8. Spiritualism

By John Thiel, Second Angel’s Message, study 8, mp3

In our quest of understanding the second angel we are looking now at the subject of spiritualism. The second angel’s message leaves you to puzzle as to where spiritualism comes into this.

Revelation 14:8 And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.

Where is spiritualism in these words? In our past studies on the second angel we saw that when it says, Babylon is fallen, it particularly pertains to the USA – Apostate Protestantism. We saw that it is fed by Roman Catholicism, and how Roman Catholicism was fed by pagan Rome, which was itself fed by Babylon way back in Nimrod’s time. The ingredient of Paganism is what has fed and supported and sustained the Babylonish influence thereafter. Paganism infiltrated.

We here identify Paganism:

Revelation 12:3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. … 7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. … 12 Therefore rejoice, [ye] heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

The ingredient of paganism, that great red dragon which represented pagan Rome with its seven heads, or seven forms of government in Rome, and its ten horns which were the ten barbaric tribes which Rome ruled over, that was all the pagan Roman Empire, but this is synchronized with Satan himself. Paganism is synchronized with Satan, as we can see: The great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, Satan.

The terrible thing that the whole world is going to be jeopardized with, as seen in verse 12, is that it is woe to every human being that is dwelling on the planet because Satan the dragon is come down having great wrath, and he knows he’s got a short time.

You can see right through history until our time that Satan, the dragon, Satanism, is rampant through paganism, infiltrating into the early Christian church, developing into the beast (the papacy), and then developing into apostate Protestantism. Spiritualism in the time of the second angel is identifiable, because spiritualism is Satan worship.

Revelation 16 leaves you without any shadow of doubt that Babylon, apostate Protestantism, Roman Babylon and pagan Babylon are three elements with spiritualism intact.

Revelation 16:13 And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs [come] out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

The Three Unclean Beasts

Here they are, all three:

  1. Paganism
  2. Roman Catholicism
  3. Apostate Protestantism (the false prophet)

Revelation 16:14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, [which] go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.

What is this? Spiritualism. Three unclean spirits like frogs. In Egypt pagan worship involved frogs. That was why there was a plague of frogs, because that was what they were worshipping. What is the foundation of spiritualism?

Here is the serpent beguiling Eve, and what is the underlying principle behind true spiritualism?

Genesis 3:4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

The word of God was that if they ate the tree they would surely die. And Spiritualism has an underlying foundation, which is that, You will never die, that your life goes on living. That was the lie that Satan proclaimed. That deception has to do with the very kernel that runs right through spiritualism. All the spiritualistic religions have it. You come up again as a different being, you go on living, you either go to heaven or to hell in the Catholic Church. Every pagan influence has to do with life going on after death, Ye shall not surely die.

The continuation of that thought is expressed in the following scripture:

Isaiah 8:19 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?

It’s a bit of a twist around. Because the way it should read is, “Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: for the living to the dead.” It’s just that that other part has been put in between.

You go to the dead for the living – and the dead will speak to you to communicate to the living. That is total witchcraft. That is spiritualism. We see the connection of this with Babylon.

Numbers 25:1 And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab. 2 And they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods: and the people did eat, and bowed down to their gods. 3 And Israel joined himself unto Baalpeor: and the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel.

They joined themselves unto Baalpeor and they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods. Let us connect that with the following scripture, where the psalmist qualifies what that actually means, as they were attaching themselves to Baalpeor:

Psalm 106:28 They joined themselves also unto Baalpeor, and ate the sacrifices of the dead.

What did we read before? “The sacrifices of their gods.” The gods in the worship of paganism was the worship of the dead. If you go back to Nimrod, when his wife died, she was the queen of heaven, it was worshipping the goddess. The sun god, Mithra, it was worshipping the dead. It is directly connected with that. Although they are dead, they are not dead in their eyes, and they worship them. It is qualified here, they worshipped their gods, they sacrificed to their gods. Here the Psalmist says, they ate the sacrifices of the dead. The Bible connects this for us.

This was the very activity of the witch of Endor, to whom Saul went, and she supposedly raised Samuel to tell Saul his future. Therefore Saul went to the dead for the living, and that was witchcraft, that was spiritualism. The subject of the immortality of the soul is the very subject of spiritualism. This is the very thing that God taught His people to shun entirely.

