tuesday evening. He currently lives in East Troy, Wisconsin with his wife and eight children.