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09. September 2017 · Comments Off on VOICES FROM BEYOND? · Categories: General · Tags:

Recently I read the biography of Canada’s longest serving prime minister.  William Lyon Mackenzie King was born in the city that I now live in: Kitchener Ontario, but it was known as BERLIN when Mr. King was born in 1874.  He served Canada as Prime Minister in the years 1921–1926, 1926–1930 and 1935–1948. Despite his many leadership qualities, especially during Canada’s involvement in the second World War, he was also a man of various oddities, even in his day.

I’m going to discuss just one of these and that is his propensity to communicate with the dead. He did so with the help of mediums, of which there were several in his social circle of friends, and apparently he later developed the so-called ability to engage in this activity himself.  One of the chief conversation partners was his deceased mother.  King, who had never married, was devoted to his mother in life, and missed her almost to obsession after she had died.  It is said that a huge portrait of her hung in his study, and that Mr. King would sit under that portrait for hours and meditate, think, and talk to her.  He would seek his mother’s advice when trying to figure out political problems.  We know this from the diaries that have now been made public in which King made copious entries about all manner of subjects.

Now Mackenzie King also considered himself to be a Christian.  He read his Bible, loved to sing hymns, and attended church regularly. And seemingly, he saw no contradiction between those two areas of his life.  Nor do many other modern people today

Another public figure who regularly engaged in spiritism (or spiritualism) which is the name of this activity, was Nancy Reagan, the wife of one of the former US presidents.  Mrs. Reagan is known to have had an enormous influence on her husband, and Ronald Reagan freely admits in his autobiography the he openly discussed various political issues with her on a regular basis. Is it possible that decisions were made based on advice that depended on communication from the “beyond” ?

I raise this issue, and I cite these two examples because we often hear contemporary wisdom which says that politicians should keep their personal beliefs, religious and otherwise to themselves, and not mix them in with their job of running a country with diverse religious beliefs and cultural norms.  Indeed most Canadian prime ministers in the modern era have done just that. Pierre Trudeau, Brian Mulroney, Jean Chretien were all Roman Catholic, but you would never know it from many of the things that they said and did.  And we remember Paul Martin, who was called out by the Archbishop of Toronto of his day for not “being a good Catholic” when his government legalized same sex marriage.  Mr. Martin was not troubled by that at all, replying that he “gets along fine with the man upstairs.”  In other words, one’s faith and ones life can be neatly compartmentalized and kept as far away from the other as possible.

So what should we make of this business of contacting the dead?  Firstly let me say that it goes on a lot more than we think.  The new age movement, which is no longer new, has given the whole thing a less spooky and more respectable name.  Its called “channeling”.  It involves making contact with an “avatar”, a spiritual entity, sometimes referred to as a “spirit guide” from whom one extracts wisdom, advice on a particular matter, or clarification of past events or contact with a departed loved one.  An  “avatar” (I place the word in quotation marks to distance myself from the term) is supposed to consist of any number of possible different beings: a powerful or knowing person who has lived in the past such as an artist, scientist, or other great thinker or celebrity.

 Basically, an incarnation or reincarnation of someone who lived on earth in another life and now lives on in another world. Making contact with avatars is something people do by “channeling” them…it can occur with or without the help of a human medium or a “spirit guide”. At Nancy Reagan’s funeral, her daughter stated that her mother had “channeled” her late husband’s spirit on an almost daily basis since his death.  And yes, Nancy received a Christian funeral presided over by an Episcopalian clergyman. There were Bible readings, hymns, prayers, a very nice sermon, and the the traditional burial service of the dead.  “Chanelling” – doesn’t that sound so much more “with it” than what William Lyon Mackenzie King did? – it has become a very mainstream activity.  But is it a hoax? Or is there something to it? In the Old Testament book of 1 Samuel, we read an interesting story of channeling done by King Saul. You can read the whole story here, but here is the summary:

Saul was facing a major battle, and was terrified.  The story says that inquired of the LORD, but God was no longer communicating with him because he had fallen away from following God’s guidance.  So he commands that people find him a medium. Interestingly, the Bible says that Saul had previously expelled all the spiritists from the land (while he was still following God).  But there was one left in Endor, and Saul goes to her and asks for her to “bring up” the spirit of the decease Samuel the prophet. The story describes this “channeling” séance this way:

 Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?”

“I am in great distress,” Saul said. “The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has departed from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets or by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do.” Samuel said, “Why do you consult me, now that the Lord has departed from you and become your enemy? The Lord has done what he predicted through me. The Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors—to David. 18 Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today. The Lord will deliver both Israel and you into the hands of the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also give the army of Israel into the hands of the Philistines.” (1.Samuel 28:15-19 NIV)

Now what happened here?  Did Samuel really appear and speak these words (which turned out to be true!) ?  And when William Lyon MacKenzie King channeled his mother, did she really appear and speak to him?  If not, who did? 

First, let me say very briefly, that while I have never been to a séance, I have counselled people who have, and who report that that their beloved departed did in fact say things that only they could have known, sometimes in a voice that was identical to the departed, in order to make the channeler believe that it was their loved one. 

Secondly, empirical evidence exists of séances that have been recorded both in audio and video that show that something indeed happens, “someone” indeed “speaks” and sometimes even “appears”. But who is it? 

Because of the space limitations here let me say based on my research, the irrefutable data above, and my understanding of Scripture it is a spirit who indeed appears and speaks.  We live in the natural world of time and space, where we can see, hear, touch, smell, and feel.  But there is another spirit world that is just as real as our world, that we ordinarily do not have access to but which we shall enter at our death.  God, in His Word has set boundaries that forbid us to try and communicate with that other world.  But if someone does, what happens?

Sometimes nothing. (There is a lot of fraudulent spiritism going on).  But sometimes a spirit does communicate with the living.  But those spirits are not Samuel, and not Mackenzie King’s mother, and not Ronald Reagan but imposter spirits that have access to knowledge of these people –remember the spirit world has different levels of knowledge than our world.  These spirits, that appear during séances are deceptive spirits.  They are subject to the Great Deceiver of the universe, and people who seek out these spirits, consult them, and perhaps heed their voice eventually become enslaved to them. It is better, I think, to heed God’s Word which says:

When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? (Isaiah 8:19)

 

 

 

 

 

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