Deuteronomy 18:10 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, 11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.

Necrosis means death. A necromancer is someone who refers to the dead. There is what God taught His people to shun completely, because that is spiritualism.

The doctrine of man’s consciousness in death, especially the belief that spirits of the dead return to minister to the living, has prepared the way for modern spiritualism. If the dead are admitted to the presence of God and holy angels, and privileged with knowledge far exceeding what they before possessed, why should they not return to the earth to enlighten and instruct the living? If, as taught by popular theologians, spirits of the dead are hovering about their friends on earth, why should they not be permitted to communicate with them, to warn them against evil, or to comfort them in sorrow? How can those who believe in man’s consciousness in death reject what comes to them as divine light communicated by glorified spirits? Here is a channel regarded as sacred, through which Satan works for the accomplishment of his purposes. The fallen angels who do his bidding appear as messengers from the spirit world. While professing to bring the living into communication with the dead, the prince of evil exercises his bewitching influence upon their minds. {GC 551.2}

We see that spiritualism has to do with the doctrine that when you die your spirit goes on living.

Many endeavor to account for spiritual manifestations by attributing them wholly to fraud and sleight of hand on the part of the medium. But while it is true that the results of trickery have often been palmed off as genuine manifestations, there have been, also, marked exhibitions of supernatural power. The mysterious rapping with which modern spiritualism began was not the result of human trickery or cunning, but was the direct work of evil angels, who thus introduced one of the most successful of soul-destroying delusions. Many will be ensnared through the belief that spiritualism is a merely human imposture; when brought face to face with manifestations which they cannot but regard as supernatural, they will be deceived, and will be led to accept them as the great power of God. {GC 553.1}

Within the churches of apostate Protestantism you can see that there is a very real possibility to fall directly into spiritualism.

The Babylon fallen in the second angel message, which is Protestant America, is connected with spiritualism.

Revelation 13:2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as [the feet] of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.

This is the papal beast. Who gave him his power? Who gave him his authority and his seat? Paganism did, or the dragon – spiritualism. Spiritualism was behind the rise of the papacy. That is what we saw in Revelation 16, these three unclean spirits out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. They are the spirits of devils – spiritualism.

As we think about this, how can beautiful Protestant Christians fall for that spiritualism?

Recall our studies, that when the first angel’s message came to them, the second angel’s message came after as a consequence of their rejection of the first angel’s message. When people reject the truth, what can happen to them? If they already have the doctrine of the immortality of the soul, what can happen to them if they reject the truth? They reject the second angel’s message, and in consequence to that, what happens to them?

2 Thessalonians 2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 9 [Even him], whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

What was the wording that we read in the beginning? The dragon came down, and woe to the inhabitants of the earth because he will deceive. The people who reject the first angel’s message were Protestant Americans with faulty doctrines. And by rejecting that message, they showed that they had no love for the truth, that they had no yearning to submit to these powerful manifestations of scriptural truth, so God sent them strong delusions that they should believe a lie. How would He do that?

Do we think that God is the person who deludes people? We have a perfect illustration of that with Ahab, when God wanted to see Ahab destroyed because he had filled up his cup of iniquity. He sent him a strong delusion, and how did He do that? It was when He counselled with His people in heaven, and there was a lying spirit that said, I will misguide him, and God said, Okay. The Lord sent him that spirit, which of course was Satan, and here it is:

2 Corinthians 11:13 For such [are] false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore [it is] no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

This is a very vivid and important scripture by which we can identify that the apostles of Christ who reject the message of the first angel will be infiltrated by apostles who become deceitful workers and who transform themselves into the apostles of Christ. God will send them strong delusions. The people who reject this message will be affected by these so-called apostles of Christ and by Satan himself transforming himself into an angel of light. It is not a great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness.

In these beautiful Protestant churches that have received the message of the first angel and rejected it because they had no love for that truth, these apostles of Satan become apostles of Jesus Chris with a twist. He sends them strong delusions.

