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Sermon #4190

Spiritism

A Sermon on Ephesians 6:10-13

Scripture

Ephesians 6:10-13 ESV NASB KJV
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against …

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Sermon Description

Christianity is often rejected by people in western society who posit themselves as too sophisticated for the backwards beliefs of the Christian faith. Yet, there is undoubtedly a rise in contemporary culture in occult activity like astrology, black magic, divination, and spiritism. In the West there is a reversion back to a pre-Reformation, and even pre-Christian, bondage to demonic powers. How is one to think about these phenomena? Why should Christians even attempt to deal with this unusual topic at all? In this sermon on Ephesians 6:10–13 titled “Spiritism,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones looks across Scripture to help the listener understand the general activity, as well as the particular operations of evil and malevolent spiritual forces in the world. This sermon on demonology helpfully classifies the outworking of occult activity in its ancient and modern forms. Dr. Lloyd-Jones’s interest in the topic, however, is not merely an attempt to satisfy an intellectual curiosity. Christians must know about these things in order to understand their Bibles, reach the nations that are influenced by demonic powers, and equip the church with the ability to test the spirits rather than continue in ignorance.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The desire to know the future is innate in human nature. Evil spirits prey on this desire by claiming to foretell the future through mediums like fortune tellers, clairvoyants, and psychics.
  2. Astrology claims that the stars and heavenly bodies influence our lives. This belief originated from paganism and the idea that the stars were gods.
  3. Black magic claims that spirits give certain people unusual powers, like the ability to heal diseases, influence nature, and cast spells. This includes witchcraft.
  4. Unusual spirit activity includes poltergeists (objects moving), haunted houses, and ghosts. Though some cases have rational explanations, some seem beyond scientific understanding.
  5. Voluntary submission to spirits includes spiritism or spiritualism - the belief that the dead can communicate through mediums. This belief is very old but gained popularity in the 19th century.
  6. The desire for comfort after losing loved ones and the desire for guidance and knowledge fuel interest in spiritism. Spiritists claim spirits can provide information, warn of danger, heal diseases, and even materialize.
  7. Spiritists claim Jesus and the prophets were just mediums with psychic abilities. They say spiritism helps them understand and believe the Bible. But their beliefs contradict Scripture.
  8. Christians must understand these evil spirits to avoid being deceived. When tragedy strikes, the devil may use spiritism to ensnare vulnerable people. We must rely on God's strength and armor.

The Book of Ephesians

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.