1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

How can you seduce a Christian? Wouldn’t that mean that you would come with some of the Christian’s most wonderful and hallowed meditations and put a twist on it? They are so attractive, whether it be Christian music, so seductive, with just a twist, or whether it be the doctrine of going to heaven and enjoying heaven, and how best can you seduce than with the thought that, Oh when you die you go to heaven? There are many seductive programs that these beings use. Observe again how this seduction takes place:

It is true that spiritualism is now changing its form and, veiling some of its more objectionable features {GC 557.2} 

Spiritualism makes people shudder, so now they have to come across in a feature that is not objectionable.

It is true that spiritualism is now changing its form and, veiling some of its more objectionable features, is assuming a Christian guise. But its utterances from the platform and the press have been before the public for many years, and in these its real character stands revealed. These teachings cannot be denied or hidden. {GC 557.2} 

Even in its present form, so far from being more worthy of toleration than formerly, it is really a more dangerous, because a more subtle, deception. While it formerly denounced Christ and the Bible, it now professes to accept both. {GC 558.1}

It is seducing. They accept the Bible. They accept Christ.

But the Bible is interpreted in a manner that is pleasing to the unrenewed heart, while its solemn and vital truths are made of no effect. {Ibid.}

Notice how this happens:

Love is dwelt upon as the chief attribute of God, {Ibid.}

Well, that’s wonderful, isn’t it? Isn’t that the chief attribute of God?

Love is dwelt upon as the chief attribute of God, but it is degraded to a weak sentimentalism, {Ibid.}

Haven’t we been under that? Sentimental love?

… making little distinction between good and evil. God’s justice, His denunciations of sin, the requirements of His holy law, are all kept out of sight. The people are taught to regard the Decalogue as a dead letter. Pleasing, bewitching fables captivate the senses and lead men to reject the Bible as the foundation of their faith. Christ is as verily denied as before; but Satan has so blinded the eyes of the people that the deception is not discerned.  {Ibid.}

That’s frightening. Strong delusions. But why should we be afraid of that? We should only be afraid if we reject the truth. If we don’t love the truth, then God will send us strong delusions. What will we actually behold in spiritualism in modern times?

Through the two great errors, the immortality of the soul and Sunday sacredness, Satan will bring the people under his deceptions. While the former lays the foundation of spiritualism, the latter creates a bond of sympathy with Rome. {GC 588.1}

The immortality of the soul creates a bond with spiritualism, and Sunday sacredness creates a bond of sympathy with Rome.

The Protestants of the United States will be foremost in stretching their hands across the gulf to grasp the hand of spiritualism; they will reach over the abyss to clasp hands with the Roman power; and under the influence of this threefold union, this country will follow in the steps of Rome in trampling on the rights of conscience. {Ibid.}

Spiritualism is particularly the area in which Protestants will reach their hands. You see it in all the Pentecostal religions with their tongue speaking. When you study tongue speaking you just need to go to the ancient pagans, they practiced tongue speaking. We read it in Isaiah (8:19), “wizards that peep, and that mutter.

What does it mean that the Protestants are reaching their hands across the abyss to both spiritualism and Rome, in reference to the messages of the three angels?

By the decree enforcing the institution of the papacy in violation of the law of God, our nation will disconnect herself fully from righteousness. When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of the Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with spiritualism, when, under the influence of this threefold union, our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government, and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near. {5T 451.1}

We have here a vivid description by which you can see precisely that by the protestants rejecting the message of the first angel, and reaching their hands over the abyss to spiritualism and over the abyss to Rome and the papacy, as that becomes a reality, we know that the end is near. And that is what the three angels’ messages are announcing. We can see then that spiritualism has everything to do with the second angel’s message. This causes us to introduce our next study regarding a spiritualistic movement that takes shape:

Papists, Protestants, and worldlings will alike accept the form of godliness without the power, and they will see in this union a grand movement for the conversion of the world and the ushering in of the long-expected millennium. {GC 588.3} 

Through spiritualism, Satan appears as a benefactor of the race, healing the diseases of the people, and professing to present a new and more exalted system of religious faith; {GC 589.1}

What is this movement? It’s called the New Age Movement and that is what we will study next.


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Posted on 03/08/2009, in 2nd Angel's Message and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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